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NBatchelder.PersonalWebLicenseXL.8USF4604©SusanJStickle.com.-(ZF-10707-50009-2-002)
 As posted on Facebook 12 November 2018:

“Following an amazing week at the US Dressage Finals in Kentucky, the four horses, two corgis, and two humans that represented Team River House are safely back home in Florida! We enjoyed tremendous success – especially with the ‘Fidertanz Twins’, who took home 5 tricolors between them! We even got some 9s at Nationals!!!

On Saturday evening, Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon bred by Jill Peterson) glided his way to the Open Intermediare Freestyle Championship title with an incredible 77.783%! It was extra special because Andrea Whitcomb, my cousin and Faro’s co-owner, was there to witness his elegance in person. Fifi MLW (Fidertanz/Wolkentanz bred by Mary Lou Pitz Winn) danced to my fun, homemade freestyle to finish right on her brother’s heals with an impressive 76.783% to take the Reserve Champion honors. It was fabulous to ride these two super talented horses in the dynamic environment of the Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park.

Fifi MLW came back to earn her own Championship title on the following brisk Sunday morning. We won the Open Prix St. Georges Championship with a 73.137%! With the win, Fifi MLW earned the Miki Christophersen Perpetual Trophy, which Faro SQF earned last year. This year, Faro SQF, being the gentleman that he is, graciously accepted the Reserve Championship honors with a 71.765%. With her score, Fifi MLW also earned the Lloyd Landkamer Perpetual Trophy for the second year in a row. This award is for the FEI Highest Scoring Mare at the Finals. It is an honor for Fifi to win this award and a great opportunity for us to be able to remember Lloyd who was always such a big presence at all of our National Championships and CDIs.

These two stars also performed well in their first championship class of their competition, the Open Intermediare Championship, on Friday. Faro SQF was Reserve Champion with a 71.373% and Fifi MLW took third place honors with a 70.196%. I am so grateful to have these two very special horses in my life.

My little mare, Bahai (Baroncelli/Rotspon bred by Otto Fuchs), was a bit unsettled by the loud noises in the Alltech Arena, but still tried her heart out in the Open Grand Prix Championship to earn third place! She was very tired by the time our late night ride in the Open Grand Prix Freestyle Championship rolled around, but she managed to stay in the ribbons.

Clever 6 yo River House home-bred, Belatrix RH (Bretone/Weltmeyer), thought Regionals was a big venue, but going to Nationals was even more of an eye opener! She was a very good girl though, winning her Third Level warm-up class and taking 4th place in her Open Fourth Level Championship. She was the youngest in her class and did fabulous work in her test, unfortunately we just had a few moments of lost attention that hurt our scores. But, she’s amazing and has a very bright future!

All of these horses are wonderful and it’s a privilege to be able to spend my time training them. As always, these successes are made possible through the help of many people, here are a few… My parents, Jeanie and Verne. Andrea for her support with Faro and all of her help this week. Anne for coming to cheer, help, and video this week. Sally Seaver for her generous support. All of my clients who trust me to coach them and train their horses. The great people that help out in the barn – including working student, Celina, and Kenn. Custom Saddlery (Rebecca, Faye, and Sharon) for making the high-quality saddles I ride in. Super farrier Colin. Deborah, who routinely clips my horses and makes them look super sleek and Alyssa from Blue Ribbon Braiding for giving Bahai a gorgeous emergency body clip at the horse park. A big thank you too, to Sandy and Laura from the American Hanoverian Society for helping us get the stalls set up and everything unloaded at the horse park. All of the vets, body workers, friends, and family. And, of course, all of the show organizers, show sponsors, volunteers, and the friendly, talented competitors who help make the whole Nationals experience worth the trip every year!”

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Regionals2018g

 As posted on Facebook 15 October 2018:

“Team River House got back to the farm very early this morning after an incredible GAIG/USDF Region 3 Championships at the Georgia International Horse Park. The weather was gorgeous, the classes were huge, the competition was fierce, and I couldn’t be prouder of all of my horses! We took home 5 Championships and 4 Reserve Championships!!

Andrea Whitcomb‘s Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon, bred by Jill Peterson), kicked off the success by taking the large Open Prix St. Georges Championship with a 71.765%. Faro’s little sister, Fifi MLW (Fidertanz/Wolkentanz, bred by Mary Lou Pitz Winn) was a very close Reserve Open PSG Champion to her big brother with a 71.691%.

On Saturday, Faro’s big sister, Bahai (Baroncelli/Rotspon) – who River House imported as a foal at her mother’s side – kept the good things rolling putting in a solid Grand Prix Freestyle as the very first test of the day – her early morning score held up for a Reserve Championship title. Fifi MLW totally rocked her Intermediare Freestyle to decisively take the Championship with a 76.125%! Faro SQF took the Reserve title in the big, competitive class with a 73.688%. River House home-bred, Belatrix RH (Bretone/Weltmeyer) didn’t want to be outdone, so she put in a lovely, clean test to take the Open Fourth Level Championship with a 72.000%, not bad for a very clever 6 year old!

The successes kept coming on Sunday with my little Bahai pulling out a win in the Open Grand Prix Championship. Fifi MLW threw down the gauntlet in the Open Intermediare Championship – scoring an impressive 74.485%. When we were tacking up Faro SQF, we told him he had to get a 75+ if he wanted to beat his little sister yet again. So, he went out and did just that! Taking the Championship on a 75.294% and pushing Fifi MLW to Reserve. They have quite a sibling rivalry going on!

I am so lucky to have these amazing horses in my life and I still can’t believe we did this well. There are many, many people that help make this possible, but here are just a few… My parents, Jeanie and Verne. Faro the Fabulous’s owner, Andrea the Awesome. All of my clients who trust me to help them with their riding and training their horses . My fab working student, Celina. Kenn and Patty who help take care of the barn. Custom Saddlery (Rebecca, Faye, and Sharon) for making the wonderful saddles I ride in – Fifi MLW is now dancing in her gorgeous, brand new saddle! Super farrier, Colin Morrow. Deborah Bonenclark, who clipped Fifi and Bahai at the last minute to look super sleek. All the vets, body workers, friends, family, show organizers, and the kind, friendly competitors and spectators who just made the whole experience fun!”

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As posted on Facebook 08 September 2018:

“I have some Festival of Champions photographs taken by the amazing Sue Stickle to share!

Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon/World Cup I gelding bred by Jill Peterson) and Fifi MLW (Fidertanz/Wolkentanz I/Rohdiamant bred by Mary Lou Pitz Winn) were 4th and 6th respectively, in the Intermediare National Championships. I am so thankful to have these two fabulous horses to ride. Thank you so much to Faro’s owner and my cousin Andrea Whitcomb – it is such a pleasure to have Faro in my life!

It takes a whole team to do this. I am eternally grateful to my parents, Jeanie and Verne, for all of their support in my endeavors in this crazy horse sport we share.

I also want to express my gratitude to Sally Seaver for her generous patronage.

A big thank you to all the people that work to keep the horses happy and healthy: especially Colin Morrow, Dr. Tennant, Dr. Varney, and Dr. Mountan. Thank you to everyone who helps keep the farm running. Thanks to all of my clients who trust me to develop their horses and their riding goals. Thanks to my student Kasey, who kept my Grand Prix horse, Bahai, going while I was at Lamplight.

A huge thank you to Custom Saddlery (Rebecca Forrest Blikslager, Faye Flynn-Saddle Fitter, and Sharon Stanford Cooper) for making all of the saddles I ride in. I have a brand new sponsored saddle – it’s beautiful, I love it, and Fifi loves it!

It was wonderful to be back at Festival of Champions – the gorgeous venue at Lamplight, the show managers, USEF staffers, and all the amazing competitors with their awesome horses combined to create a super competition with great Championship atmosphere. With Luck, we’ll be back there again soon!”

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27 May 2018 Facebook post:

“Everyone for Team River House had a great weekend of firsts at the beautiful Grand Oaks Dressage Show. The wind and rain of a subtropical storm were threatened, but the weather held and ended up being fabulous for riding! Clark donned the tailcoat for the first time and looked dashing as he piloted Tony the Magnificent (Bretone) through two solid Prix St. Georges tests and earned his USDF Silver Medal! Though Rebecca and Micanopy RH are just beginning their partnership together, this gorgeous pair had a very promising start in their first PSG – earning 65+% and the blue ribbon! Kasey and her talented HS Diamond Dolly were brilliant in their first Intermediare I endeavor – earning a 68.6%! They also survived the crackling speakers to earn their first I-1 Freestyle score for Regionals and a blue ribbon. Mitch did a fabulous job navigating through a very respectable initial foray at First Level 3 on an overly exuberant Chewy; Mr. Chew looked a bit like he wanted back in the speed round at the jumper show – two thumbs up for impulsion! I also was lucky enough to ride this weekend on Fran‘s 7 yo star, Grapjas, in his first Prix St. Georges tests. He was fantastic – winning both his Test of Choice classes with 69.6% and 69.4%. He is a joy to ride and has a very bright future! Congrats to all!

 As posted on Facebook on 05 August 2018:

“Team River House survived the heat and had a great show at the always pleasant Canterbury Showplace this weekend! (Be sure to check out the cutest member of the team in the short video =D).

Belatrix RH, a 6 y.o. River House home-bred (Bretone/SPS Weltfee II [Weltmeyer]), was a total star in just her second USDF competition. She was High Point Open Third Level horse with her 70+% winning 3-3 ride. She also won her Fourth Level debut in the demanding 4-3 test with another 70+%. Bela is always a blast to ride – such a good girl!

Kasey and her super unicorn, Dolly, won both their Amateur Intermediare I (with 66+%) and their Intermediare Freestyle (with a 68+%) classes – taking home High Point FEI Amateur honors. Cleaning up yet again in just their second outing at the Intermediare level!

I haven’t had Bahai in the ring since last year’s US Dressage Finals, so we were quite rusty. But, we still managed to pull out a win in the Grand Prix with a 66+% and earn Open FEI Reserve High Point honors. By the Grand Prix Freestyle today, we were starting to get our groove back a bit – she took home the blue with 71+%.

As always, a big THANK YOU to Custom Saddlery for making the fabulous saddles I ride in. Fifi MLW will be sporting the latest gorgeous saddle to head our way when she, Faro SQF, and I head to Festival of Champions in a couple weeks.”

As posted on Facebook 16 September 2018:
“We took a very quick trip over to Grand Oaks to get a few last minute qualifying scores. The always impressive Fifi MLW (Fidertanz/Wolkentanz) tried her new freestyle for a second time. We have worked some kinks out since Festival of Champions and she scored a 79+%!

Home-bred, 6 yo wonder mare, Belatrix RH (Bretone/Weltmeyer) put in a lovely, clean 4-3 test to get her all qualified at fourth level for Regionals. Good girls!”

As posted on Facebook 06 November 2018:
“We’re on the road to Kentucky!!! But, before we get started on US Dressage Finals, a quick update about Team River House’s success at the recent Canterbury Holiday Kick Off Show.Kasey and Dolly rocked their Intermediare II debut, taking home two blue ribbons and High Score FEI Adult Amateur. Way to go Kasey and the Unicorn – you two have a bright future in the Grand Prix!

Mitch and Sir Chewy made their Second Level debut and earned their third score towards a USDF Bronze Medal. They did a great job tackling a new level and concurring those simple changes!

Working student Celina Collins, did a super job piloting Wilber through his first two tests back in the ring after a long hiatus. In just her second dressage show ever, Celina earned her first two scores for her USDF Bronze Medal. Nice job!”

 

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CDIs2018e

This post appeared on Facebook 01 April 2018:

“Faro SQF, Fifi MLW, and I just completed a successful CDI double header at Global 10 & 12 in Wellington. In large classes, among talented competition, we earned ribbons in every test and finished in the top 3 five times! They both made their I-1 debuts in the international ring this winter and held their own. I am super proud of both of them.

Highlights for Faro SQF include a 3rd place in the I-1 CDI 3* at week 10, a 3rd place in the PSG CDI 1* at week 12, and a 2nd place in the I-1 CDI 1* at week 12 with a 70+% and just a couple tenths off the lead! He also did his first I-1 freestyles this winter, earning a pair of 71+%s and top five placings. I am eternally grateful to Andrea for enabling me to ride this fantastic horse and I am very excited for his future!

Highlights for Fifi MLW include a 2nd place in the PSG CDI 3* and a 3rd place in the I-1 CDI 3* at week 12. We have had some set backs this winter, but we’re slowly getting our mojo back and the sky is the limit with Queen Fifi, so we’ll see where we go!

We’ll be at the farm now for a few months playing more with the Grand Prix work and then, with a bit of luck, we’ll be headed up to Festival of Champions!

Thank you so much to my mom for helping me out tirelessly at the show. Thank you to my dad, Verne, for keeping the farm going so we can come down and try to swim in the big pond. Thank you to Kenn, Celina, Gilberto, and Dean for all you do for the horses at the farm. Thank you to Sally for all of your support in my High Performance goals. Thank you to all of my clients who trust me with their special horses and let me teach them. Thank you to all of the incredible professionals that keep my horses sound and healthy: including Colin, Dr. Varney, and Dr. Tennant. Thank you to the wonderful organizers, competitors and sponsors at AGDF, who make these events spectacular. And a thank you so much to Custom Saddlery (Rebecca, Sharon, and Faye) and Choice of Champions International (Allyn Maix) for sponsoring me with fabulous Custom saddles and supplements that help us perform at the top of our game!”

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Gorgeous photos by Sue Stickle from the Markel Young and Developing Horse National Championships, the GAIG/USDF Region 3 Championships, and US Dressage Finals!

Click  on the thumbnail and then click again on the small photo that loads to see them full size!

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I also recently learned that Faro SQF and Fifi MLW swept the Open High Score Hanoverian Awards at US Dressage Finals! Faro SQF was High Score Hanoverian for the FEI Levels with his winning ride in the Open Prix St. Georges Championship and Fifi MLW was High Score Hanoverian for the National Levels with her Open Fourth Level Reserve Champion ride. Good ponies!

As posted on Facebook 14 November 2017:

“We are home from a fabulous 2017 US Dressage Finals and back to work today! It’s a beautifully run show in an absolutely gorgeous setting.

We wrapped up the national competition with a particularly great finish in the Open Prix St. Georges Championship in which I rode three horses. Faro SQF (Owned by Andrea Whitcomb and myself and bred in the USA by Jill Peterson [9yo Fidertanz/Rotspon/World Cup]) took home the Championship title, Fifi MLW (Also bred in the USA by Mary Lou Pitz Winn [8yo Fidertanz/Wolkentanz/Rohdiamant]) took home Reserve Champion honors, and River House Hanoverians homebred, Micanopy RH (8yo Maronjo/Matcho X/Argentan) finished in 8th among a very talented field.

Faro SQF and Fifi MLW took home two of the six perpetual trophies from US Dressage Finals. Faro SQF earned the Miki Christophersen Perpetual Trophy for being the Prix St. Georges Open Champion. Fifi MLW earned the Lloyd Landkamer Perpetual Trophy for being the Highest Scoring FEI Mare. These two horses are such talents – it’s a privilege to ride them and an honor to have our names on these awards.

Fifi MLW also took home the Reserve Champion title in the Open Fourth Level Championship, just missing out on Champion by a few tenths of a point.

My little Bahai (13yo by Baroncelli out of SPS Rose (Rotspon/World Cup) who was imported by River House Hanoverians/Verne Batchelder and is also the dam of Faro SQF) had far from her best test in the Open Grand Prix Championship, but still managed to pull out a fourth place finish. She and I were much more on the same page in the Open Grand Prix Freestyle Championship and earned another close fourth place finish.

Micanopy RH had a busy weekend with three Finals classes. In addition to her 8th place Open PSG Championship finish, she also finished in 11th place out of 28 horses in the Open Intermediare I Championship and finished 5th in the Open Intermediare I Freestyle Championship. She really held her own among stiff competition.

I am so thankful to have such nice horses to ride. To everyone who helps me make this crazy dressage dream a reality – THANK YOU! Especially my parents, Jeanie and Verne, I couldn’t do this without you.”

 

As posted on Facebook 09 October 2017:

“We had a great show at the GAIG Region 3 Championships! It started out very wet and ended up very hot, but the horses were fantastic!

Fifi MLW was a star – winning the Open Fourth Level Championship with a 75.056%! She added a whole new collection of fans to her fan club with her victory lap trot <3.

Bahai was also a winner – taking home the Open Grand Prix Freestyle Championship for the second time in three years! Good girl! Bahai also took 3rd in the Open Grand Prix Championship. She received two gorgeous trays of rainbow carrots and apples presented by Diamante Farms, which she thoroughly enjoyed!

Andrea‘s Faro SQF proved once again that he can best his little sister, Fifi MLW ;-) . They both did very well in the Open Prix St. Georges Championships, taking home fourth and fifth out of about 40 horses with a 72+% and a 71+%.

Micanopy RH was in that same large and competitive PSG Championship and she put in a great effort to finish 11th with a 68+%. Micanopy also danced her way to a 3rd place finish in the Intermediare Freestyle Championship with a 70.8% and a 7th place finish in the Open Intermediare I Championship.

I was very happy with all four horses and they all earned places at US Dressage Finals in Kentucky!!!

Kasey rode Dolly very well – finishing 3rd in the Amateur Fourth Level Championship and 6th in the Fourth Level Freestyle – they’re headed to Nationals in Kentucky too! WooHoo!

Thank you to everyone who helps make this possible for me. Especially my mom, who was my groom/coach/chauffeur…
And my dad, Verne, who took time out of his busy clinic and AHS judging schedule to watch the farm.”

As posted on Facebook 28 August 2017:

“We drove through the night and we’re back home safely from the Markel Young & Developing Horse Championships at Lamplight near Chicago.

Andrea’s and my handsome, talented Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon/World Cup) was a very good boy! He placed 5th in the Prix St. Georges and 4th in the Developing PSG to finish 5th overall in a very talented National Championship field. He has come so far in a short amount of time and his future looks very bright!

Powerhouse mare, Fifi MLW (Fidertanz/Wolkentanz/Rohdiamont), started the competition out strong with a 2nd place finish in the Prix St. Georges, but we had a very costly mistake in the Developing PSG, which landed her in 7th place overall in the National Championship. The quality of the work on our schooling days and in the warm-up was amazing and encouraging for her future.

Fran’s lovely 6 year old, Grapjas (Zizi Top/Kennedy), had great learning experiences in the busy championship atmosphere far from home. He was gorgeous and very grown up at the jog and awards ceremony and he nailed every single one of his flying changes.

It was a privilege to qualify and compete all three of these quality horses with bright careers ahead of them.

It takes a village to make these things happen, so big thanks to everyone… especially my parents, Verne Batchelder and Jeanie Hahn, for all of their support. Thanks to the corgis, Besser and The Poo, for being perfect, sweet, and sassy. Thanks to everyone who makes the show at Lamplight such a high caliber championship – from the title sponsor Markel Insurance to the entire show staff and USEF reps. Thanks to my clients – including generous owners Fran and Andrea. Thanks to Kathy and Debbie for sending me good luck wishes and support, and for the invaluable help no matter how infrequent. Kasey for exercising the frisky Bahai while I was away. And everyone who tries to keep the horses feeling their best – including Dean, Colin Morrow, Courtney Rouhier Varney, Eva Peterson, and Rebecca Forrest Blikslager /Sharon Stanford Cooper/Custom Saddlery. And also a big thank you to all the other competitors who were so friendly and encouraging – it’s an honor to be in such company.”

As posted on Facebook 24 August 2017:

“It was a long day, but a successful one! Fifi MLW and Andrea Whitcomb‘s Faro SQF were 2nd and 5th, respectively, in the Prix St Georges at the Developing Horse National Championships‼️ Very proud of them both More later…”

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As posted on Facebook 31 July 2017:

“Another great weekend showing at the Georgia International Horse Park! 8 year old, River House bred, Micanopy RH (Maronjo/Matcho X/Argentan) danced her way to a win in the Intermediare Freestyle with a 74.750% and the High Score Freestyle award! Andrea‘s and my talented boy, Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon/World Cup), took home yet another win in a Developing Horse Prix St. Georges qualifier with a 70+% and was Reserve High Score FEI of the show. He’s had a stellar start to his FEI level career! Fran‘s gorgeous Grapjas (Zizi Top/Kennedy/Highline) put in another pair of great efforts in the FEI 6 YO Tests, winning both his classes and earning an 8.2 on his phenomenal canter! I am proud of all three of these young talents with very bright futures <3.”

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As posted on Facebook June 11th, 2017:

“Fabulous show at the Georgia International Horse Park this weekend! Andrea Whitcomb‘s Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon) was a total star all weekend – winning his first ever Prix St. Georges with a 71.842% on Saturday and his Developing Prix St. Georges National Qualifier with a 72.868% on Sunday! He was FEI High Point and we earned an engraving on the Good Horseman’s Cup for High Score of the show! He earned many 8′s and even a 9!

Fran Cross‘s super gelding, Grapjas (Zizi Top/Kennedy), was fabulous in his FEI 6 Year Old Test National Qualifier – taking first place with a 77.4%! The judges thought he showed a lot of potential and rewarded his outstanding canter with an 8!

Thank you Fran and Andrea – it is a pleasure to ride such high quality horses!

Very proud of Kasey and Dolly for a great second show at PSG. They took two second places, scored 64+%, and earned some 8′s on the hard stuff – like canter pirouettes! Good job!

Thanks Verne/Dad for watching the farm and Mom for helping at the show!

Rebecca Forrest Blikslager, both Grapjas and Faro SQF go in the Custom Saddlery Wolfgang Solo 2 saddle you sent. They love it and I do too! Thank you Custom Saddlery, Sharon Stanford Cooper.”

As posted on Facebook on 25 June 2017:

“Grapjas and Faro SQF had another successful weekend in Georgia! It was a rainy, muddy weekend, but we earned more scores on our quest to qualify three horses for the Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse National Championships at Lamplight. Fran‘s Grapjas (Zizi Top/Kennedy) was a star – sloshing through the mud in the FEI 6 YO Test to earn 78% both days – including 8′s on Submission and General Impression. Andrea‘s and my Faro SQF (Fidertanz/Rotspon) put in another great effort in his nascent FEI career – braving the muck to win both his Prix St. Georges and Developing Prix St. Georges classes and take home the FEI High Score of the show, again! Very proud of these two talented horses and grateful to Fran and Andrea for the opportunity to develop them.”

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As posted on Facebook May 28th, 2017:

“River House had a very successful show at Grand Oaks this weekend! Bahai (Baroncelli/Rotspon/World Cup) was a star both days – winning the Grand Prix on Saturday with a 69.7% and winning the Grand Prix Special on Sunday with a 70.8%. 8 year old home-bred, Micanopy RH (Maronjo/Matcho/Argentan), was awesome – taking second place in the Intermediare 1 on Saturday with a 68.9% and first place in her first ever freestyle with a 72+%. Clark did a great job with Tony the Magnificent all weekend – they had a super first level test to win with a 67%! It was a long weekend and a bit toasty, but it’s all good because we had fun and won blue ribbons =D.”

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