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First WEG Selection Event Fritzens CDI, Austria

The Fritzens CDI, our first selection event for the WEG, could not have been set in more beautiful surroundings. Held on the magnificent property of the Swarovski family amidst the Austrian Alps, the spectacular mountains made a stunning backdrop to the competition arena.

All the horses from Stall Kittel arrived in good shape, and it was great to catch up with the other Aussie riders, Maree Tomkinson and Kristy Oatley. All horses went through the vet check and looked fit and well.

My first start was the Prix St George with Boogie Woogie. It was a very strong field with some extra interest as the American team riders had some small tour horses as well. Most notably was the very elastic moving young mare of Steffen Peters, Rosamunde. Rosamunde put in a rhythmic smooth test, and she really looks the part to become a top GP horse. The other stand out was Dorothee Schneider’s Showtime, also a stunning type with super elasticity and engagement. Steffen was the eventual winner with a great score of 75.105% just ahead of Dorothee with 74.789%.

Boogie Woogie was a little distracted both in the warm-up and the test, and called out to his friends several times. However, he still had some very nice highlights and as he settled towards the end of the test, he gave me a really good feeling. He placed with a score just under 70% so it was a nice start to the show, and good to get rid of some nerves before the Grand Prix.

All five Australian riders did a super job, and with one more selection event to go, with Deauville in three weeks, the pressure is still on. The scores are quite close so it can go any way. For me it was a great result. A personal best and cracking the 70% barrier was a satisfying achievement. I wish our riders the best. Cheers Mary


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