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Courtney King Crowned Winner in Second Day of Cosequin Wellington Dressage

Wellington, FL February 9, 2007 The second day of dressage competition in the Cosequin Wellington Dressage heated up as Courtney King and her own Idocus brought home the blue ribbon in the USEF High Performance Grand Prix.

Idocus, a Dutch stallion, won the grand prix at the Washington International Horse Show in October and continued his ways this afternoon. King was thrilled with her victory and noted that the stallion came into the test feeling very strong.

I was really happy with my test. Hes been feeling great at home, King commented. I think the things Ive worked on in the past couple months I was able to put out there. I thought the passage was a lot better. The one tempis are really expressive now what can I say hes a thrill to ride, and hes very much my horse again. Hes enthusiastic and trying his heart out. He seems happy to be here and very proud of himself.

With a 70.760 percent, King was about four percentage points ahead of the rest of the riders, which is a fairly large margin. She explained that, I had no idea what the other scores were. Idocus is a very confirmed grand prix horse, and Im a little bit biased, but I think hes special to watch. I think hes really elegant and really balanced. He doesnt have the biggest, loftiest gates, but everything he does, to me, has expression in a very controlled way. Thats what makes him special for me.

Kings goals for the rest of the year include the league finals and a possible bid for the World Cup with Idocus. For her younger horses, she said that shes like to shoot for the Pan American Games, but pointed out that horses are horses, and things happen: If one doesnt make it, Im not shattered about it. Spectators will be able to see King compete again on Sunday in the I-I and Grand Prix freestyles.

Placing second and third in the HP grand prix were George Williams and Marnix, and Suzanne Dansby Phelps and Cooper 19, respectively. In addition to the grand prix, King also claimed the top prize in the FEI Intermediaire I class with Mythilus, which hosted 22 riders and was the largest class of the day. The pair was sixth yesterday in the FEI Prix St. Georges and earned a 71.8875 today.

In the USEF High Performance Intermediaire I class, the same three riders who took the top places yesterday repeated their performances. Christopher Hickey and Regent were first with a 70.667 percent, King and Rendezvous 3 were second with a 70.250, and Melissa Taylor and Schumacker placed third with a 68.750 percent. Each horse and rider combination earned the same placings the day before.

In the FEI Grand Prix, Canadas two-time Olympian Ashley Holzer and Pop Art, a 10-year-old Dutch gelding, made their mark on the judges with a colorful and expressive test to earn a 72.813 percent to win the class. Lars Petersen and Succes followed in second place with a 69.063, while Pati Pierruci and Cosaco rounded out the top three placings with a 66.250 percent.

The high performance classes perform the same test as their FEI counterparts, but they are qualifying events for the Intermediaire I National Championships and the Pan Am Games selection trials, both of which will be held in Gladstone, NJ.

Dressage competition will continue through Sunday afternoon, and the action kicks off at 8 a.m. Tomorrows highlights are the USEF HP Grand Prix Special, the FEI Test of Choice, and the Cosequin Dressage/Jumper Spectacular.

PHOTO: Courtney King and Idocus in the USEF HP Grand Prix. Photo: Susan J. Stickle.


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