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Two of the six scheduled USEF Dressage Observation and Strategic Planning Sessions wrapped up late November in California, led by Robert Dover, the USEF Chef d’Equipe/Technical Advisor.

The sessions provided training and strategic guidance for athletes as they look toward international competition and the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. The first session took place at Pinnacle Farm in New Jersey Nov. 16-17, featuring 10 athlete/horse combinations, and the second at Michael Fowler’s Epona Farm in Thousand Oaks, Nov. 23-24, featuring 11 athlete/horse combinations.

Over two days, Dover was able to work individually with each athlete/horse combination, striving to enhance training practices and assist athletes in achieving their competition goals. Athlete’s personal trainers/coaches were also invited to attend the sessions.

“I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to participate in the strategic planning session with Robert,” said Brian Hafner, one of eight to participate in the California session. “It was great to get help from Robert on both of my horses, Lombardo and Chablis, and also to get help with organizing a training and competition plan for the upcoming year.”

The Epona Farm session also included Jan Ebeling with Rafalca and Rassolini, Charlotte Jorst with Vitalis and Adventure, Sarah Lockman with Vinterpol, Shannon Peters with Weltino’s Magic, Kathleen Raine with Breanna, Sabine Schut-Kery with Sanceo, and Christine Traurig with Louisdor.

“Following these sessions I am more excited than ever with the amazing talent of riders and horses in the United States,” said Dover. “The depth of world-class combinations is growing rapidly and I am confident that America is on the path to sustained excellence and a medal-winning future. Go Team USA!”

Several combinations taking part in these sessions were recently award training grants as part of the 2013 USEF Developing Dressage Program, having been identified and selected based on their potential to successfully represent the U.S. in international competition. These combinations included: Kim Herslow/Rosmarin, Brian Hafner/Lombardo V, and Sarah Lockman/Vinterpol.

Two additional West Coast sessions are set for February and April, respectively.

MORE INFO: http://bit.ly/1312B_NT

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