LEXINGTON, Ky. — The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) has named the U.S. Driving Team for the 2016 FEI World Driving Championships for Singles. The championship will take place Aug. 3-7, 2016, in Piber Köflach, Austria.
Leslie Berndl of Newcastle and her own Uminco, a 2001 KWPN gelding, have been selected to the U.S. Driving Team that will compete in singles.
Michael Freund will serve as Chef d’Equipe and Thorsten Zarembowicz will be the team coach.
WOODSIDE — The heightened atmosphere of the Horse Park at Woodside’s Grand Prix arena, with crowds packed all around, gave the competitors in the Preliminary Challenge divisions at the Spring Event at Woodside the feeling of the “Preliminary Olympics”.
Only a one-tenth of a point separated the top two in the Preliminary Challenge Horse division heading into show jumping. Busy California-based British rider James Alliston held second, third, ninth and eleventh places after cross country. A clear round by Alliston on Sophie Hulme’s Thomascourt Cooley sealed the win on 28.7 penalties after overnight leader En Vogue, owned by Ruth Bley, and ridden by Kimmy Steinbuch, had two rails down.
Christine Traurig, in her second year as the USEF Young Horse Coach, seeks to further develop the Young Horse Program and supports the riders, owners and breeders in the U.S. Traurig also encourages communication on the progress of the Young Horse Program, as she oversees horses and riders preparing for the World Breeding Championships in Holland as well as those preparing for the Markel/USEF Young Horse Finals in Illinois.
For more than 30 years, Traurig has been a successful rider and trainer of young horses. She was born on her parent’s farm in Altenbuecken, Germany, near Verden where they bred, raised and prepared Hanoverians for the Verden Hanoverian Elite Auction.
LAKESIDE — Diana Cavender, a veteran of more than 50 parades since she joined the Escondido Mounted Posse six years ago, was killed April 23 when her horse spooked and fell, knocking her to the ground at the Lakeside Western Days Parade. The incident occured about 10:50 a.m. after the posse had concluded the parade, as Cavender and her horse were approaching a staging area. Emergency crews rushed her to Sharp Memorial Hospital in San Diego, where she died at 5:41 p.m.
CHATSWORTH — Chatsworth equestrian community leader Mary Kaufman, a longtime president of ETI Corral 54, died unexpectedly March 24 on the second anniversary of the death of her favorite horse, Ace.
Kaufman, 68, who had endured a months-long battle with a troublesome hip replacement, also served of the board of the Chatsworth Neighborhood Council and was chair of the equestrian committee and chief organizer of the Council’s annual Day of the Horse festival.
Kaufman was appointed by Councilman Mitch Englander to the Los Angeles Equestrian Advisory Committee and was active with the West Valley Volunteer Mounted Patrol. She hosted Mayors Eric Garcetti and Antonio Villaraigosa, and Council Members Greig Smith and Englander and other dignitaries on horseback tours of Chatsworth’s hills and trails, promoting the need to preserve the rural environment.
THERMAL — Week VII of the HITS Desert Circuit kicked off an exciting week of big money opportunities for jumpers, and Rich Fellers took home another win, this time riding a new horse, Coupis, to the $5,000 Brook Ledge Open Welcome. He took Leslie Nelson’s horse to a double clear round in a blistering 40.649 seconds. Canadian course designer Danny Foster had put riders to the test building a lengthy and technical course set at 1.45 meters.
The jump-off came down to who could master the tight roll back turns and gallop the fastest. Only five of nine entries who had made the jump-off went clean, and a pair of California riders, Mandy Porter of Encinitas and Susie Hutchison of Temecula, finished second and third, respectively.
USEF gives Tamra Smith’s super-season another boost, names SoCal eventer to High Performance Training List
LEXINGTON, Ky. — Temecula-based eventer Tamra Smith, who just won a pair of titles at the Galway Downs International (related story, page 32), was named last week by the U.S. Equestrian Federation to its High Performance Winter/Spring Training List for 2016. She will train as a member of the World Class list with U.S. Eventing Team Coach David O’Connor.
The appointment caps a stellar year and remarkable month, during which Smith turned heads nationally with a win at the Fair Hill International CCI3* in Maryland, where she had led start-to-finish on Mai Baum Oct. 15-18. At Galway, she won both the CCI2* and CCI1* events, on Chatwin and Fleeceworks Royal, respectively.
“This year has just been an amazing journey for me, and I want to thank all of the owners of the remarkable horses I have been so blessed to ride,” Smith said after the Galway Downs International.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Polo Association, American Warmblood Registry, North American Shortpony Registry, Missouri Quarter Horse Association, Michigan, Minnesota, New York and South Carolina Horse Councils, Pal-O-Mine Equine Center and the Virginia Horse Center Foundation are the latest organizations to endorse the American Horse Council’s (AHC) Welfare Code of Practice, the AHC announced last month.
BARCELONA, Spain — Lucy Davis of Los Angeles and her four teammates wrapped up a week’s effort with a fourth-place finish Sept. 26 at the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final.
Led by Chef d’Equipe Robert Ridland, the Hermès U.S. Show Jumping Team quartet of Lauren Hough, Reed Kessler, Laura Kraut, and Beezie Madden had a strong performance in a tough round against some of the world’s best combinations to finish in fourth place on 12 faults.
“It was a very difficult, but brilliant course. It was exactly what you would expect at the Final,” said Ridland. “It’s the highest level of sport with great countries competing here. We knew it was going to be tough when we walked it.”
PASADENA — Cowboy, a Quarter Horse gelding his trainer calls the best kind of horse you’ll ever find, has left his 18-year career as a Los Angeles Police Department Mounted Patrol horse to begin a new venture at a therapeutic riding program.
He was one of 32 horses in the mounted unit in the Metropolitan Division of the LAPD, a serious law enforcement group that primarily works in large crowds, dignitary protection and the issuance of search warrants. He joins another recent LAPD retiree, Shadow, at the MACH 1: Moving A Child Higher program, where he’ll soak up the attention of affectionate youngsters who are overcoming disabilities. He’ll eventually be part of a Wounded Warrior program, too, where he’ll help re-acclimate veterans into society.
“He’s a very exceptional horse,” said officer Joe Willey, a 25-year veteran who has been on the mounted unit 20 years – the last 11 as head trainer.”Dead-broke. Quiet. And tested in the field.”
The 18-year veteran has literally carried officers through high crime areas in Venice Beach, Hollywood and Skid Row. When a Laker celebration turned violent and cars were flipped, Cowboy was there, on duty. His even temperament and patient mind earned him selection as one of Willey’s instruction horses for recruits, who have no experience.