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Arabian Sport Horse Nationals Features Driving and Dressage Exhibitions

This September, carriage driving enthusiasts and dressage riders who compete in all-breed competitions will give four demonstrations at Sport Horse Nationals in Lexington, Virginia-an obstacle driving and driving dressage demonstration and two dressage musical freestyle exhibitions.

According to the chair of the Eventing & Combined Driving Committee, Wanda Funk, the pleasure driving session will begin with a short working class of five turnouts, demonstrating proper equipment, attire, gaits, turnout, reinsmanship and other specifications. Then each exhibitor will complete a short timed obstacle (cones) course. Committee member Kristin Urban from Minnesota will announce times and explain the rules and the various types of obstacles.

The following obstacle driving demonstrators include Wayne Gavitt (the organizer of this part of the demonstration), Dr. Larry Bason, from Mill Hall, each of whom will be driving one of Gavitts' three carriage horses, Half-Arabians Orvil Redenbacher (Lewisfield Nizani x Popcorn) and Mohamed Knockout (Mohamed Aly x Copacabana), or Arabian FG Fire Frost (Fire Free x S-R Serlona). Tina Cornell will drive Pamela Koch's Half-Arabian Mazan Po Stardoo (Zanadoo x Masters Poco Honey). Other prospective participants are: Diane Dincher, Janet Reed, Samea Baker, Roy Mundt and Wanda Funk.

Christine Smith-Byerly and her Arabian mare Gisela MBI+ (Aikon x Gildia) will demonstrate one part of combined driving, driving dressage, and possibly a mini-marathon.

The driving demonstrations, which the Eventing & Driving Committee developed to encourage the addition of these classes to the show by 2005, will take place in Anderson Coliseum on Wednesday September 17 after the sport horse in-hand classes (early afternoon) and on Thursday after the 5:00 p.m. hunter schooling rounds.

The Prix St. Georges pas de deux is a magnificently choreographed dressage ride to Henry Mancini music. Performing the pas de deux are two of the top FEI Arabians in the country: Fleet Halaaniz (Ibn Mirzaz x Fleeta Twin-aana), 1996 Fourth Level and Prix St. Georges National Champion owned and ridden by Lisa Payne, and PF Succeeding On (Ivanhoe x Aval), 1998 Fourth Level Reserve National Champion and Top Ten Prix St. Georges, owned by Penny Turner and ridden by Johnny Robb. When Payne and Robb perform the pas de deux in competition, they are always the high scorers. What makes this ride a special delight to watch is the contrast of the two horses, one black and one white, but nearly identical in size and movement. The pas de deux will take place on September 20, Saturday night during the 7:00 p.m. session in Anderson Coliseum.

The next day, September 21, Lauren Ball-Tisdale will perform an Intermediate I freestyle exhibition on FM Kaswyn+/, the 2002 National Champion Fourth Level Horse. FM Kaswyn+/ (PS Kasenova x Eowyn) and Ball-Tisdale have also performed a demonstration ride at the 2002 United States Dressage Federation Musical Freestyle National Symposium. The exhibition will be held on Sunday afternoon after the Hunter Classic and right before the Sport Horse Supreme Champion class.

AHA is a 40,000 member equine association that registers and maintains a database of more then one million Arabian, Half-Arabian and Anglo-Arabian horses. It administers more than $4 million in annual prize money, produces national events, maintains official event records, recognizes more than 400 Arabian horse shows and distance rides and provides activities and programs that promote breeding and ownership. For information about Arabian, Half-Arabian and Anglo-Arabian horses, call 303-696-4500, e-mail or visit





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