Laura Graves and Verdades Score 80% in FEI Grand Prix CDI 5* at AGDF
Laura Graves and Verdades climbed to the top of the leaderboard in Thursday’s FEI Grand Prix CDI 5*, presented by Diamante Farms, during the fifth week of competition at the 2017 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, FL.
2016 Olympic Bronze Medalists Laura Graves and Verdades, a 2002 Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Graves, ended their day with a winning score of 80.080%. “This is pretty monumental for us,” said Graves. “We’ve been working at 80% in every test for a while now, probably since our first year at Grand Prix. Knowing what was possible with this horse and to be rewarded today while still feeling like I may have some improvements left, it’s encouraging to have the judging panel be generous and my horse be so generous, and for us to have such a great show to come out and compete at.”
The score was Graves’ first one above 80% in a FEI CDI 5* Grand Prix, putting her alongside U.S. Olympic teammate Steffen Peters as a member of the “80% Club,” which counts only 14 riders in the world as members.
Placing second to Graves in in the FEI Grand Prix CDI 5* was fellow 2016 Olympic Bronze Medalist Steffen Peters and Rosamunde, a 2007 Rhinelander mare owned by Four Winds Farm. They scored 73.820%. “I had a very electric horse under me today, so the first halt was certainly a reflection of that,” said Peters. “Overall I have to say that there were lots of things that felt absolutely wonderful. Sometimes she can be a bit unsteady in the bridle, and she was just perfect in the connection today.” He continued, “It’s taking time with ‘Rosie’. She is ten and is still a firecracker; nothing different than with Legolas when he was ten. Horses at that age, they need to have the spark to be brilliant later. She is super honest and is a bit of an overachiever. It’s now about the exposure for her.”
Third place was awarded to Tinne Vilhelmson Silfven and Paridon Magi, a 2003 Swedish Warmblood gelding (Don Primero x Napoli x Napoleon 625) owned by Lövsta Stuteri, with a score of 73.700%. Silfven commented on her ride, “I was very happy with Magi today. He ran a little out of gas. Maybe I warmed him up a little too long, but overall he’s so ambitious and tries to do his best every time.” “I must also say, when Laura got her 80%, I got goose bumps,” Silfven added. “It’s a cool thing to have. I was really happy [for her]. It was my best memory from today.”