Articles: Press Release
Reed Kessler, Combined Zone Triumphant at the 2009 USEF National Junior
United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 11, 2009
Harrisburg, PAThis years USEF National Junior Jumper Championships proved
yet again to be one of the most exciting junior competitions of the
year. The Team Championship was held Friday night with the Individual
Championship accumulating scores over three days of competition at the 64th
Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg, PA, from October 8-11.
The Team Championship was run under a modified Nations Cup format and
designed by 2008 Olympic course designer Steve Stevens of Wellington,
FL. The competition began with seven teams representing various zones
throughout the country. At the end of the second round, it was clear that
Zone 2 (comprised of New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey) would bring home
the Bronze medal with their squad of Jessica Springsteen aboard Vornado Van
Den Hoendrik, Jacqueline Lubrano aboard El Regresso Congo, Alexandra
Thornton aboard Naomi and Reed Kessler aboard Ice DAncoeur.
However, it was the jump-off for the Gold between Zones 10 and the combined
team of Zones 1 (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode
Island and Vermont) and Zone 8 (Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado and Utah) that
kept the crowd on the edge of its seat with suspense. Each of the tied teams
was invited to send one rider to compete over a shortened course in which
time would decide between equality of faults.
First in the ring was Lucy Davis with True Love representing Zone 10 under
the direction of chef dequipe Graeme Butch Thomas, and they had a perfect
fault-free round in 33.409 seconds. Next up was Victoria Birdsall with
Jerremy representing Zone 1 under the direction of John Brennan, and they
were close. But, it was the last fence of the evening that gave the combined
team of Zones 1 and 8 four faults and solidified the Gold medal for Zone 10.
The final event of this years championship was the Individual
Final. Fifteen-year-old Reed Kessler aboard Ice DAncoeur from Armonk, NY,
held the lead throughout the three days of competition with a final score of
4.0 to bring home the Gold medal. The first nights speed class (where time
was converted into points), followed by the addition of scores from both
rounds of the Team Championship, led to the top 60% of individuals being
invited back for the Individual Final. Kessler was skillful in guiding her
11-year-old chestnut mare through the paces.
"Winning this is great. I feel like I did everything I came here to do, said
Keller. It is a long four rounds, and she [Ice DAncoeur] was just as good
today as she was the first day.
Lucy Davis of Los Angeles, CA, finished with a score of 6.25 and took home
the Silver medal. San Franciscos Saer Coulter aboard Chalan finished up with
a final score of 8.07 to take home the Bronze medal.
The vision of the United States Equestrian Federation 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.