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High Prairie Farms Hosts Riders from Seven States at USET Qualifier Dressage Shows

Parker, CO, June 6, 2003--Riders from seven states made their way to Parker, Colorado for Dressage at High Prairie I and II which included the only USET Qualifier in the region. “This is the first year we have had a show in May and overall I’m really pleased,” said show manager Glenda McElroy. “As support for the show continues to grow, I would like to add a second USET Qualifier.”

Both the Prix St. Georges and the Intermediaire USET Qualifiers were won by Sue Halasz of Parker, Colorado riding Inca. The USET Qualifying classes are held only at select shows throughout the country. Top finishers are invited to compete at the USET Festival of Champions in Gladstone, New Jersey. Inca, a 13-year-old Dutch gelding owned by Barbara McElnea, also claimed the FEI High Point for Show II.

FEI Junior/Amateur High Point Champion Show II Katie Westphal with Tami George, representative of Markel
Insurance, sponsors of the High Point Awards at both shows.
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Young Rider Katie Westphal of Augusta, Kansas drove more than eight hours to show at High Prairie, but her effort was more than rewarded. The 20 year old, who trains with Bonnie Griest, won both the FEI Young Rider Team Test and the FEI Young Rider Individual Test, earning the FEI Junior/Young Rider High Point at Show II and the Reserve High Point at Show I. “We have been coming to High Prairie for five or six years,” said Westphal. “We just love it. Everyone is so friendly.”

Westphal’s partner in claiming all of the ribbons was her 14-year-old Swedish Gelding Epigram. “He’s a real puppy dog-- a licker and a lover,” said Westphal of her horse. The pair is now qualified for the North American Young Riders Championships to be held in August in Canada. Westphal, who is apprenticing to be a jeweler, will represent Region Four.

Amateur rider Vance Diggins was the big winner of the High Point Awards sponsored by Markel Insurance. Diggins, owner of Paragon Equestrian Center, claimed three of four High Point Championships and Reserve Championships for Upper Level Amateur and Junior riders.

Exhibitors were treated to judging by some of the most respected names in the sport—FEI ‘I’ judges Lilo Fore, from California, and Natalie Lamping, of Illinois. ‘S’ judge Jane Weatherwax from California rounded out the judging panel.

Among the entertainment at the show was a freestyle competition held during the competitors’ party.

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