WELLINGTON, FL - October 15, 2007 - Todd Flettrich of Coatesville, Pennsylvania, and Wellington, Florida, competed Amadeus in two Grand Prix classes at an indoor national horse show in Zierow, Germany, on October 6-7, and successfully finished in the top three on both days. On Saturday, Flettrich and Amadeus contested the Short Grand Prix and finished with 800 points (65.70%), placing third in a field of 14 horses. On Sunday, Flettrich and Amadeus competed in the Grand Prix, earning 961 points (66.70%) for second place on the roster of 14 contenders. Amadeus is a nine-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by Cherry Knoll Farm.
Flettrich has been in Germany this summer training with Hubertus Schmidt and gaining European ring exposure for Amadeus, a talented international caliber horse that he has been paired with for two years. The Zierow show was the second outing in Germany for Flettrich and Amadeus, who made their European debut at Verden in August.
Assessing his ride in the Short Grand Prix at Zierow, Flettrich said, "I was a little concerned that Amadeus might be spooky because this was an indoor show and they had bleachers along the kickboard, but he went in the arena and was not spooky at all. I rode conservatively, but I made no obvious mistakes, which was my goal. I was delighted with the test."
In the Grand Prix, Flettrich was edged out of first place by only 24 points. Commenting on his Grand Prix test, Flettrich said, "I tried to go for it a little bit more - to ride a little bit more expression in his movements. At the beginning of my two-tempis I had a few ones, but Amadeus was really on my side and it was just a miscommunication. He was really trying to please. He was very eager."
The Zierow show was open to horses competing at Prix St. Georges and above only, with three German judges officiating. Flettrich chose to compete at Zierow, a 14-hour roundtrip from his base in Paderborn, Germany, because of the excellent footing and judging panel. Flettrich is accumulating points in German national shows so that he and Amadeus can compete this fall in German CDIs, which require scores of 64% at two different national shows with judging panels comprised of two or more judges.
Flettrich was pleased to report that he successfully accomplished his first set of national scores and was happy with his placings in the top three at Zierow. He also received a personal compliment after his final salute in the Grand Prix when the judge at C commented to him in English, "You rode a very good test!"
In addition to accomplishing his score goals, Flettrich was pleased with handling his first 'solo' outing in Europe. "For the first time ever, I competed all by myself - I had no groom, no trainer, and I went to an area where they don't speak much English. It was a little extra stress being in an area where I didn't know anyone and having to travel such a far distance, but I wanted to compete at a good show with good footing and three judges," Flettrich explained. "I did it by myself - it was important and I was really pleased. Although they didn't speak English, the people tried to be helpful and the hospitality was great. I had a great time."
Flettrich was especially pleased with Amadeus's performance at Zierow. The gelding was injured last year and Zierow was only his second show after returning to competition this summer. "Zierow certainly is a stepping stone for the big international competitions," Flettrich said. "It was a very good training show opportunity. Amadeus was very amenable and very accepting of everything. I couldn't have asked for any better."
Flettrich is scheduled to compete next at German national shows in Hanover and Paderborn.