Sunday, February 17, 2013

Abu Dhabi: USA Young Riders Participate in Presidents Cup

February 17 2013

While the outcome of the Abu Dhabi Presidents Cup wasn't what the girls expected, the experience was everything and more.

With 132 starters, and with the winners finishing the FEI*** 160-km race in 6:07.08 at an average speed of 26.14 km/h, Jessica DiCamillo and Devan Horn concentrated on their own ride, concentrating on their objective of 16 mph (10 mi/h). Jessica rode DJB Black Al Badi (aka Diesel) owned by Darolyn Butler, and Devan Horn rode CJS Maverick owned by Ceci Butler and Jason Stasiuk.

It wasn't to be for Devan early in the ride: "Maverick and I unfortunately retired after 40 miles for a slight front end lameness, but we did such a good job while we were riding! Jessica and I were literally in last place and maintaining our goal of 10 mph."

Ceci Butler-Stasiuk also participated in the ride on a horse owned by Shaikha Madiya al-Maktoum, but it was not to be for Ceci either. Her horse was eliminated for lameness at gate 2.

The USA contingent of grooms and friends and parents had high hopes for Jessica and Diesel finishing, but the gelding was eliminated on metabolics at the next to last gate 5.

The eliminations didn't dampen their enthusiasm for this biggest ride in Abu Dhabi, which for the first time invited Young Riders from around the world. Devan said, "[Jessica and I] and all of our crew had an amazing time and such a wonderful experience here in Abu Dhabi. I'd like to thank all of our crew and everyone who helped us get here! I am so lucky to have gotten the chance to come over and ride!"