Horse and pony - site index.Horse chat message boards.Horse breeds, types and breeding gallery.Search for horse information on Equiworld.Horse information and equestrian news horse and pony magazine.Horse web links.  

Markus Beerbaum And Royal Discovery Win $60,000 Idle Dice Classic

Jeffery Welles And Roberto Coins Appassionata Win Young Jumper - 7 Year Olds

WELLINGTON, FL – February 22, 2004 – Markus Beerbaum, 33, of Thedirghausan, Germany, rode Royal Discovery owned by Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Firestone to the win in the $60,000 Idle Dice Classic presented by the Palm Beach Post, CSI-W today at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida. The class was a qualifying competition for the FEI World Cup Final that will be held April 21-24, 2004, in Milan, Italy. Beerbaum was the fastest of three double-clear performances. Chris Kappler of Pittstown, New Jersey, placed second riding Royal Kaliber. Leopold Van Asten of The Netherlands earned third place aboard VDL Groep Fleche Rouge. Mehves Trak of Germany designed the course.

A field of 36 riders took the test over the Round One track that saw four riders retire on course. The track was the biggest of the four Grand Prix courses contested so far this season at WEF according to Beerbaum who has vied for the win in each unsuccessfully until today. He singled out the most difficult element of Round One as the triple combination at Fence No. 9 because of its position on the far side of the ring on the rail near the crowd and that it rode differently from most of the riders’ assessments during the course walk. “We thought it was kind of a nice distance but it wasn’t really. The distance to it was a little short. People got stuck at A and then B was too far away.” Indeed 21 riders failed to jump it clear. Four riders went clean and moved on to the Jump-Off.

Molly Ashe of Wellington, Florida, led off with Resolute owned by Rosewood Glen Ltd., but had a refusal at the double, and chalked up eight faults in 47.18 seconds. Van Asten was next to go and set the pace with a clear trip in 40.29. Kappler and Royal Kaliber edged them out of the top spot with their time of 38.44. Going last in the tiebreaker, Beerbaum blistered the short course in 35.78 for the win. Prize money for first place was $18,000.

Beerbaum acknowledged that the jump-off order worked in his favor. “Yes, that’s always an advantage. You know what you have to do to beat the winning time. I had a chance to watch Chris at the gate and Alison Firestone was watching for me the whole jump-off. She told me where I could cut corners. Down the first line I did one less [stride than Kappler] and then I was ahead all the way around actually.” Beerbaum even managed to pull off a double rub, rocking both elements of the combination, and admitted he was lucky today. “Yes, definitely, but to win you need luck these days.” Beerbaum has six horses in Florida for his American owners and will compete for two more weeks here, and then return to Germany to help wife Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum prepare for the Olympics. Beerbaum said he is not a contender for Athens.

In the jump-off, Kappler said that he went all out with the 12-year-old Dutch stallion Royal Kaliber owned by Kathy Kamine and was not saving him for another agenda. “I certainly don’t like losing. No, when I’m in it with him [Beerbaum], he’s a live entry. I always try to go for it, for sure.” Kappler explained that he tried to get an angle from the first fence to the second in seven strides, but ended up doing eight, and then was slow to the third fence on the short course, but he praised his mount, “He was much better after that. He was brilliant today.” Kappler earned $12,000 for second place and points in the World Cup Standings. Of seven qualifiers, today’s class marked the third for the East Coast League.

With five countries represented today – USA, Germany, Argentina, Australia, and The Netherlands – it was a preview of international competition to come and an introduction to a rider new to the Florida circuit – the reigning Dutch Champion for the outdoor season in Europe, 27-year-old Leopold Van Asten. With VDL Groep as his sponsor, this rider made his debut in the Internationale Arena last week aboard VDL Groep Spiga. Today’s class was only his fourth round on VDL Groep Fleche Rouge owned by Stoeterij Duyselshof, an 11-year-old Selle Francais mare by Papillon Rouge that he’s had the ride on since December. “I showed her for the first time last week. I did three rounds and it felt very good and that’s why I competed her today. Today went great again.” Van Asten said the mare, formerly ridden by Samantha McIntosh, is his Olympic prospect. Van Asten earned $6,000 for today’s performance.

A three-time Team Gold Medalist at the World Championships, Beerbaum has won the Idle Dice Classic before – he also rode Royal Discovery to the win in 2002. Royal Discovery is a 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding that competed in the Sydney Olympics with New Zealander Samantha McIntosh who now rides for Bulgaria. It was almost a déjà vu result for Kappler too, who placed second behind Beerbaum in 2002. “Yes, he beat me two years ago in the same class. I was second with Rafiki,” said a smiling Kappler. “His brother beat me in Aachen.” And Beerbaum jovially rejoined, “He beat me many times too!”

Jeffery Welles And Roberto Coins Appassionata Win Young Jumper - 7 Year Olds

In earlier competition in the Internationale Arena today, Jeffery Welles of Pound Ridge, NY, riding Roberto Coins Appassionata won the Young Jumper - 7 Year Olds, besting a field of 44 horses. Over the 12-Fence Round One, 15 horses went clear and qualified for the Jump-Off. Welles was the fastest of seven double-clear performances, clocking in at 31.207 seconds over the tiebreaker course. Debbie Stephens placed second with Melinga owned by ADBF Inc., tripping the timers at 31.863. Kent Farrington aboard Riane for owner Kristen Bates was third with a time of 32.319.

“The jumps are suited to the horses’ age and go along with the horses’ mileage and experience. They’re not huge fences,” explained Welles. “It’s a nice division for the horses to graduate to and not have to compete in the Meter-30/Meter-35 divisions with the masses. It’s nice for the horses and for the people in this country to start to follow the breeding and be more aware of the breeding on these young horses. To see all the seven-year-olds together makes it more interesting.”

Welles and his Triton Ventures farm own today’s winner – a German-bred by Concerto that Welles imported as a five-year-old. Roberto Coin, a jeweler, sponsors Appassionata, hence the horse’s name.

In the Jump-off, Welles said he shaved time by leaving out a stride from fence 2 to 3. “You could do either a very direct seven to the 3, or a little slower eight strides, and I did seven. I left out a stride there that I didn’t see most people do. He’s a quick horse. He’s got a quick stride. I was just as direct and fluid as I could be. I tried to be direct to the last double because it was a long way from the skinny jump down to the last double combination, so I just let him gallop along there.”

Welles also won this class last year aboard Octavius, a horse that he now competes in the 1.40 and 1.45 meter classes. He plans to move Roberto Coins Appassionata up as well and plans a future for him as a Grand Prix horse. Welles found the horse with agent Javier Salvadore and foresaw a good competitor. “He’s just so athletic and has such a good temperament. He’s very careful, and has a great technique with jumping. He’s really simple to ride. A great animal.”

In this morning’s $5,000 WEF Individual Young Rider CSI/Y in the Internationale Arena, Abigail Carpenter 18, of Greenwich, CT, riding her own Rosanne Van De Withoeve took the win.

In the DeNemethy Arena, Daniel Bluman riding Turko owned by Steven Bluman won the FEI Children’s World Jumping Competition 2 Overall. Clementine Goutal riding Amethyst placed second and aboard Lightfeet placed third. Both horses are owned by Cloverleaf Farm.

For complete results, visit


Show days for the 2004 Winter Equestrian Festival are Wednesday through Sunday. Gates open at 8:00 am. Ticket Prices: Wednesdays are free to everyone; Children 12 and under are admitted free every day; Young Adults 13 to 18 and Seniors are $5 on Thursday through Sunday; Adults are $5 on Thursday and Friday, $10 on Saturday, and $15 on Sunday. The Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club is located on Pierson Road off South Shore Boulevard. For additional information, visit or call 561-793-5867.


February 25 - 29 PDP Capital Wellington Masters CSI***

March 3 - 7 CN Wellington Open CSI-W

March 10 - 14 CSIO United States Cosequin Finale CSIO***

March 18 - 21 Zada Enterprises WEF Dressage Classic CDI***/Y

(Qualifier for Olympic Selection Trials)

March 24 - 28 Tampa Bay Classic CSI-W (Bob Thomas Equestrian Center)

March 30 - April 3 Tournament of Champions CSI-W (Bob Thomas Equestrian Center)

April 3 Budweiser American Invitational (Raymond James Stadium)


February 29 $75,000 PDP Capital Masters Cup, CSI***

March 7 $75,000 CN Wellington Open presented by Estates of Wellington Green, CDI-W

March 12 $50,000 Samsung Nations’ Cup, presented by CN, CSIO****

March 14 $100,000 Cosequin U.S. Open Jumper Championship, CSIO****

March 28 $75,000 Grand Prix of Tampa, presented by Kilkenny/ICH, CSI-W

April 3 $200,000 Budweiser American Invitational, presented by The Tampa Tribune


Find out more, visit the links page or find answers on the message board.