North Salem, N.Y. – Aug. 16, 2019 – Leatherdale Farm’s Fleur de Lis L (First Dance-EM De La Rosa, De Niro) and 19-year-old Canadian rider Vanessa Creech-Terauds are celebrating three podium finishes from their performances at the 2019 Adequan®/FEI North American Youth Championships that took place July 30-Aug. 4 in North Salem, New York. As Creech-Terauds and the 10-year-old Hanoverian’s second appearance in the NAYC arena together, they rode with confidence to impress judges during each day of competition, earning them top-three finishes in every test.
“Every year it’s a whole new ball game and a new challenge, but this championship is the best week of the year so I always look forward to it and push myself,” shared Creech-Terauds. “I’m very competitive, so that helps me stay motivated, and this year I really wanted to do well with Fleur in the Young Rider division because we had done so well in Juniors [earning the individual and freestyle silver medals at NAYC 2016]. I’m happy to say she exceeded my expectations. I’m so proud of this mare, that really keeps me going and I love her so much.”
The young rider picked up the ride on Fleur de Lis L in 2016 after the mare was started by Mike Suchanek, the young horse trainer at Leatherdale Farms’ base in Minnesota. With Suchanek in the irons, she won the Second Level Open Championship at the 2015 U.S. Dressage Finals as well as the Training Level Open Reserve Championship at the 2014 Finals.
In 2016, Creech-Terauds and Fleur de Lis L, who is sired by Leatherdale Farm’s Hanoverian stallion, First Dance, were a part of the NAYC Junior Riders division where they took home individual silver medals for both their Junior Individual test and their Junior Freestyle. The following year, they took a break from competing at NAYC when they traveled to Europe to train and compete in Denmark, Germany and England.
When they returned to the NAYC stage this summer, the pair competed in the Young Riders division, representing Team Ontario/Quebec in team competition. Creech-Terauds and her teammates put forth their best efforts against a competitive field of talented teams. Fleur de Lis L received a new personal best score of 72.5 percent during the team test, helping boost their team’s total score to 205.676. The team concluded with the silver medal for their efforts, only missing gold by .03 of a point.
“It’s amazing to me to come here and win the team silver medal in the Young Rider division,” said Creech-Terauds. “We’ve made so much progress together. I can’t thank her owner, Louise Leatherdale, enough for partnering me with this talented mare. It’s been the best experience of my life. She’s my favorite horse in the whole world.”
Maintaining their momentum, Creech-Terauds and the chestnut mare earned themselves another podium finish with an individual silver medial after receiving a 71.029 percent in the Young Rider Individual Test.
Topping off their successful week of top competition, Creech-Terauds and Fleur de Lis L claimed one last medal in the Young Rider Freestyle. A score of 73.49 percent secured the pair the bronze medal, only missing silver by .01 percent.
“Fleur gave it her all every single day and we laid out three tests that I am extremely proud of. It is always an honor to come to this event and represent our country, and bringing home three medals is truly a dream come true! Thank you, Fleur,” expressed Creech-Terauds. “I truly am the luckiest girl in the world to be able to ride Louise Leatherdale’s most amazing mare.”
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