The Alltech Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) World Equestrian Games (WEG) kicked off on Aug. 23 in Normandy, France. Team USA showed up ready to give it their all in the reining, and took the gold medal in the Team Competition for the fourth-consecutive year.
Leading the Team USA pack was Springfield, Ohio, trainer Shawn Flarida riding Spooks Gotta Whiz, owned by Michell Kimball, of Encinitas, Calif., and bred by Clint Haverty, of Krum, Texas. The Equi-Stat Elite $5 Million Rider and the 7-year-old stallion (Spooks Gotta Gun x Prettywhizprettydoes x Topsail Whiz) marked a dominating score of 229.5.
Close behind them was Mandy McCutcheon, of Aubrey, Texas, and 10-year-old stallion Yellow Jersey (Wimpys Little Step x Ms Clara Melody x Mr Melody Jac), owned by McQuay Stables Inc., and bred by Peter Phinny, of Glen Arbor, Mich. The duo marked a score of 224, matching fellow teammates Andrea Fappani and Custom Cash Advance (Custom Crome x Cash In Roan x Topsail Cody), owned by Luga LLC, of Ardmore, Okla., and bred by Steve Simon, of Marietta, Okla. Jordan Larson showed HF Mobster (Colonels Smoking Gun [Gunner] x Dun Its Black Gold x Hollywood Dun It), owned by Heritage Farms, of Ogden, Utah, and bred by Rhodes River Ranch, of Arlington, Wash., to mark a score of 221.
Team USA earned the gold medal with a score of 677.5, the composite after the lowest score was dropped, which was 14 1/2 points above Team Belgium, who earned a 663 composite to take the silver medal. Team Austria took the bronze with 658.5.
The first Individual Competition qualifying round also took place, and Team USA made a huge presence. Included in the Individual Competition so far is Shawn Flarida riding Spooks Gotta Whiz, Mandy McCutcheon riding Yellow Jersey, Andrea Fappani riding Custom Cash Advance, Tom McCutcheon riding Dun Git A Nicadual and Jordan Larson riding HF Mobster.
The top 15 scores from the first individual competition, plus ties, are qualified to compete in the finals. After the second qualifying round on Aug. 28, the top five scores, including ties, will continue on to the finals, which is set to take place Saturday, Aug. 30.