Pinehurst, NC (August 15, 2014)– And the summer wins continue in Pinehurst, NC, with John Zopatti and Fabio at the Early Morning Blues dressage show, August 9-10. Dressage judge Debbie Rodriguez placed the pair first in the FEI Open Grand Prix Freestyle division with a score of 69.125% over Lynn Leath and her Hanoverian d’Artagnan with a score of 68.000%. Fabio is an 18-year-old Oldenburg gelding, by West Coast out of a Thoroughbred mare, owned by Kristy Truebenbach Lund. Fabio has been ridden and trained by Zopatti his entire life.
Zopatti, a USDF Gold medalist, was again thrilled with Fabio’s performance. “We tried to make it a little bit more difficult than we had done in previous shows,” he said. “We tried to add in a few more changes, then some changes on bending lines, and but I think overall he was pretty steady. And for an 18-year-old horse, he just went out and did his job. At this age it’s basically just trying to keep him fit and happy in his job. So far he doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.”
Zopatti’s goal for the show was to receive a qualifying score for the Great American Insurance Group/USDF Region 3 Dressage Championships, which are set to be held during the Classic Autumn Challenge at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL, October 16-19, 2014. Thanks to his win at the Early Morning Blues show, Zopatti qualified with Fabio well before the end of the qualifying season, which ends on September 22.
So far, eight other riders have qualified for the regional championships for the Grand Prix Freestyle division along with Zopatti. At this point, if they all attend the regional championships, Zopatti could find himself competing against Elizabeth Campbell and Royal Diamant, Janne Rumbough and Junior, Matthew McLaughlin and Cooper V, Shelley Van Den Neste and Rodeo, Lynnettte Wadsworth and Wietze G, Susan Dutta and Currency DC, Mikala Gundersen and My Lady, and Franziska Seidl and Sigalia. Other riders may yet still qualify for Grand Prix Freestyle.
Until then, Zopatti’s summer of working with clients in Pinehurst and teaching dressage clinics in various states will continue. “The weather, besides the rain, has been a bit cooler than normal, and it has given me a nice opportunity to continue the training with a few of the horses I brought up from Florida, and I am enjoying my new clients in North Carolina” he said.
For over a decade, Zopatti has taught clinic’s yearround in Southern Pines, NC filled wit both Dressage and eventing Clients. However, his clinic schedule recently took him to Rehoboth, MA, at the end of July. And he will soon hit Austin, TX, to teach a three-day clinic organized by Grace Harris of Waterloo Dressage, starting on August 20. He will also give another clinic in Massachusetts before he heads home to Wellington on October 1 in preparation for the USDF Region 3 championship show.
To learn more about John Zopatti, visit www.johnzopatti.com or call 561-722-7555.
Photo: John Zopatti Aboard His Oldenburg Gelding Fabio Gearing Up For The Great American Insurance Group/USDF Region 3 Dressage Championships.
(Photo Courtesy Of Michael Pritchett Photography)
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