Wellington, FL – April 20, 2010- Based in Coatesville, PA, and Wellington, FL, Todd Flettrich has had a successful dressage career and is well on his way to qualifying for this year’s Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. A respected rider and trainer in his own right, Flettrich has worked with many well-known names in the dressage world, including Jessica Ransehousen, Hubertus Schmidt, and Oded Shimoni. Shimoni has known and trained Flettrich for almost 18 years, and fully supports his fellow competitor in his preparation for this world-class competition.
A familiar face on the international dressage scene, Oded Shimoni, is a veteran of two World Equestrian Games, two European Championships and has qualified two horses for the Olympic Games, riding for his native country of Israel. Oded divides his time in the United States between Pennsylvania in the summer and Wellington in the winter, and works with Flettrich, as both a friend and mentor, throughout the year.
“Todd is an extremely good horseman; he is very conscientious and very professional and serious about horse training,” Shimoni said. “He is also very serious about his clients. He is always willing to go the extra mile and do whatever it takes to do the best job that he can do with his horses, and especially with his international mounts.”
“He is very good at forming a partnership with the horses and he also has a special way of always peaking at the show. Many top riders peak the week before the show or the day before the show, but he has the ability to bring the horse to its best at the show, which is very special; I can’t even say that for myself,” Shimoni laughed. “Todd is always riding his best and he is very systematic in his riding.”
Flettrich certainly peaked at several shows this season with his mount Otto, a 13-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding (Rambo X Rampal), owned by Cherry Knoll Farm. The pair first joined forces in 2009 and have since earned several top placings throughout the country.
“I think that there is great teamwork between Otto and Todd,” Shimoni noted. “Otto has very special ways about him and they have taken some time to get to know each other, and I think that it really came together in the last few months.”
“I am there every morning at 7 o’clock, six days a week, and it is always the three of us, Otto, Todd, and me, so I see the improvement on a daily basis,” Shimoni continued. “There are disagreements between the two of them, but the work level has really been coming a long way and I couldn’t ask for more. They are really progressing in the right rhythm and even much more than expected and now that they have gotten to know each other it has become very nice to watch; it is very harmonious.”
Although Shimoni and Flettrich often end up competing against one another, Shimoni says that there is no competitive feeling, and that it absolutely makes him proud to see his student doing so well.
“I think that Todd is a very strong candidate for the American team for WEG. I think that he and Otto are one of the most successful combinations on the east coast, so I see very strong chances for them to do very well,” Shimoni acknowledged. “We will continue to work on making the horse stronger, especially in the connection. Everything else he does really well. He has super piaffe and passage, super changes and pirouettes. All of this is very good, but the connection is the hardest thing to keep, so that is our main focus, to keep the connection to its best on a daily basis.”
Todd Flettrich is based in Wellington, FL, has earned his USDF Silver and Gold Medals, and is a graduate of the USDF ‘L’ Judge Program. Flettrich competed at the North American Young Riders Championships (NAYRC) four times and won the Individual Gold Medal and Team Silver in 1991. Flettrich served as Region 1 Coach and Chef d’Equipe at NAYRC from 1988 through 1994. His student Catherine Malone won the Individual Gold in 2005. Flettrich’s current mounts are owned by Cherry Knoll Farm. For more information, call Todd Flettrich at 484-459-2749.
Photo Credit: Todd Flettrich and Otto. Photo by: Susan J. Stickle. Photograph may be used only in relation to this PMG press release.