Record-Setting Competition Comes to a Close at Great American/USDF Region 7 & California Dressage Society Championships

After four days, six rings, and nearly 1500 rides scheduled to come down centerline, final championship titles were awarded Sunday and the competition officially entered the record books as the largest edition in the 47-year history of the Annual California Dressage Society (CDS) Championship Show, held in conjunction with the Great American Insurance Group/USDF Region 7 Dressage Championships, September 25 - 28, 2014 in Burbank, Cal.

"This Championship show has been great.  The turnout has been unbelievable, the level of competition has been amazing, and everyone has worked so well together to make this show happen," said CDS President Kevin Reinig.  "I think dressage is thriving in California and this show is a reflection of that trend.  There's a lot of excitement in the sport, new horses and fresh faces, and that makes it very exciting.  I'd like to thank all the competitors, the CDS Chapters, the CDS Executive Board, and the show management and officials for all coming together to make this a record-setting show such a success.  And most of all we couldn't have done this without the volunteers who put in long hours to get the job done."

Great American Insurance Group/USDF Region 7 Championships concluded today, and in a hotly-contested Open First Level Championship, the top three placings were separated by less than two-tenths of a point.  But ultimately emerging victorious was Kim Elsner of Moorpark, Cal. riding Teri Young's bay PRE mare Nexus GG to the top score of 71.694%.  Jan Ebeling and Anne Romney's Hanoverian gelding Bakari have been unbeatable at Open Fourth Level this weekend, winning today's Region 7 Championship on a score of 72.875% while hometown rider Khara Johnson of Los Angeles rode her Westfalen gelding Furst Dance to a decisive win the Adult Amateur division with a score of 72.875%.  Mette Rosencrantz of Topanga, Cal. and Anne Solbraekke's elegant Hanoverian gelding De Noir 3 have earned multiple FEI wins in the small tour, and today they added the Open Intermediaire I Championship to their resume on a score of 71.382%.  Meanwhile in the Adult Amateur division, Adrienne Bessey of Thousand Oaks added an Intermediaire I Regional Championship title to Friday's CDS Horse of the Year Prix St. Georges victory by earning a score of 70.329% on her Danish mare Dido. 

Juniors and Young Riders also competed across multiple Region 7 championship divisions.  Shelby Rocereto of Livermore, Cal. and her Dutch mare Chapeau scored a top First Level score of 73.548% while Paris Richman (Monte Nido, Cal.) rode her Hessen gelding Il Primo Toscano to victory with a score of 63.782% at Third Level.  Paige Dobbie (Moorpark, Cal.) competed with her Dutch gelding Romulus to win the JR/YR Prix St. Georges Region 7 Championship with 68.092%, while Genay Vaughn of Elk Grove also finished off her weekend with a win in the JR/YR Grand Prix division aboard Starr Vaughn Eq. Inc.'s Hanoverian stallion Donarweiss GGF (65.450%).  In the USEF Dressage Seat Medal Semi-Final (13 and under division), Alexa Brown and her adorable Haflinger gelding Tigger charmed the judges with their dressage skills for a winning score of 78.000%.  Already the recipient of yesterday's CDS Equitation Challenge trophy, Kelsea Nataren of Chino Hills, Cal. and her Welsh gelding ME Imagine also won this afternoon's 14-18 Dressage Seat Medal Semi-Final on a score of 76.000%.

The last round of coveted CDS Horse of the Year titles were awarded, and in a hard-fought battle for the CDS Open Training Level Horse of the Year honors Kristina Harrison of Burbank and her four-year-old Dutch gelding Finley earned big marks in the second of two tests to take the overall lead and the Peter and Bonnie Lert Perpetual Trophy with a score of 75.063%.  Tiffany Mahoney of Rancho Santa Fe, Cal. also scored a come-from-behind victory with her Oldenburg mare Sans Souci DE in the Adult Amateur Training Level championship to earn an overall 71.436% and claim the Melissa Creswick Perpetual Trophy.  The Full Cry Perpetual Trophy for Adult Amateur First Level was awarded to Kate Mullen (Livermore, Cal.) who earned a huge score in the first of two classes and  couldn't be caught with Kelly Casey's Dutch mare Elnieta to finish with 72.926%.  Lisa Bradley (Aliso Viejo, Cal.) and her Oldenburg mare Finesse have been unbeatable this week, scoring another victory today at Second Level for Adult Amateurs and the Two-Tone Malone Trophy for CDS Horse of the Year on an overall score of 72.404%.  Adult amateur Alix Curry will drive north to her home in Pescadero, Cal. with the Stanford Dressage Club Trophy for Third Level thanks to a winning performance with her Rheinlander gelding Don Frederic (71.817%), while Carrie Rasmussen of Simi Valley, Cal. claimed the Fox Run Perpetual Trophy at Fourth Level with her Hanoverian mare Dolce Bella (68.168%). Jan Ebeling of Moorpark, Cal. expertly guided the talented Oldenburg gelding Santo Domingo to an average score of 73.197% and a huge win over 32 other entries in the CDS Open Third Level Horse of the Year division, earning his second title of the weekend and the Judith Elias Perpetual Trophy for owner Anne Romney. 

Kelly Krambs of Paso Robles, Cal. is now two-for-two at the Adult Amateur Grand Prix level, riding her Danish gelding Rampart to the Region 7 Championship yesterday and today winning CDS Horse of the Year honors and the Rubinstein Memorial Trophy on a score of 60.150%.  Canadian native Monica Houweling is a successful competitor at California shows, and today she earned the Pelton Family Trophy for Open Intermediaire B with her longtime FEI partner Rifradin (69.643%), while in the Adult Amateur division, Brianna Dutton (Walnut Creek, Cal.) rode her Dutch gelding Tibet to another blue ribbon at this level with a score of 65.417%.  In the Intermediaire I Freestyle, Jamie Pestana of Livermore and her Hanoverian gelding Winzalot continued their winning ways by earning the Lilian Van Dahn Trophy on an impressive score of 74.462%.

Juniors and young riders also competed for top honors in their CDS Horse of the Year divisions.  Isabella Macchioni of Livermore earned the top spot in the Training Level division with a winning two-test average of 70.350% with her Hanoverian gelding Danatelo, while Shelby Rocereto and Chapeau scored their second win of the day, this time at Second Level with 70.085%.  At Third Level, Ashlynn DeGroot of Hanford, Cal. rode DG Bar Ranch's lovely KWPN mare DG Bantana to a winning performance and an overall two-test average score of 71.737%, while NAJYRC veteran Mackinzie Pooley (Coto de Caza, Cal.) topped the Fourth Level championship on a combined score of 68.644% with her lovely black Oldenburg mare Starlet M.

CDS Horse of the Year Freestyle titles were awarded for First, Second, Third and the Intermediaire levels.  Stacy Williams will drive back to Ivins, Utah with the First Level Freestyle championship she earned with 69.083% aboard her Wesfalen gelding Frisco Bay.  After earning the USDF Region 7 Second Level Freestyle championship on Thursday, Sundi Prechtl of Riverside, Cal. today also earned the CDS equivalent with her own Lusitano stallion Dotango on a score of 74.00%, while yesterday's Junior Team Test Champion Brianna Relucio of San Ramon, Cal. earned another victory with her Hanoverian gelding Wynsum, this time in the CDS Third Level Freestyle with 70.417%. 

Complete daily results, schedules, and additional competition information about the California Dressage Society Championship Show is available on the CDS website,