Endel Ots and his newest equine partner, Sonnenberg’s Everdance kicked their program up a notch, with dual CDI’s wins during the Global Dressage Festival 8 Palm Beach Derby on 26 February - 1 March 2020.
The beautiful American bred mare (by Johnson x Zeoliet x Oldenburg), owned by Dan and Gina Ruediger of Sonnenberg Farm, scored high marks in the Prix St Georges CDI 1* and the Intermediate CDI 1*, earning them first place in both both tests.
A 9 for her Sequence Changes
“She was very nice and focused,” Ots comments, “In the Prix St Georges, she had a 9 for her sequence changes and many 8’s and 7’s throughout the test. I also got a 9 as rider from the judges,” he adds. The marks earned the team a blue ribbon with a score of 73.775%.
Ots also gushed a bit about their winning the I-1 test with Everdance scoring some impressive 9’s and 10’s throughout the test. They the class with a 76.117% and claimed the blue again and a enjoyed a second victory lap in the awards ceremony.
“It was a very nice outing, and helped to build her confidence in the ring,” Ots shared, “She’s very calm and acts like it’s old hat!”
Ots says that Everdance likes showing and finds it interesting. He describes her as having a good mind, especially in the show ring. “She stays very much with you,” he says, “She never wants to do anything wrong. She’s very motivated to do the right thing, and she doesn’t get nervous or jumpy about anything. It’s a very nice feeling in the ring.”
Training with Charlotte Bredahl
Ots explains that he has been working with dressage coach and trainer, Charlotte Bredahl to help bring Everdance up through the ranks. He says that Bredahl was very happy with both tests.
“She said I didn’t leave any points in the ring, and it’s some of the best riding she’s seen me do,” he smiles. “I think our relationship through the training, coaching and showing is getting much stronger. I very much trust her eyes and her opinion, and she also trusts what I feel when I’m sitting on the horse.” Ots continues, “It’s a very positive thing and it gives me a lot of confidence to be able to work on what I need to in the warm up, while having some very experienced eyes on the ground to tell me what it looks like.”
Working Towards National Championships
Ots’ plan is to work Everdance up to the I-1 Championships with the next step in the plan to show in AGDF Week 10 CDI. In the meantime, he explains it’s important that Everdance enjoys some time to relax, get turned out, and go on trail rides before she gets back to the show ring.
Ots also says he appreciates the support from the Ruediger’s who couldn’t attend the show, but he could feel them cheering from across the country at Sonnenberg Farm in Oregon.
“The whole weekend was a very nice confirmation on the training plan, schedule and the foundation we’ve put together,” he concludes. It will be exciting to see what comes next.
Sonnenberg Farm, LLC, is a top breeding and training facility of KWPN dressage horses in North America, located in Sherwood, Oregon. Throughout the years, Sonnenberg has bred and trained many North American KWPN Keuring Champions/Res. Champions as well as multiple USDF Horse of the Year Champions, USDF/ODS Region Champions and USEF/Markel Young Horse/Developing Horse National Res. Champions.
Originally from De Pere, Wisconsin, Ots, who now calls Wellington, Florida home, has been competing since a young age and has been enjoying international victories for the past several years.
For more information on Sonnenberg Farm’s breeding program Visit www.sonnenberg.us
Text by Johnny Robb - Photos © Sue Stickle
Scores: 2020 CDI Wellington