Week seven of the 2021 Global Dressage Festival concluded on Sunday 28 February 2021 with a win for USA’s Benjamin Ebeling on Illuster van de Kampert in the Grand Prix Special 3*.
Ebeling and Illuster Van De Kampert, Amy Roberts Ebeling and Nuvolari Holdings, LLC’s 2008 Belgian Warmblood gelding by Spielberg, topped the competitive class with a score of 75.170%, almost five full points ahead of the second place score.
“It’s really a testament to my coaches and the team behind me,” expressed Ebeling. “For me, it’s really important to give thanks to them. They help me so much day to day, and I wouldn’t be here without them.”
The high score was also a personal best for Ebeling and the gelding, their second of the week after placing first in Friday’s Grand Prix 3* with a 73.326%.
“Today was the most comfortable that Illuster has felt in that arena,” said Ebeling. “Of course, it’s a big atmosphere for any horse, but he’s naturally a hot horse. The arena can be a bit of a challenge for him. Every time we go in there he’s settling down and for me mentally, that’s a big win. Today his strength was definitely in the canter work. The first trot half-pass I was very happy with, and that last centerline is always so fun to ride too.”
The pair made their senior international Grand Prix debut at GDF this season after competing in the Under 25 division and have notched several top placings since, with the day’s Special marking their third big tour win.
Proving that hard work pays off, the team also has several eyes on them as they are coached by Ebeling’s father, Olympian Jan Ebeling, Japanese dressage team coach Christoph Koschel, and also receive help from retired five-star judge Gary Rockwell and former USA dressage team coach Robert Dover.
Ebeling explained, “Usually I’m talking to Robert Dover the night before a test, and one thing that he’s always telling me is maintaining a good connection with power and collection. It’s something that we talk about often, and I really feel like I brought that into the arena today.”
Susan Dutta on the Rise
Second place in the Grand Prix Special 3* was awarded to Susan Dutta (USA) on Don Design DC, Susan and Tim Dutta’s 2010 Hanoverian gelding by Der Designer with 70.893%. Dutta also placed second in the Grand Prix for special earlier in the week on a personal best score of 71.304%.
Anna Buffini (USA) on FRH Davinia la Douce, her own 2007 Hanoverian mare by Don Frederico, took third place honors with 70.702%.
Wandres Wins Again
In the Intermediaire II 3*, Germany’s Frederic Wandres took top honors abord Terry Lan’s 2011 Oldenburg gelding by Blue Hors Hotline, Hot Hit 3, with a 74.588%. Second went to Mathilde Blais Tetreault (CAN) and Fedor, Laurence Blais Tetreault’s 2010 KWPN gelding by Johnson TN, with 70.059%. Pia Fortmuller rounded out the top three with Frieda, Lars Busch and Pia Fortmuller’s 2011 Hanoverian mare by Furstenball OLD, with 69.853%.
In the Intermediaire I Freestyle 3* Canada’s Alexandra Reid earned first place with Flynn, Elaine Cordia-van Reesema’s 2010 Danish Warmblood gelding by Wynton, with 73.295%. Dong Seon Kim (KOR) took home second place on his own Lord Nunes, a 2012 Rhinelander stallion by Lord Loxley I, with 72.590%. Third place went to Michael Klimke (GER) on Domino 957, Uwe Kappel’s 2012 Westphalian mare by Den Haag 12, with 70.290%.
-- GDF press release, edited by Eurodressage.
Photos © Sue Stickle
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