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Debbie McDonald and Brentina win the Grand Prix.
Photo by Charles Mann
Brentina Wins Grand Prix, Takes Lead in WEG Trials
By Stacey Nedrow-Wigmore

June 8, 2002, Gladstone, NJ--Despite Brentina's breaking out into hives just two hours before her ride time, Debbie McDonald and the Hanoverian mare took the gold medal in the second Grand Prix of the selection trials for the World Equestrian Games (WEG) dressage team. "I was very emotional at the end of the test," said McDonald after her second win during the trials with a 71.28 percent. She went into the test riding a little conservatively, looking for a strong, clean performance. McDonald said that even though the mare wasn't feeling 100 percent, "she really came through for me." Her scores moved her into first place over Sue Blinks and Flim Flam in the overall standings, with Sunday's freestyle score to count for the final 15 percent.

Christine Traurig and Etienne took second with 69.96 percent. "I was really happy with him," she said. "I couldn't have asked for more." Traurig didn't expect to be in contention for a team spot since they came into the trials toward the bottom of the qualifying list. "I just wanted to ride a consistent test and do a good job," she said. The pair kept their fourth place standings overall.

Traurig's 2000 Olympic teammate Guenter Seidel and Nikolaus 7 displayed the bronze medal during the awards ceremony with 67.76 percent. "I had a disappointing Grand Prix test today," he said. "Nikolaus came into it today very good and very relaxed. He just needed a little push to get going, and I didn't do it. He just slept through the whole test. I'm not used to him being so relaxed." Their scores dropped the pair from second to third place overall.

Tom Noone and Fresco withdrew after a fall in the schooling area, and Shelly Francis and Gala withdrew as well.


Jury: (E) Trond Asmyr, (H) Hilda Gurney, (C) Linda Zang, (M) Anne Gribbons, (B) Volker Moritz

Place/Rider/Horse/Total/Percent/3-Day Total/3-Day Placing
1. Debbie McDonald/Brentina/1782/71.82/60.086/1
2. Christine Traurig/Etienne/1724/68.96/58.230/4
3. Guenter Seidel/Nikolaus 7/1694/67.76/59.530/3
4. Sue Blinks/Flim Flam/1680/67.20/59.626/2
5. Steffen Peters/Grandeur/1664/66.56/56.856/5
6. Guenter Seidel/Foltaire/1617/64.68/55.674/7
7. Cherri Reiber/G Tudor/1608/64.32/53.640/9
8. George Williams/Rocher/1593/63.72/57.570/8
9. Betsy Steiner/Rainier/1586/63.44/56.466/6
10. Susan Dutta/Gumshoes-DC/1565/62.60/52.992/10
11. Lynda Cameron/Orion/1518/60.72/50.882/11
12. Shelly Francis/Gala/Withdrawn
13. Tom Noone/Fresco/Withdrawn


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