Champagne Run Wrap Up

A very successful weekend at Champagne Run HT!! 

Nikki and Oliver were brilliant this weekend… At their first training, they had a great dressage test followed by a beautiful 4-fault round in show jumping!!!  It was gorgeous and very well ridden.  They were most of the way around the course and on their way to having their XC run of a lifetime–beautiful jumping!–when an accidental Technical Elimination was awarded by a volunteer jump judge  incorrectly, and were sadly excused from the course accidently.  Not their faults…. They got to return on Sunday to school the course, and started from the start box like at a competition…. And had the most fabulous XC run!!!  Really beautiful…. That’s luck for you…


Vaughn and Jane had a great weekend at their second Training outing.  They had a gorgeous dressage test–quiet, accurate, and submissive, and followed it up by a gorgeous, cadenced show jumping round with just a single rail.  Then the pair jumped CLEAN around the very, very hard Training XC with just 6 time penalties (one of the faster rounds of the day).  All weekend long, their jumping was forward and balanced, and really lovely.  They made light work of the challenging XC!  They finished the weekend in 9th place out of 21 horses!!!  WITH A 9th PLACE RIBBON!

Ashley and Paddy ran their third training this weekend…. Ashley suffered from an unfortunate case of forgetfullness in Dressage, and thus two errors of course really hurt her dressage score.  Like a true fighter, she battled back for the weekend (and why the triathlon sport of eventing is so special) with a foot-perfect Show Jumping round to jump double clean!  Then their courage was really tested…. The horse before them out of the box on XC, ridden by four star rider Jonathon Holling, fell at fence 3, causing a hold on course.  Jon was removed from the course by ambulance.  (Our thoughts & best wishes are with the Holling family–we have not heard how he is doing yet.)  It takes a tremendous amount of tenacity for a young Training rider to be sent next out of the box after a veteran falls… Ashley showed great poise and rocketed around the course brilliantly, jumping everything in style.  Their course was really lovely, and they jumped CLEAN with just 3 time penalties, the fourth fastest round of the division.   They finished 7th in their big division of 21 horses…Talk about battling back! WITH A 7TH PLACE RIBBON!!

Jacquie is one of our newest working students, and she admitted to us that she’s been struggling to complete her novices at home with her horse BJ.  She has only been here for 2 weeks, but has worked REALLY hard to improve it…. And she has succeeded!  She took the “hoping to complete” BJ to Champagne Run, one of the biggest horse trials in the country by number of starters, and did a bit more than complete… Her dressage test was GORGEOUS and scored a 33!!!  Then she jumped a beautiful, forward clear round in show jumping… Now the pressure was really on!  Just 3 points out of the lead, Jacquie held it together to tackle the very challenging XC course and jumped clean!  She finished on her dressage score of 33 in a very impressive result in a division of 23 horses… WITH A 4th PLACE RIBBON!!

Jane rode Basil this weekend as well…. They are a new partnership, but he’s really going to be a neat horse and had some breathtaking moments in dressage.  He was a little fussy after the canter which cost him a score in the 30’s, so he finished just outside of that with a 41 in dressage (not bad for a baby!).  He finished on his dressage score with two great jumping rounds, and in a class of twenty one horses finished WITH A 7th PLACE RIBBON!

Megan rode Visa this weekend, and absolutely fell in love with him.  Ashley has been brilliant with his prep, and he’s a star in the making.  He scored a 43 in dressage, with brilliant trot work but the canter is still very green.  Then he jumped with just a single rail in SJ, and double clean on XC!  In fact, he was so good on XC that he was nearly too efficient and almost earned speed faults… haha…He was in a big class, and still managed to come home WITH A 7th PLACE RIBBON!

Megan also rode Sandy this weekend…. He is going to be really fancy!  He had a good dressage test (but my oh my there is still so much talent to be tapped!) and scored a 37.5 in dressage, just 3 pts off the lead!  His SJ round came in the late afternoon on Saturday, just moments after Megan’s XC on Beef.  Megan developed quite a lot of heat sickness and by the time Sandy needed to show jump, she was beginning to black out from the heat. Sandy was a star and clocked them around SJ while Megan faded in and out of consciousness…. His greenness was very honest, but without much guidance he could only manage a 2-rail round.  It was so kind of him to take care of his rider!  Sunday was much better, with a fast and clear XC round to end him WITH AN 8th PLACE RIBBON! 

Megan also rode Beef this weekend… He was good in the dressage, though my oh my there is still so much room for growth!  Still, he earned a 38 in dressage.  For XC, Megan was starting to get sick and didn’t contribute much to the situation.  Being the great XC horse that he is, he carted them around clean regardless of how his rider felt, and he was a truly honest boy.  All Megan could think was “I have to go fast to make the time on a haflinger.”   Ha!!  Before the final fence, we learned that the haflinger is indeed quite fast when need be, as there was a bit of time scrubbing to be done to avoid speed faults… Now we know Beef can gallop!  SJ was hilarious…  After fence 5, the training/prelim turned right but Novice turned left.  They jumped fence 5 and prepared for a right rollback to fence 6 (after a long weekend of judging many riders at T/P and trying to take care of them) when they realized that the numbers had changed!  Ooops!  Carefully, they turned left without crossing paths, but now several seconds had been lost and the optimum time was very tight as is.  Without further ado, Beef speedily galloped at top speed across the arena down to the triple bar to make up time!  He has such rhythmic gaits that it was easy to find a distance at that speed, and he neatly and tidily cleared the fence in beautiful form.  No time faults!  Just one rail, so he finished WITH A 9th PLACE RIBBON! 

Hannah and Pongo had a stellar weekend…. Hannah is all grown up!  She had brilliant control over her very special little pony, and they had a great time with a 0/0 show jumping round and the most beautiful rhythmical cross country round.  Their speed was just right, and each fence was smooth and easy.  All around her, other kids on their ponies were stopping, falling, and being eliminated, and she simply cruised through course.  Their division had 28 riders in it!  She kept climbing up and up the ladder all weekend with excellent jumping rounds, and they finished WITH A 7th PLACE RIBBON!! 

So are you sensing a theme for the weekend?  Ribbons, ribbons, ribbons!  Thank goodness, ’cause I’m thinking we need some wallpaper for the new apartment walls……     haha….


About widespreadpanic

Advanced level event rider and instructor at Team CEO Eventing in Lexington KY.
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6 Responses to Champagne Run Wrap Up

  1. thehunterkid says:

    Sounds like everyone had a spectacular weekend!
    Spasil Pony looks absolutely phenominal.
    Sandy looks like he needs to be given to me so I can put him in a hunter ring reallyyyy soon. (haha)
    Pongo and Hannah seem to be an absolute force to be reckoned with.
    And Ashley and Paddy as usual, look like they were super stars.

    Congrats to EVERYONE!
    You guys are awesome!

  2. holzeph says:

    Good job everybody! You’re all brave to put up with such awful heat – but you came away with great ribbons. CONGRATS!!!

    (And I have to agree that Sandy is the cutest, fanciest horse ever!)

  3. bzhorse says:

    Congratulations to everyone!!!! I’m so proud of all of y’all for trucking on through the heat and doing so well! Yay for ribbons!

  4. equestriquin says:

    YAY!!! Glad that sticking the heat out paid off. All the pics look BEAUTIFUL!

  5. hfmoore says:

    This was the first event I’ve seen that EVERYONE performed well, and everyone rode to a very high standard. And that includes Nikki, who got slightly screwed by a fence judge who didn’t understand the rules (sorry, I voted FOR that rule, but I can assure you it was fully intended to encompass falls ASSOCIATED WITH A JUMP only!). She proved that when she schooled after the event — when all the others schooling were crashing and burning, another instructor said to Megan, “Wow, who’s that?” and Megan proudly told her “That’s one of ours” — it was Nikki! It’s particularly fun to see our people developing skills and demonstrating them — look at the pictures, on Snapfish or Xpress Foto or wherever. Our guys are in good position, good legs, & they’re SMILING — having fun, which is the name of the game, and demonstrating increasingly excellent skills. Wow, I’m impressed (and I don’t usually say that!).

  6. murphysgreytrooper says:

    Yup – I was all inspired by Team Ceo on Sat at the HP. Congrats to all – you guys rock!! Therefore, my KY Classique entry went in the mail TODAY!! Asked to be stabled next to “the team”. Hoping some of your mo-jo will rub off on me and Troop! Cant wait! – Kim

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