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Joe Craver Rides to the Lead in Phase One of the 2023 Platinum Performance/USEF Show Jumping Talent Search Finals - East

by Kim Beaudoin | Oct 6, 2023, 7:00 PM

Gladstone, N.J. – The 2023 Platinum Performance/USEF Show Jumping Talent Search Finals – East kicked off on Friday with the first phase of the competition, bringing 46 youth athletes to the USET Foundation Headquarters to test their talents on the flat.

Joe Craver
Joe Craver and Franco. ©KTB Creative Group

Athletes entered the ring in groups of five and were asked to perform various movements on the flat in front of judges Anne Kursinski and Ronnie Beard, including leg yields, shoulder-in, haunches-in, working walk, trot, and canter, lengthening of stride at the trot, extended canter, and counter canter. The flat phase allowed athletes to demonstrate their correctness of aids, position, and seat and provided judges with an opportunity to document the first scores of the Final.

Joe Craver (Shelby, N.C.) rode his own 2012 Holsteiner gelding Franco (Corsy Z x Frangelico) to the day's top score after a skillful ride, earning a 91 from judges. Luke Jensen (Denton, Texas) and Morgan Wilsberg's 2016 Oldenburg mare Calina M (Cador x La Luna M) sit second with a 90, while Caroline Olsen (Sherborn, Mass.) and Olsen LLC's 2016 Oldenburg gelding Spark of Phoenix (Absolut Schnied x Stakkato) hold third with an 89.

The competition continues Saturday at 10:00 a.m. ET with Phase II, the gymnastic phase testing athletes over a series of gymnastic lines and has a score multiplier of 1.5. The competition concludes on Sunday, starting at 9:00 a.m. ET with Phase III, the jumping phase, featuring a jumper-style course and a score multiplier of 2. The total of the scores from the first three phases is used to determine the top four who will return for Phase IV, the ride-off in which they will swap horses and ride the same course on each of the final four horses to determine the final placings.

On Sunday, October 8, the third annual Hollow Brook Junior Sportsmanship Award will be awarded, recognizing a junior rider who best personifies the highest standards of integrity, sportsmanship, honor, kindness, and generosity during the 2023 Platinum Performance/USEF Show Jumping Talent Search Finals - East. The winner will be announced with a presentation taking place during the award ceremony at the conclusion of the event. Nominations may be submitted by Finals athletes as well as their trainers and families and will be accepted through 2 p.m. ET on Saturday, October 2. Click here to submit a nomination.

Phase I Results

Event Website | Schedule and Results

US Equestrian fans, subscribers, and members can watch the Platinum Performance/USEF Show Jumping Talent Search Finals – East on USEF Network powered by ClipMyHorse.TV. Not a member? Join now.

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The USEF International High Performance Programs and the USEF High Performance Pathway Programs are generously supported by the USET Foundation, the philanthropic partner to USEF. High Performance Program support is also provided by the USOPC and USEF sponsors and members.