Articles: Press Release
Weber Finds Time to Win Sixth Consecutive USEF National Four-in-Hand
Championship; Graburn Narrowly Defeats Ying in USEF Single Horse
Championship at Live Oak International
United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
4047 Iron Works Parkway
Lexington, KY 40511-8483
Tel: (859) 258-2472
Fax (859) 231-6662
Web site: www.usef.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 30, 2008
By Joanie Morris
Ocala, FL - Chester Weber added winner and his sixth consecutive USEF
National Championship to his list of titles at the Live Oak Plantation
Combined Driving Event presented by Budweiser. Not only did he win the
FEI Team Horse Division he also played host, presenter, bloodstock
agent, farm manager and competitor.
"I want it seven times because nobody has ever won it seven times," said
Weber of his championship run. "So if I win it seven times in a row
that's some sort of feat."
Weber's beautiful Live Oak Plantation opened its gates to the community
and hosted thousands of spectators over the three days.
"It is without a lot of complications because (organizer) Susan
(Gilliard) is a star at what she does," said Weber. "We have most of the
running of this event worked out in advance. We get everything done
well, well in advance and that makes competing at an event you organize
quite a bit easier."
The CAI-A Ocala, also serves as a USEF Selection Trial for the 2008
Four-in-Hand World Championships to be held in Beesdt, Holland September
"I have one other horse I haven't driven this year at all," said Weber.
"I drove him at Aachen. He's a lead horse in the dressage and that
should help get my scores back under 40. The marathon team is pretty
good, going better and the cones team is good so I feel good about it."
Weber had a significant lead after the dressage and although he was
slightly slower than rival Jimmy Fairclough on the marathon his
performance in the cones was plenty good enough to maintain his lead on
a score of 140.72. Para, Jamaica, Senate and Boy put on a very confident
display in the cones, the phase Weber considers to be this teams
strongest. Fairclough remained second.
The second USEF National Championship followed the teams and the cones
proved influential in the hotly contested Single Horse division. Also a
selection for the 2008 World Driving Championships to be held in
Jarantow, Poland August 28-31.
Marathon winner Sterling Graburn put in a dynamite double clear round in
the cones which put the pressure on his girlfriend Wendy Ying who was
the two-day leader. Ying also drove an awesome round with her horse but
had a mistake at the last set of cones to bring her final score to
134.54 just over a point behind her boyfriend.
"I was really happy with my cones," said Graburn who finished on 132.82.
"I've had issues with the cones in the past. Mostly horse issues but I
had to convince people that it wasn't me. He's a much better horse and
he's given me a lot of confidence driving cones."
Graburn and Ying's horses are 3/4 brothers, by a Welsh Cob stallion out
of mares that are half sisters, the matching 'sport cobs' as Ying has
dubbed them put on impressive displays all weekend in all three phases.
"It's fun because Wendy and I are a couple, the horses are brothers and
we have champion and reserve champions in the same house and the same
barn," said Graburn of his first national championship title.
Ying, Graburn and David Schneider were also the winners of the
unofficial team competition sponsored by Bill Peacock. 'Team Purple' was
impressive and took home the champagne for their efforts.
In the FEI Team Pony division two-day leader Lisa Stroud maintained her
command of the division with a stellar cones performance with her team
of grey Connemara ponies. The West Grove, PA driver finished on a score
of 152.18, closely followed by Boots Wright who was second
"They are always fabulous, they save me," said Stroud. "These ponies
make me look good."
Stroud didn't appear to need saving, she drove a very confident cones
phase, something she has been working on over the last year.
"It is a little bit nerve racking," said Stroud. "I've had a good year
in cones. I was second at the worlds in cones under duress so I am much
more confident about it. Success breeds success. I have a lot of
confidence in this team and I thought this was a great course. I like a
challenging cones course."
Larry Poulin and his immaculate pair drove confidently in the FEI Pair
Horse division and was less than a point behind overnight Keady Cadwell
going into the cones. Both drivers had two obstacles down and Cadwell
exceeded the time but her score of 131.4 was enough to hold the lead and
give the experienced driver another victory.
Cadwell, of Southern Pines, NC drove Splash and Unique accurately all
weekend and she maintained her composure after making a mistake at the
very first set of cones. Splash, a 5-year-old KWPN was fascinated by his
surroundings but maintained his composure.
"I'm very happy with my horses," said Cadwell. "I drove my five-year-old
and he went in there and first he said, 'this is a lot of people and
there are a lot of tents and then he said I get the hang of this. He's
going to be really good at cones."
The Cadwell name is synonomus with driving and Keady's sister Miranda
wasn't to be outdone by sibling rivalry. They train and drive together
and the Cadwells grew up in Pennsylvania with Graburn. With a score of
129.4 'Randy' convincingly won the FEI Single Pony Division with Kabaam,
a 5-year-old, that has had great success since he began driving last
"Actually the cones is the phase that I get the most nervous before but
I don't know why because I've always driven the cones fine but I get
very nervous," said Randy.
Kabaam has plenty of personality and he is going to join a pair to learn
a bit more about the marathon from one of Cadwell's World Championship
team from 2007.
"He's a bit of a ham," said Randy. "He's fun to be around. He's cheeky,
he knows he's the man. This is his fifth show ever."
For complete results please see: www.cailiveoak.com
, for more information please contact
Joanie Morris, USEF High Performance Communications manager at:
The vision of the United States Equestrian Federation(r) is to provide
for equestrian sport in the United States of America by promoting the
of excellence from the grassroots to the Olympic Games, based on a
foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare
of its human and equine athletes.