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Telluride Farm's Caitie Hope Scores Top Ribbons at Winter Equestrian Festival

Wellington, FL - January 28, 2009 - This past weekend Diane Carney and her student Caitie Hope traveled to Wellington, FL, to show at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF). Over the weekend Hope worked with Andre Dignelli of Heritage Farm and competed in the equitation classes. Hope resides in Barrington, IL, and trains with Diane Carney at Telluride Farm in Hampshire, IL.

Hope rode Heritage Farm's horse Cadeau in the equitation, and they came away with first place in the WIHS Hunter Phase with a score of 88. They also earned a solid score in the Jumper Phase, finishing eighth overall. Hope then captured second place in the ASPCA Maclay and pinned seventh in the USEF Hunt Seat Medal.

"I couldn't be more pleased with Caitie and our experience with Heritage Farm," commented Carney. "We flew in on Thursday night, and she had a lesson the next morning and started showing at 8 a.m. She got to show a fabulous horse and just nailed the Washington Hunter Phase. She also did well in the USEF Show Jumping Talent Search and was called back for the flat. She rode consistently well in every class, which is really what we're going for this year."

She continued, "The competition was huge, and finishing in the top ten in those classes is great. This was her first time showing in the equitation at WEF, and she arrived ready to compete. My hope for Caitie throughout these past years has been for her to really hit the target when she showed in Wellington. Any time you compete at a big show and are in the ribbons, it is a great sign that you're in a good rhythm and prepared for what's ahead."

This year Hope's main focus is to ride consistently well in the equitation and jumper classes. Carney arranged for her to train with Heritage Farm in Wellington so she could gain more experience in the show ring and learn from Dignelli, one of the top equitation trainers in the industry.

"Heritage Farm is a beautiful operation, and everyone is extremely polite," said Carney. "They have so many horses, but Andre and all of the grooms and staff members really spent a lot of time with us. It was impressive to see that Andre has the ability to run an intense and successful operation, but he is still so available to help."

"From a horsemanship standpoint, Caitie had a lot of lessons and was able to ride horses all day on Saturday. In lessons, Andre worked on reinforcing the basics of riding, all of which make for a beautiful round in the show ring. I think it's very educational for Caitie to take lessons from trainers like Andre and Don Stewart and incorporate that experience into her riding."

Diane Carney and her students will compete next at the Ledges Winter Series in Roscoe, Illinois. They will then show in Ocala, FL, at the HITS Ocala Winter Circuit. Carney and Hope will return to Wellington, FL, later in the season, and Hope will participate in the Equitation Championship.

Carney is based out of Hampshire, IL, at her hunter/jumper show stable, Telluride Farm. She has been both an active participant and influential trainer in the hunter and jumper community for many years. Her contributions to the industry extend to the many clinics that she teaches every year, in addition to those that she hosts annually for U.S. Show Jumping Chef d'Equipe George H. Morris and top hunter/jumper trainer Don Stewart Jr.


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