The dirt flew and the red, white and blue waved proudly as elite reiners for Team USA clinched the country’s fifth-consecutive gold medal at the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina.
Comprised of four riders—with the top three scores tallying to the team results—Team USA earned a cumulative score of 681, besting the field of 12 teams by nearly 10 points.
Riders for Team USA were:
- Casey Deary (Weatherford, Texas) rode Heavy Duty Chex, a 7-year-old Quarter Horse stallion owned by Hilldale Farm
- Dan Huss (Scottsdale, Arizona) rode Ms Dreamy, an 8-year-old Paint/Quarter Horse mare owned by Frederick R. Christen
- Jordan Larson (Valley View, Texas) rode ARC Gunnabeabigstar, a 7-year-old Paint-bred Quarter Horse stallion (eligible for APHA registration) owned by HDC Quarter Horses USA LLC
- Cade McCutcheon (Aubrey, Texas) rode Custom Made Gun, a 7-year-old Paint/Quarter Horse stallion owned by Tim and Colleen McQuay
Team USA’s morning started off strong with a 223.5 from Casey Deary, but it was youngster Cade—just 18 years old—who brought down the house with a 229 during the first set of 30 horses aboard Custom Made Gun; the tremendous score stuck throughout the rest of the day, topping all 63 runs.
“I was really nervous, but having all these guys at the gate with me at the gate helped, and that support made a big difference,” Cade said; his ride with solid Paint-bred Custom Made Gun is a family affair, as the 2011 palomino solid stallion was bred and initially trained by his grandparents, Tim and Colleen McQuay. “My grandfather trained and showed him as a 2- and 3-year-old, and I took him over as a 4-year old. He’s been really good for me—very honest in the show pen. He’s a once-in-a-lifetime horse.”
The early lead for Team USA held steady thanks to strong efforts by Dan Huss and Ms Dreamy, a 2010 chestnut solid mare, who slid to a 226.5. While other horses might have singular stellar moves, Dan credits Ms Dreamy for her consistent talent across all maneuvers.
“She’s honest—that’s her trait,” Dan said. “She listens and she tries to stay with you. She might not be the fastest spinning horse in the pen, but she’ll make it up in other ways.”
Though his USA teammates had laid down scores high enough to clinch gold already, Jordan Larson and ARC Gunnabeabigstar pushed the lead further, charging to a 225.5.
Congratulations to the silver and bronze medal-winning teams:
- Dries Verschueren and Smart N Sparkin
- Ann Poels and Made In Walla
- Cira Baeck and Gunners Snappy Chic (Colonels Smokingun x Chics Miss Snap)
- Bernard Fonck and What A Wave
- Gischa Ludwig and Ruf Lil Diamond (Jazalena Diamond x Jarmines Ruf Blonde)
- Markus Suchting and Spotlight Charly
- Robin Schoeller and Wimpy Kaweah
- Julia Schumacher and Coeurs Little Tyke
The reining excitement at the World Equestrian Games continues throughout the week with individual competition; the second individual qualifying rides begin Thursday, September 13 at 2 p.m. ET. APHA is an official media partner of the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games. Discover more of the excitement by following APHA’s coverage of the reining events on Facebook and Instagram.
[Reprinting all of part of this story is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provide back to apha.com.]
The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded in 1962. APHA promotes, preserves and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses.
About the Tryon International Equestrian Center
Tryon International Equestrian Center at Tryon Resort, host of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, is one of the world’s premier equestrian lifestyle destinations. From carousel to competition, the mission of Tryon Resort is to celebrate the magic of the horse, grow equestrian sport, and increase access to this majestic animal. With first-class facilities for hunter/jumper, dressage, and eventing competitions, the facility will soon accommodate all eight equestrian disciplines. Tryon Resort is a spring, summer and fall haven for equestrian competitors and enthusiasts, and a year-round destination for connoisseurs of diverse cuisine and shopping, lodging getaways, and family entertainment. Learn more at www.Tryon.com.
About FEI World Equestrian Games™
The FEI World Equestrian Games™, held every four years in the middle of the Olympic cycle, is the property of the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), the world governing body for horse sport recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). It is one of the biggest events on the global sporting calendar, combining World Championships in the Olympic disciplines of Jumping, Dressage and Eventing, the Paralympic discipline of Para-Equestrian Dressage, as well as Driving, Endurance, Vaulting and Reining.
The inaugural FEI World Equestrian Games™ were hosted in Stockholm (SWE) in 1990. Since then the Games have been staged in The Hague (NED) in 1994, Rome (ITA) in 1998, Jerez (ESP) in 2002, and Aachen (GER) in 2006. The first Games to be organised outside Europe were the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Kentucky (USA) 2010. The Games came back to Europe for the 2014 edition, the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Normandy (FRA), which attracted more than 500,000 on-site spectators and a worldwide television audience of 350 million, as well as delivering an economic impact of €368 million to the French economy.
The FEI World Equestrian Games™ History Hub can be viewed here.