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Lars Petersen Scores Another Dressage Victory at the 2007 Winter Equestrian Festival

Wellington, FL – February 23, 2007 – The second week of dressage competition at the 2007 Zada Florida Dressage Classic saw the return of Lars Petersen and the great gray Dacardo to the winner’s circle.

The pair scored a 72.083 percent for the win in the FEI Intermediaire I class, section A. Petersen, a native of Denmark, has been paired with Dacardo for about three years, and the horse is owned by Melissa Taylor, who trains with Petersen. The gelding’s extravagant gaits, sensitive manner and presence in the ring make him stand out against all others. He is a 9-year-old Swedish Warmblood.

“He’s getting more and more relaxed now. He’s gone to three shows in a row,” Petersen explained. “It will only take him one day to prepare a little bit for the (PhelpsSports.com/Palm Beach Dressage) Derby next week. He was good today, maybe a little bit rough in the pirouettes, but I don’t think he made any mistakes. He was relaxed in most of the walks, and he actually stood in the halts again today. I’m just happy he’s standing still!”

Petersen noted that he will work to keep the horse supple between now and the Derby, but Dacardo will have a bit of a break. He also said that his plan for the horse’s future might include Taylor competing the horse on the small tour, getting him to show at the grand prix level and making a possible bid for the Danish Olympic team.

It’s no secret that Dacardo is an easily agitated and very hot horse to compete, but Petersen said that his demeanor in the barn is the complete opposite.

“He’s like a dog. He’s so sweet. He’s all over you – really, really sweet in the barn. At the shows, I think he gets scared a lot. When I walk up here, then he’s scared of the golf cart, then he’s scared of a person, and sometimes, he used to be very scared of other horses in the warm-up ring, but that has gone away. So, it’s getting better and better. He just needs to smile and figure out that everything’s not so bad,” Petersen said.

Taking second in the II test was Melissa Jackson and Wellington 248 with a 68.917 percent, and they also placed second on Thursday in the Prix St. Georges test. Third place was earned by Oded Shimoni and Wasmut with a 66.000 percent.

In section B of the Intermediaire I, Lauren Sammis and Sagacious HF repeated their performance from yesterday, again earning the blue ribbon. With a score of 70.750 percent, the pair further solidified their status as a combination to watch in the future. Earning second place was Melissa Taylor and her own Schumaker with a 69.176 percent. Taylor also placed first in the Prix St. Georges yesterday with Schumaker. Rounding out the top three placings in the II divison, section B, was Simone Williams and Wunder Ein with a 67.000 percent.

Taylor was also victorious in the FEI Grand Prix division on Succes with a 66.319 percent. Petersen usually rides the 17.0 hand 12-year-old Danish Warmblood by Blu Hors Silvermoon out of Wapeti, who is by World Cup I. A ribbon ceremony was held to present the top three finishers with their respective ribbons.

In the Third Level Test 2 division, Diane Ritz and Sandro Simian earned the blue ribbon with a 64.103 percent. Second place went to George Williams and Favore with a 63.846 percent, and Ed Borrensen took third on Salvador JP with a 63.718 percent.

Competition in the 2007 Zada Florida Dressage Classic, sponsored by Zada Enterprises LLC, will resume tomorrow morning. Highlights of Saturday’s competition include both Prix St. Georges and Grand Prix Special divisions, which will begin at 8 a.m.

PHOTO CREDIT: Lars Petersen and Dacardo. Photo by Susan J. Stickle.


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