The sky is the limit for Sky Moon after finishing first in Dutta Corp. USEA YEH Five-Year-Old Championship

October 14, 2022

The sky is the limit for Sky Moon after finishing first in Dutta Corp. USEA YEH Five-Year-Old Championship

Sky Moon and Boyd Martin. Photo USEA/Meagan DeLisle

Weather conditions were drastically different on Friday as 5-year-olds took center stage for the Dutta Corp Coastal Championships. USEA Young Event Horse East (YEH) 2022 presented by Dubarry. Under the bright sun, talented young horses showed what they were made of in front of judges Marilyn Payne and Martin Plewa to demonstrate their show jumping, cross-country and galloping abilities. With 49 horses in the field, the competition was fierce, but it was finally Patricia Luttgen’s Trakehner gelding, Sky Moon (EH Sixtus x Pr. St. Sky Lady) ridden by Boyd Martin, who took the lead in the peloton with an aggregate score of 84.29.

Martin partnered with the young horse in 2019 after being invited to Neumunster, Germany for the two-year Trakenher license. “I met a lady there called Pat Luttgen who was crazy enough to buy the horse at auction and it was a wonderful journey to watch this horse start and go through the whole process of training him, going at his first show and then on this. It’s been a dream run with this guy,” he said.

“To be honest, at four years old, I thought he looked a bit clumsy,” Martin continued. “This year he has grown, matured and become much more athletic. I really expect a lot from this animal. He has everything you could want from a horse – he is brave, he has movement, he jumps and he gallops like the wind. It’s a long process with young horses. We always have to be very careful what we choose because we hope to get them to five stars eventually and you need a horse that has a number of great attributes. He has a great sense of bravery and stamina and stamina, so we’ll see where his future goes. But I’m just very, very grateful that Pat trusted me that crazy night in Neumunster. It was a brave woman who bought him and I am very grateful to her for having placed him with us because he is a leading animal.

Sky Moon and Boyd Martin. Photo USEA/Meagan DeLisle

As if all of Sky Moon’s admirable qualities weren’t enough to drive Martin crazy, the young horse has one more ace in his pocket: “He’s actually related to Tsetserleg,” Martin comments with a smile. “He already has a special place with me because there’s a bit of Thomas in him.” Tsetserleg TSF of the Turner family is a 15-year-old Trakehner gelding (Windfall x Thabana) who has accompanied Martin twice to the World Equestrian Games and the Tokyo Olympics.

As one of the last horses to compete on Friday afternoon, the remarkable chestnut gelding trotted into the infield and immediately caught the attention of onlookers. The horse placed 12th after dressage with a score of 16.12 out of a possible 20 but shone in the conformation phase leading the big pack with an 8.97. With one rail down, Sky Moon scored 10.80 in the jumping phase, but redeemed himself by scoring a 26.40 in the cross-country phase and received the top rating. overall jump from the judges on a score of 13.20. As Sky Moon opened up for a beautiful, expressive gallop at the end of her test, everyone in the ring took notice of her presence, including the judges.

Adorrado and Michael Pendleton. Photo USEA/Meagan DeLisle

Adorrado (Adagio de Talm x Chiava), Kara Angulo’s Holsteiner gelding who was ridden by Michael Pendleton, was Adorrado (Adagio de Talm x Chiava). Adorrado’s dressage score of 16.9 placed the young horse ninth and he scored an 8.11 in conformation. In today’s show jumping rounds he scored 12.00 in show jumping and 25.80 in cross country, giving him a total score of 83.54 after taking into account its overall impression ratings.

Hanoverian gelding Top Carrera (by Carridam PJ), owned by Mackenzie Lea and ridden by Gabby Dickerson, came in third with a combined score of 83.31. The judges ranked the gelding first in the cross-country portion of the judging with a score of 27.30. Added to his dressage score of 16.42, conformation score of 8.14, show jumper score of 11.40 and overall impression scores, his cross country score was exactly what he wanted. needed to rank in the top three.

Top Carrera and Gabby Dickerson. Photo USEA/Meagan DeLisle

Payne and Plewa were delighted with the quality of the horses shown before them today. With such a large field to judge, they needed to have a clear idea of ​​what they were looking for in the top horses ahead of time. For Plewa, the conformation phase played a big role in identifying which horses had what it took to be future five-star mounts.

“I was really impressed with how well the ligaments were,” he said. “And even when they’re standing right in front of you, you might get an idea if he could be a really good competition horse. They look like an athletic partner and most horses have shown this when ridden cross-country and galloping. So it was quite interesting that the conformation, and in particular the score for the type of the horse, showed that he was in line with the potential when they were doing cross country, that was really impressive.

Payne shared that when looking at these young event horses, she was looking for a long-legged horse with a naturally upward balance. “A gaze of eagles,” she said. “When they jump, we want it to look effortless. That they could easily do the job and land in a balance and land.

Whiskey Chaser and Kaitlin Clasing. Photo USEA/Meagan DeLisle

The Born in America Award and American Thoroughbred Award went to this year’s Thoroughbred Incentive Program Champion for the Five-Year-Old Championship, Whiskey Chaser (Danza x Electrick Kitty), owned by Kaitlin Clasing and Elizabeth Brothers , and edited by Clasing. Whiskey Chaser finished sixth overall with a score of 82.40.

The final prize of the day, the Safe Harbor Award, went to Magdalene (Manhattan x Gideon’s Gracie), Magnolia Sport Horse’s Westphalian mare, ridden by Joa Sigsbee. The Safe Harbor Award is given to the young horse that consistently exhibits the most graceful, rider-friendly performance throughout the competition.

Madeleine and Joa Sigsberg. Photo USEA/Meagan DeLisle

In addition to top honors, competitors in the Dutta Corp. USEA YEH are vying for the opportunity to qualify for the Holekamp/Turner scholarship. The Holekamp/Turner Scholarship is awarded to the horse with the highest score at the USEA Young Event Horse Championships in their five-year year. The horse must be fully qualified to compete in the 7-year-old championship in its 7th year in order to receive the grant. If the highest scoring YEH horse at the YEH Championships that year does not qualify or cannot attend, then the grant is awarded to the next highest scoring horse that is qualified and able to compete.

In order to provide Team USA horses with a means to excel at the highest levels of the sport of eventing, The Holekamp/Turner Grant was founded by Timothy and Cheryl Holekamp of New Spring Farm and Christine and TJ Turner of Indian Creek Farm in 2015, award recipients who are raised in North America a full cash grant of $17,500. If the winner is an imported horse, he will receive $8,000. If the top 5-year-old scorer does not qualify or is unable to attend the Mondial du Lion, the money will be awarded to the second-highest scorer who is qualified, able and willing to attend.

In an effort to make this opportunity more accessible to participants in the sport, The Dutta Corporation, the title sponsor of the USEA YEH Championships, is also generously providing round-trip airfare to France for the Mondial du Lion. This prize will be awarded to the recipient of the Holekamp/Turner scholarship. The scholarship and award recipient must be fully qualified to compete at Mondial du Lion.

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About the USEA Young Event Horse Program

The Young Event Horse (YEH) program was established in 2004 as a search for eventing talent. Like similar programs in Europe, the YEH program was designed to identify young horses between the ages of four and five, who possess the talent and disposition to, with proper training, excel at the highest levels of the sport. The ultimate goal of the program is to single out horses with the potential to compete at the four and five star levels, but many fine horses that excel at the lower levels are also featured by the program.

The YEH program provides an opportunity for breeders and owners to show the potential of their young horses while encouraging the breeding and development of the best competition horses for the future. The program rewards horses that are educated and prepared in a correct and progressive manner. During the qualifying events, the young people perform a dressage test and a jumping/galloping/general impression phase. During the Championships, young horses are also evaluated on their conformation in addition to the dressage test and the jumping/cantering/general impression phase. Click here to learn more about the Young Event Horse program.

USEA would like to thank Bates Saddles, SmartPak, Standlee Premium Products, Parker Equine Insurance, Capital Square, Kerrits and The Jockey Club for sponsoring the Young Event Horse program. Additionally, the USEA would like to thank The Dutta Corp., title sponsor of the Young Event Horse Championships.

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