Friday, April 16, 2010

Our Rolex Kentucky 3 Day Event Preview - Part 3: The Non-North-Americans

Less than a week until Rolex and finally, every last order of saddle pads, horse boots and Air-Coolers needed by the riders has been shipped. Yay!! Now, we just have to pray for good weather and great performances.

Peter Atkins

Helmet-cam Peter rides for Australia but lives in Vermont. His wife is American but when I asked him if he would ride for the US, he said no. He also rides in Ecogold saddle pads, which proves he has very good taste. He’s bringing HJ Hampton to Rolex. You’ve probably seen his cute little ears on the videos from Red Hills and The Fork but below are some videos where you can see the rest of the horse. At Rolex, feel free to cheer “go Hen go!”

Something you might not know… He’s looking for a web designer that's not going to charge him an arm and a leg to help him with his site and convert his videos.

Peter Atkins and HJ Hampton CIC3*W Wits End

Showjumping at 2009 Bromont are his helmet cam videos!

at Red Hills

Helmet cam at The Fork

Note: if you have a degree in English literature, stop reading right now!

OK, we are mainly going to cheer for our clients and Ecogold riders, because frankly, they are the bestests, nicests and most wonderfullest. But we can be good sports, and also appreciate riders that have less good taste in saddle pads (so far).

Oliver Townend
His horses have already landed in the US and unless that Iceland volcanic cloud keeps him from flying over, he’ll be the one to beat in Kentucky. He has 350,000 good reasons to try harder than any other rider. As he has the most to lose, you can bet he’s going to come out all guns blazing. If you’re a spectator, it puts another layer of intrigue (will he, won’t he?) to what is already an exciting show!

If he wins, I think we’ll be able to hear the screams of all his English fans watching online. I saw him win at Burghley and the roof just exploded!

Something you might not know
… We met him at the Royal Winter Fair and were pleasantly surprised. Some riders we meet for the first time are somewhat guarded until we get to know them better, but he was very friendly and quite funny, with a quick wit and dry sense of humor.

Oliver Townend wins 2009 Burghley Horse Trials!

Oliver Townend and Carousel Quest, XC at 2009 Burghley

Clayton Fredericks
Another rider from the other side of the pond, he was 5th at Burghley Horse Trials with Poilu (Zara Phillips now rides that horse). He’s bringing The Frog to Rolex - don’t know who names his horses... We met Clayton and his wife Lucinda a couple of months ago in Aiken, SC but it was so cold, we could have been in Siberia. They kept on giving the clinic without complaining, joking around. The riders really appreciated the lessons, they are very positive trainers and came across as genuinely nice people. Big thumbs up! So we’re hoping he does well too.

Something you might not know…
Clayton not only rides, trains and gives clinics but he is also the chairman of the Event Riders’ Association, runs a saddlery business with his brother (Southern Stars Saddlery) and apparently, sings in a band.

Here are a couple of videos, one from 2009 Burghley Horse trials and the other one is a look at Team Fredericks, filmed before the 2008 Olympic Games

Our video from Burghley – Clayton and Poilu, Showjumping

Video about Team Fredericks – filmed before the 2008 Olympics

So that concludes our Rolex preview, with a look at all the riders we'll be watching. Become a fan of our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter as we will be posting updates next week. If you are coming to Rolex, come see us in the shopping area (next to Prestige Saddles), and don't miss our autograph sessions with top riders Boyd Martin, Buck Davidson, Karen O'Connor and Phillip Dutton. See you in Kentucky! :)

- Patricia

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