Don Principe Dances at the Devon CDI
While Dressage at Devon is always a special show for Team Hilltop, this year the CDI division held particular significance for us. Michael Bragdell, Hilltop’s Trainer, competed in his first CDI Grand Prix and Freestyle with Marydell Farm’s wonderful stallion Don Principe. The Friday Grand Prix showed lots of expression and power with particularly good pirouettes. Bobbles in the changes were expensive in terms of scoring, but the overall effort earned a 62.26% and advanced Michael into Saturday’s Freestyle. Don Principe’s freestyle was designed by Marlene Whitaker and is based on the powerful music Tusk by Fleetwood Mac. This was Michael’s first freestyle ever, but he and Don Principe rose to the occasion and put down a great performance. They earned a 67.375% and finished in 10th place – an excellent start at their first CDI together. Thank you to Maryanna and Wendell Haymon for encouraging Michael and Don Principe to make this leap. Congratulations Michael – we’re so proud of you!
Chris Hickey and Cabana Boy added another national title to their resume by winning the 2009 USEF National Developing Horse Dressage Championship on August 21-23. The past two years, Chris and Cabana had traveled to Kentucky to compete in and win the 5 Year Old and 6 Year Old National Young Horse Dressage Championships, making them the first pair to win all three.
The 2008 USEF/Markel Young Horse Nationals was literally a whirlwind weekend for the Hilltop Team with trainers Michael Bragdell riding Selten HW (Sandro Hit - Hohenstein) to the Four Year-Old Grand Champion and Chris Hickey riding Cabana Boy (Contucci - Bordeaux) to successfully defend his National Champion title, this time in the Six Year Old division.
Hilltop Articles & Interviews
A Sport Horse Handler, whether at a show, inspection or exhibition, constantly strives for that 'magical moment' as he guides a horse in hand around the arena, often negotiating a large triangle formed from flower pots and jump poles. Together the two lift off and eat up the ground, matching stride for stride -- the horse seeming to float, to collect and extend on his own, all in perfect rhythm. The handler is as discreet as possible so that all attention focuses on the horse looking his best.
Whether you are learning about showing your horse in hand or just looking for some tips, this excerpt from the 2015 USDF Sport Horse Breeders/Handlers Seminar is for you – Showing Sport Horses In Hand with Michael Bragdell.