Dwyer wins Grade IV class in Florida

  • 20 January 2012, 10:34

AT the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center in Wellington, Florida, the Gold Coast Dressage Opener CPEDI3* commenced today (Friday), with Ireland’s James Dwyer winning the Grade IV class.

Twenty-three para-equestrian dressage riders from seven countries vied for top scores under F.E.I. judges Carlos Lopes (POR), Hanneke Gerritsen (NED), and Marc Urban (BEL).

For two weekends, beginning with the Gold Coast Dressage Opener CPEDI3* and ending with the Wellington Classic Sunshine Challenge CPEDI3*, para-equestrian dressage riders have the opportunity to earn their qualifying scores and increase their international rankings before the 2012 London Paralympics.

For each country the next two weekends will mark the closeout of the team rankings before London. Dueling for the top positions in Friday’s Team Test were Canada and the United States.

Competition will continue Saturday with the Individual Test, and end Sunday with the Freestyle competition followed by the awards ceremony.

Excelling in Grade IV today with a winning score of 68.75% was Ireland’s James Dwyer and his gelding Orlando.

James remarked afterwards: “I was overall pretty happy with my ride today. There are a few little things here and there that we need to work on but overall he was really good and I couldn’t have asked for more.”

Like many of the para-equestrian dressage competitors James will stay through the two weeks of competition.  After a short break he will head to Europe with Orlando where he will show in France, Belgium, and Germany in preparation for the 2012 Selection Trials.

As the weekend continues riders from the United States, Canada, Ireland, Finland, Bermuda, Japan, and Mexico will compete in Saturday’s Individual competition followed by Sunday’s Freestyle and awards ceremony.

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