JUNE 2019 THE RIDER /29 Dana Cooke Scores First FEI Win

At Jersey Fresh International Three-Day Event CCI 3*-S

Ottawa, ON, May 13, 2019 – Dana Cooke, a Canadian who currently resides in Mooresville, NC, earned her first FEI level win at the Jersey Fresh International Three- Day Event, held May 8-12, 2019, in Allen- town, NJ. Dana added this noteworthy accom-

plishment to her record riding FE Missis- sippi

nine-year-old Dutch Sport Horse mare owned by the FE Mississippi Syndicate LLC, with whom she is aiming for the 2019

(Cassini II x Legaat), the

itiveness from day one of the Jersey Fresh International Three-Day Event, starting off strong with a sixth-place finish in the dres-

a four-year-old, so we know each other so well and have incredible trust in each other,” said Dana of the beloved grey she calls “Missi”. “I think an FEI win just so- lidifies how strong our relationship is and that we can be a competitive combination.” Dana and Missi showed that compet-

Pan American Games in Lima, PER. “We have been together since she was

sage phase on May 9 with a score of 30.00 penalty points. The duo then pushed through an action-packed day on May 11 to earn a double-clear round in both the show jumping and cross-country phases. By completing the cross-coun- try course five seconds under the optimum time of 6 minutes and 11 seconds, Dana and Missi secured the win on their dressage score of 30.00 penalties – just a scant .70 penalty points ahead of second-place fin- isher, American Olympian Boyd Mar- tin.

Dana sped cleanly through the show jumping and cross-country phases to finish on her dressage score of 30.00 penalties for the win. Photo Credit: Amy Flemming Waters Photography

with how we both performed,” said Dana. “I still have a little fine-tuning to do in dressage to get a few extra marks, but the overall quality is get- ting so much better. Missi jumped super both show jumping and cross- country and tried her heart out. I knew that if I made time that I could poten- tially win, but I tried to push that out of my mind and focus on giving Missi a good ride. I always tell myself, ‘good jumps first, speed second’ – something that [coach, Clayton Fred- ericks (AUS)] has said to me a few times. I heard my minute markers

“I am super excited and happy

made all the more impressive consid- ering she was up against a crowded field of over 50 entries comprised of top riders and Olympians from around the world – including her own coach, Clayton. She commented, “It’s a bit surreal, you work so hard and put so much into the horses and the sport, so it’s a pretty amazing feeling when it pays off. This win isn’t just mine; they say it takes a village and I couldn’t have done it without my village. I

going off and knew I was pretty close, but wasn’t paying too much attention to them until my sixth minute went off and I realized that I could really make it, so I pushed for home.” Dana’s first international win is

have an amazing groom, owners, vet, farrier, sponsors, family, coaches, and support staff.” Dana and Missi weren’t the only

Hanoverian gelding, Vermont (Van Helsing x Heraldik XX) with a final score of 32.80 penalties. Also in the top 10 was Shelby Brost of Red Deer, AB, and Crimson (Etta x Cojak), the 16-year-old Thoroughbred mare she co-owns with Wayne Brost, who came in ninth place on a final score of 37.60 penalties.

Canadians to leave their mark in the CCI 3*-S division: Colleen Loach of Dunham, QC, placed fourth with Peter Barry’s


win of her career with FE Mississippi at the Jersey Fresh International Three-Day Event, held May 8-12, 2019, in Allentown, NJ. Photo Credit: Amy Flemming Waters Photography

Lynn Palm Continued from Page 28

give you the full benefit of the stretches.

#5 Tail Touches Here’s a fun exercise to

stretch the upper and lower back and abdominal mus- cles. Keeping the legs in proper position, hold the reins with the right hand. Rotate the upper body to the left and reach the left hand back toward the top of the horse’s tail. Hold on to the saddle with the hand hold- ing the reins if needed.

#6 Leg-Over-The-Shoul- der Stretch It may some like some-

thing a contortionist would do, but this challenging ex- ercise helps develop leg and inner thigh muscles as well as balance. Start with legs in normal riding position and feet out of the stirrups. With the knee slightly bent, bring the right leg above the neck with the foot extended to- ward the horse’s head. Then bend the knee and extend the lower leg and foot across the horse’s neck and down toward his left shoulder as you grasp the cantle with your left hand for stability. The leg should be held up and above the horse’s neck and shoulder by several inches. Bring the leg back over the horse’s neck and re- turn it to normal riding po- sition. Alternate with the opposite leg. The goal with this exercise is not to touch the horse’s neck. If he is not

used to this type of move- ment from you or reacts, just lift your leg to the mid- dle of his neck and scratch his neck with your toe.

#7 Knee Touches With both hands be-

hind you, grasp the cantle keeping the elbows slightly bent. Bring the upper body back slightly as you lift both knees up at the same time. Touch the knees together over the horse’s withers or the saddle horn and slowly bring them back to the start- ing position. Slightly rock- ing the upper body back as you do this exercise makes the hip joint more flexible. Be careful not to kick your horse! This is a challenging exercise that also builds leg and abdominal muscle strength. If you can only bring the knees up part way, it’s OK. Keep practicing a little at a time until you can touch them together.

#8 Side Leg Lifts This exercise is done

the same way as was done on the ground. It really works the inner muscles and hip area. Take both feet out of the stirrups. Lift and ex- tend one leg out to the side, while keeping the other down in proper riding posi- tion. Do several lifts on each side. You should notice a feeling of sitting deeper in the saddle after completing them.

#9 Upper Thigh & Ankle Flex

This is a great exercise for stretching the quadri-

Canadian Dana Cooke of Mooresville, NC, earned the first international

ceps, the large front thigh muscle, and improving ankle flexibility. Let’s start with the right leg. Taking the right foot out of the stir- rup, flex the knee and bring the foot up and behind you to the back of the saddle’s cantle. Grasp the back of the ankle with your right hand as you keep the foot flexed. Hold this stretch for 5-10 seconds and breathe! Keep the knee on the saddle and stretch the upper leg down. Then release the ankle and allow the lower leg to stretch back down to- ward the stirrup. Repeat with the other leg.

#10 Toe Points With feet out of the

stirrups, flex one ankle so the toes point upward. Hold for a few seconds. Then flex the ankle so the toes point toward the ground. Do five toe points on each foot.

These head-to-toe ex-

ercises on-the-ground and under saddle will give you the minimal


needed before each ride. To really improve flexibility, strengthen muscles and joints, and relax, I would recommend my 3-part “Ex- ercises for Equestrians” videotape series. The tapes cover 75 different exercises that can be done on the ground or under saddle. They will take you to the next step in being the rider your horse deserves.

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