Canadian Dressage Riders Reign at Paxton Spring Classic

With over 18 riders racking up ribbons, Canadians dominated the Paxton Spring Classic, held May 11-13 in Ohio, USA.

Veteran rider Cindy Ishoy of Binbrook, ON took the Grand Prix division by storm, winning both the Grand Prix (65.958%) and the Grand Prix Freestyle (70.900%), riding her long-time partner and 2004 Olympic mount Proton, a 13-year-old Baden-Wurttemberger gelding Ishoy co-owns with her husband Neil.

Tina Busse-Irwin of Lakefield, ON, was also successful aboard Wendy Beresford and Ute Busse’s 11-year-old Holsteiner gelding Amicelli, placing just behind Ishoy for second in the Grand Prix, before finishing third in the Grand Prix Freestyle on a score of 65.300%.  

Additionally, Jessica Costello of King City placed second in the Grand Prix Special, riding Judy Elliott’s 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding Litmanen, while Nancy MacLachlan of Terra Cotta, ON took third riding her 11-year-old Ukrainian gelding Ariston. MacLachlan also earned sixth in the Grand Prix, with Costello taking eighth.

The Advanced division boasted over 30 competitiors, 14 of them being Canadian. The Prix St Georges saw Ishoy’s husband Neil receiv third place, after scoring 66.400% with his eight-year-old Hanoverian gelding Lonestar. Gillian Sutherland of Unionville, ON scored 66.100% aboard her nine-year-old Oldenburg gelding Great Tyme, to place fifth.

Belinda Trussell of Stouffville, ON and Grand Marnier, a 10-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Mark Trussell placed eighth on an even score of 65%, while Tom Dvorak of Hillsburgh, ON secured the ninth and 10th positions, riding Beaumarchais and Fortissimo respectively.

Sutherland was the top placed Canadian in the Intermediaire I, riding Great Tyme to a third place finish on a score of 67.450%. Brockville, ON resident Andrea Bresee rounded out the top five, receiving a score of 65.600% with Raffles, a 13-year-old Swedish Warmblood mare owned by Faith Berghuis and Gina Smith. Trussell and Grand Marnier earned seventh, while Costello took ninth, this time aboard Renoir, a 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Henry Chong.

In the Intermediaire I Freestyle, Canadians took the third through seventh positions, with Bresee and Raffles claiming third on a score of 67.100%. Dvorak scored just one point off Bresee (66.100%) to place fourth with Fortissimo. Ute Busse of Breslau, ON scored 65.450% for fifth aboard Lindor’s Finest, the 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood stallion she co-owns with Sylvia Carlton. Costello and Renoir received sixth place, and Susanne Dutt-Roth of Merrickville, ON rounded out the Canadian contingent in seventh place, partnered with AJA.

Canada was also well represented in the Young Riders (YR) division, with Andrea Wetzel of Sharon, ON earning second in the YR Team Test, as well as third in both the YR Prix St Georges, and YR Freestyle, paired with Widu Witulo, a 17-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Barbara Holden-Sinclair. Also competing was  Danielle McKinnon, a native of Aurora, ON who has moved up to the Young Rider level after a successful 2006 season where she helped the Canadian Junior Team secure the Silver Medal at the 2006 North American Junior/Young Riders’ Championships (NAJYRC) riding her 16-year-old Polish Warmblood gelding Noma Tender. Paired with Noma Tender, McKinnon secured fourth place in the YR Team Test, as well as fourth in the YR Prix St Georges.

The international judging panel at the Paxton Spring Classic included Canada’s own Cara Whitham, the only judge in the world to hold FEI ‘O’ status for Dressage and Eventing, as well as Col. Axel Steiner (FEI ‘O’, USA), Janet Lee Brown-Foy (FEI ‘I’, USA), Jacques Van Daele (FEI ‘I’, BEL)and Mercedes Campdera-Alatorre (FEI ‘C’, MEX). For full results and more information, visit

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