Gothenburg, Sweden – With poise and grace, the U.S. dressage combinations trotted down centerline on Friday ready to represent American dressage. Their hard work and dedication paid off, resulting in all three combinations placing in the top eight in the FEI Dressage World Cup™ Final Grand Prix. Laura Graves and Verdades led the way for the U.S., placing second on 80.109% closely behind Germany’s Isabel Werth.
Graves (Geneva, Fla.) and her own and Curt Maes’s 17-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding found their rhythm in the large Scandinavium Arena in front of a knowledgeable Swedish audience.
“I thought [feeling super]. He was super rideable today,” said Graves. “I think tomorrow will be an interesting competition for everyone, and, hopefully, my horse gives me the same great feeling that he did today … I feel really, really confident in how we have prepared him for this competition.”
Kasey Perry-Glass (Wellington, Fla.) was first in the order for the U.S., riding Goerklintgaards Dublet, Diane Perry’s 16-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding. Giving the Swedish audience their first look at the U.S. dressage combinations at this FEI Dressage World Cup Final, Perry-Glass put in a nearly flawless test. With beautiful canter work, the combination finished in fourth place on a score of 77.267%.
In her FEI Dressage World Cup Final debut, Adrienne Lyle (Wellington, Fla.) expertly guided Betsy Juliano LLC’s Salvino in his very first indoor test. The 12-year-old Hanoverian stallion proved his spot among the final contenders, earning a 75.326% and the eighth-place tie with the Netherland’s Hans Peter Minderhoud.
“It is an exciting thing for us,” said Graves of the U.S. dressage contingent. “We are all under 35 [years old], and I think that is really exciting for us as Americans. To have three young women who have brought along these horses, and really have the drive and motivation to keep doing it with other horses for this team, that is exciting for us. I am really proud of every ride that we have put forward, and to be really stamping our American training on these horses.”
Competition concludes on Saturday, April 6, with the FEI Dressage World Cup Final Freestyle to name the 2019 FEI Dressage World Cup Final champion. Watch it live on FEI TV beginning at 10:00 a.m. ET.
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