According to Glusenkamp, the 13-year-old stallion, who is owned by Paula Marsh of Wyning Edge Friesians in Boerne, TX, loves showing off for the crowd.
“He likes to compete, and he likes people – the more people are standing around, the more special he feels,” she laughed.
Glusenkamp said she appreciates the stallion’s levelheadedness, which makes him easy to handle and compete.
“He is very uncomplicated in everything,” she noted. “He breeds and he has babies on the ground, but he acts more like a gelding than any gelding we have. I can ship him with mares, I trail ride him with mares, and I have little children sit on him. I’ve had mares trying to get to him, and he won’t do anything. He won’t scream; he won’t do anything. Sometimes I’m not sure if he is still a stallion or not!”
“This is one of the highlights of him for sure,” she added. “I can trust that horse with all I have and never worry with him. I don’t care about the weather. We can have the world come to an end and he will still do it.”
Dressage in the Rockies is organized by the Colorado Horse Park and managed by Glenda McElroy of Cornerstone Event Management.
“We’re very excited about him,” Swafford said. “He teaches me a lot, and we’re a good partnership, I hope. He’s really fun. His one-tempis were great today, but we added two at the end, so we had 17. But the rest of the work felt really nice.”
Swafford’s goal is to qualify Romantic for the U.S. Dressage Finals in Lexington, KY.
“He’s really fun,” Swafford said. “He’s learning a lot. He’s more than enthusiastic but has that nice quiet demeanor, and he’s very soft.”
Swafford traveled to Dressage in the Rockies from his home base in Santa Fe, NM, and he is coaching seven of his clients at the show. He said he enjoys making the trip to compete at the Colorado Horse Park because he feels it is a great venue, and he appreciated the opportunity to get the horses comfortable with the facility before the Great American/USDF Region 5 Dressage Championships in September.
“We love the footing – they have great footing,” he said. “Colorado’s always so welcoming and so nice to us when we come. Our goal here is to gain confidence since our championships are here. The horses are getting used to the golf carts and the tractors, all those little distractions, since it’s more indoors where we’re from.”
“The highlight today for me was how relaxed he was and how much he was listening to me,” DeHerrera said. “I had a lot of fun in the extended trot. It felt like we were both really together. I was smiling to myself while I was riding.”
DeHerrera, who has owned the 13-year-old Westphalian gelding since he was 5, said he was “super athletic” and a bit of a challenge as a youngster. She credited her trainers with giving her and Festivo the support they needed to excel.
“My horse got to this level with Kathleen Raine and David Wightman,” she explained. “My friend Anna Wood works for them, and she’s the one that did all the riding and training of him in the last year, making him into such a fun horse to show.”
“Between the horse and my kids and writing, it’s super busy and crazy,” she admitted. “But I’m so grateful to have the opportunity to do all of those things.”
She competed at High Prairie Dressage at the end of May and is happy to be back at the Colorado Horse Park for Dressage in the Rockies.
“I love showing at the Colorado Horse Park,” DeHerrera said. “Hopefully we’ll come back and do the [GAIG/USDF Region 5 Championships] in September. It’s just a great facility. It literally rained for days and we were able to show today.”
Dressage in the Rockies I wrapped up with a chance for exhibitors to kick back and relax at a party sponsored by Markel Insurance. Competition continues at the Colorado Horse Park with Dressage at the Rockies II and III on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday’s offerings include a full slate of performance classes, the $250 Add Back Rising Star Challenge for 4-, 5- and 6-year-old horses, and the Great American/USDF Sport Horse Breed Show.
Grand Prix – Open
Dressage in the Rockies I – Friday, Aug. 1
Dressage in the Rockies II – Saturday, Aug. 2
Dressage in the Rockies III – Sunday, Aug. 3
Colorado Horse Park Main Office: (303) 841-5550
Colorado Horse Park Main Office Fax: (303) 841-7879
Show Grounds Address: 7375 E Bayou Gulch Rd, Parker, CO 80134
From North: I-25S exit Ridgegate Parkway – go east under the freeway. Ridgegate Parkway to S. Chambers Road, approx 3 miles (Traffic light) – turn right/south onto Chambers Road. At end of Chambers Road turn left/east onto Hess Road. Hess Road to Parker Road/Hwy 83 – turn right/south onto Hwy 83 approx 4 miles to Bayou Gulch Road. (Traffic light). Follow signs to Colorado Horse Park.
From South: I-25N, exit Founder’s Parkway. Founder’s Parkway to Highway 86, approx 4 miles (traffic light). Turn east/left onto Hwy. 86 to Franktown/Hwy 83. At Franktown go north on 83 approx. 7 mi. to Bayou Gulch Rd. (Traffic light), turn right/east onto Bayou Gulch Rd. Follow signs to Colorado Horse Park.
About the Colorado Horse Park: Celebrating its 21th Anniversary, the Colorado Horse Park was founded by visionary Helen Krieble who acknowledged the need for a high-volume horse show and horse boarding facility to serve Colorado. The Colorado Horse Park welcomes more than 35,000 visitors per year and hosts over 40 competitions annually. CHP features a derby arena designed by Olympic-designer Linda Allen and a cross-country course designed by Olympic Gold Medalist David O’Connor and eventing super-star James Atkinson. There are 300 permanent stalls with capacity for more than 1,000 stalls.
The picturesque property, located only minutes from the town of Parker, hosts international equestrian events in multiple disciplines. Visitors enjoy the beautiful Colorado Rocky Mountain surroundings and access to miles of trails and open space. The Colorado Horse Park is committed to supporting equestrian education and amateur athletics, preserving open space, fundraising for local charities and supporting the community.
Visit CHP at: http://coloradohorsepark.com/
To access the schedule: http://coloradohorsepark.com/events