By: Lindsay Y. McCall
Avon, Connecticut – August 9, 2017 – 2016 USA Paralympian and 2014 World Equestrian
Games athlete Annie Peavy (Avon, Connecticut) and Paralympic teammate Margaret “Gigi” McIntosh (Reading, Pennsylvania) headed to Europe this summer to compete in two international Para-Dressage competitions. Peavy rode at the Hartpury Festival of Dressage CPEDI3* July 5-9, 2017, with her Paralympic mount Lancelot Warrior and her new partner Royal Dark Chocolate. Peavy and her horses had an outstanding first show in Hartpury giving them a valuable education of what to expect at Bishop Burton CPEDI3* July 25-29. McIntosh joined the trio at Bishop Burton with her new, 13 year old Danish Warmblood mare, Heros. Both equestrians had top finishes. Peavy brought home the Grade IV Championship earning a 1st in the Team Test on Lancelot Warrior with a 68.325% and 2nd with Royal Dark Chocolate earning a 68.275%. Peavy came back the second day for the Grade IV Individual Test earning a 70.049% for 1st place with Royal Dark Chocolate and garnering 2nd with Lancelot Warrior with a 68.415%. Peavy and Royal Dark Chocolate dominated the Grade IV Freestyle earning a 72.3% for the blue. McIntosh took home 5th place in the Grade I Team Test with a 63.964%, a 3rd place in the Grade I Individual with a 64.536%, and a 2nd place in the Freestyle with 68%. The FEI Ground Jury at the Bishop Burton CPEDI3* held at Bishop Burton College in Bishop Burton, East Riding of Yorkshire, England, included Sue Petty GBR3*, Jane McGarrell Groves GBR 3*, Bo Ahans SWE 4*, David Schmutz USA 4*, and Wendy Barker AUS 4*. Peavy and McIntosh will join USA Para-Dressage athletes from around the country in September at the USEF Para Equestrian Dressage National Championship Sponsored by Deloitte, September 14-17, held at Tryon International Equestrian Center in Tryon, North Carolina, site of the 2018 World Equestrian Games competition.
With so many medaling athletes based in Europe traveling overseas to compete can be very beneficial for a United States rider. Not only does the rider compete alongside their international counterparts, but they are seen by more international judges in international venues. These along with other elements can prepare our horses and riders for future competition at world events. Peavy came out of Hartpury learning more about her new horse Royal Dark Chocolate and strengthening her relationship with both horses. Peavy commented, “Bishop Burton’s CPEDI3* was a great finish for me. It was the first time I won a competition in England. Both Lance and Cocoa gave me their best. Cocoa is still a fairly new partnership and with each competition our connection and my love of riding her grows. She has such a kind heart and is always willing in the arena. It felt great to represent America and I am happy to finish in a top position. I could not have done this without my generous parents, Ed Peavy and Rebecca Reno. I’m so thankful to have my trainer, Heather Blitz, bringing me to the top and my super groom Alex Philpin for caring to Lance and Cocoa.”
For Peavy’s teammate Margaret McIntosh Bishop Burton was the first time she would show her new horse Heros in international Para-Dressage competition. After hearing a resounding endorsement of horse-hunting talent of Michel Assouline’s wife and classical dressage trainer Mette (she found both British Grade I team horses), McIntosh asked Mette to help her find a Grade I horse. McIntosh and her USA trainer Missy Ransehousen met Mette in Denmark in May where they found Heros. McIntosh trained with Mette at her farm in Colne Engaine, Essex, U.K. for the month of July before heading to the CPEDI3* at Bishop Burton. McIntosh explained, “By the time of Bishop, I had Heros for less than one month, I had no idea what to expect at our first show. I managed to make every common mistake in our first outing, going off course, pausing to poop, and whinnying. Our subsequent tests showed steady improvements culminating in a lovely freestyle for second place behind London Paralympic medal winner, Laurentia Tan. Despite my mistakes, our new USA Team coach, Michel Assouline, liked what he saw in the first test, stating, ‘The pieces are all there.’ He and Missy (Ransehousen) were both delighted with our freestyle performance and we are all looking forward to the CPEDI3* in Tryon in September.”
McIntosh added, “I want to thank Missy and Jessica Ransehousen, Mette and MichelAssouline, Charlotte McIntosh, Ellen Beardsley, Alex Philpin and Becky Reno for all their great help in making this wonderful trip happen.”
Both riders and their horses will head to Tryon, North Carolina, in September for the USEF Para Equestrian Dressage National Championship Sponsored by Deloitte, September 14-17, held at Tryon International Equestrian Center, site of the 2018 World Equestrian Games competition.