Mannkato winning Prelim Single Horse, Best Prelim Marathon, and overall Prelim Champion.
The championships have come and gone, and we are very proud of Sterling and Ulano’s performance on the world stage! Sterling started the competition with a tough Dressage time draw- early on day one of two of Dressage competition. They finished with a score of 57.47. Team USA finished dressage strongly, putting them in 4th heading into marathon. Saturday proved to be a great day for Sterling, finishing 21st out of 70 drivers including being the fastest in one of the hazards and at the top of the pack in a few others! Unfortunately the rest of the US team did not have as good of day putting them in 8th going into cones. The upward trend continued for Sterling and Ulano on Sunday where they drove a fantastic cones course finishing 10th! Teammate Donna Crookston also had a strong cones run finishing 9th, just in front of Sterling. Factoring in the final strong showing in cones, Team USA moved up to finish 6th out of 19 countries. Sterling finished the weekend 22nd of 70 drivers total, and the top American driver.
This experience could not have happened without the support of everyone that has given not only financially, but with their time and resources towards Sterling and Ulano’s efforts. We cannot say thank you enough for the incredible support!
Look for more detailed accounts from the championships once Sterling has returned home.
The moment we have all been waiting for has arrived- the World Singles Championships! Sterling and Ulano traveled to Portugal from their training base in Germany over the weekend, and are now settled in to the competition grounds. Yesterday evening featured the Nations Dinner where each participating country brought their favorite native dishes to share. Today brought the initial vet inspection which all three US horses passed with flying colors. Following the vet inspection came the official drawing for dressage and marathon times. The team competes at the following times: Dressage Thursday: 9:40 (4:40 am EST) Graburn, 17:00 Crookston, Friday: 14.20 Berndl. Marathon Saturday: 12.00 Berndl, 13.40 (8:40 am EST) Graburn 16.15 Crookston. Cones times will be set after all competitors complete the marathon on Saturday. To follow live results visit: http://www.hoefnet.nl/en/home/site/uitslagen/b4d7e9c3c2fafd67faae77dfedcf3839.
Attached are a few pictures from today’s jog. If you have any messages for Sterling, please either respond to this email or post to the facebook page. A daily results email will be sent until the end of the competition.
Thank you again for all of your support along the way. GO USA!
Sterling and Ulano have had a busy summer. The pair left the country on July 15th, flying into Amsterdam and traveling to their first competition: Beekbergen July 19th – 22nd. Sterling put in a solid performance in dressage, finished the marathon safely, and was ranked 8th in cones, driving a clear round with just some time penalties. That put him in 16th out of 40 drivers for the weekend. He was generally happy with how the show went, and it gave him good information about what he needed to do to improve for the next two competitions.
The second competition was in Beesd, Holland August 2nd – 5th. He started the competition with a strong dressage test ending up 2nd of 22 with a score of 41.39! After completing cones the same day, Sterling sat in 6th going into marathon. Saturday proved to be a good day for Sterling, finishing 4th in marathon (the top American for the day). Michiel Kwinten navigated for him at this show, and Sterling felt much more confident than at Beekbergen with his new Glinkowski Falcon marathon vehicle. Final results for the US competitors were: Sterling 3rd, Donna Crookston 13th, and Sarah Schmidt 16th.
Ulano and Sterling are now at team coach Michael Freund’s farm in Germany for final training prior to Portugal. Sterling reported that training has been going well, even with Coach Freund’s tough cones courses set with only 15 cm clearance! On August 20th, the USEF officially announced that Sterling and Ulano, along with three other US drivers, have been entered for the World Championships.
Thank you all for your support. Only three more weeks until the World Championships!