Monthly Archives: March 2015

World’s Best Coming to Las Vegas for the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final – Don’t Miss This Chance to See the Legendary Valegro and Other Stars of the Sport

U.S. dressage fans are in for a treat. The FEI has released the official list of riders and horses that are coming to Las Vegas to compete at the 2015 Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final, and for those who want to see the best the sport has to offer, it is going to be a dream come true.

Yes it’s official. Olympic Gold medalist Charlotte Dujardin of Great Britain and her wonder horse Valegro are coming to Las Vegas to defend the FEI World Cup™ title they won last year in Lyon, France! The pair has literally rewritten the world record books, breaking every record in the Grand Prix, Grand Prix Special and Grand Prix Freestyle, and becoming the only pair in history to hold all four major dressage titles simultaneously as they are presently the Olympic, World, European and Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ champions.

Golden duo Charlotte Dujardin & Valegro (c) FEI / Arnd Bronkhorst

Golden duo Charlotte Dujardin & Valegro (c) FEI / Arnd Bronkhorst

This is the first U.S. appearance for Dujardin and Valegro since competing at the World Dressage Masters in Wellington, Florida in 2012, just months before winning double Gold medals at the 2012 London Olympics. And with the widely-circulated rumor that Valegro may be retired after the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, this may be the last chance for U.S. fans to see this history-making pair compete on U.S. soil.

Joining Dujardin in the Las Vegas line-up are other superstars of the sport including Isabell Werth of Germany, an Olympic Gold medalist and two-time World Champion as well as a former World Cup winner. Werth is bringing two horses that have already competed in FEI World Cup™ Finals. She rode El Santo NRW at last year’s Final in Lyon, while Don Johnson competed at the 2013 Final in Gothenburg, Sweden. Werth is well known as a tough competitor and will no doubt give Dujardin a run for her money. Countrywomen Fabienne Lutkemeier, who will be competing D’Agostino, her Team Gold medal-winning horse at the 2014 WEG, and Jessica von Bredow-Werndl, who will be competing her 2014 World Cup Final partner Unee BB, join her in the line-up.

The top three from the World Cup qualifier in s'Hertogenbosch are all coming to Las Vegas: (l-r) Hans Peter Minderhoud (Glock's Flirt), Isabell Werth (Don Johnson) and Edward Gal (Glock's Voice) (c) FEI

The top three from the World Cup qualifier in s’Hertogenbosch are all coming to Las Vegas: (l-r) Hans Peter Minderhoud (Glock’s Flirt), Isabell Werth (Don Johnson) and Edward Gal (Glock’s Voice) (c) FEI

Another of the sport’s biggest names, former World and FEI World Cup™ Champion Edward Gal of The Netherlands, will be making the trip to Las Vegas for the third time to compete in his ninth Final overall. He is entered with Glock’s Undercover, the horse on whom he won a team Bronze medal at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG) last summer, and also at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. He will be joined by Hans Peter Minderhoud, a fellow Dutch Olympian and Gal’s 2010 WEG Gold medal teammate, who will be making his fifth FEI World Cup™ Finals appearance and second trip to Las Vegas. This time it will be aboard Glock’s Flirt, the horse on whom he’s had several top placings at FEI World Cup™ qualifying competitions.

Steffen Peters & Legolas 92 at WEG 2014 (c) Susan J. Stickle

Steffen Peters & Legolas 92 at WEG 2014 (c) Susan J. Stickle

U.S. rider Steffen Peters, a three-time Olympian and a former FEI World Cup™ Champion, will be putting the pressure on his fellow competitors as he will be looking to reclaim the title he won in Las Vegas aboard Ravel in 2009.  In this Final, he will be riding Legolas 92, the horse he rode at the 2014 WEG. The pair is fresh from winning two World Cup™ qualifiers back-to-back and earning their personal best score together. Teammate Laura Graves has exploded onto the dressage scene with her 2014 WEG horse Verdades, and the pair just seem to be getting better and better each time out. They had two World Cup qualifier wins just a week apart earlier this month and appear more than ready for the Final.

FEI World Cup™ Final first-timers include Spanish Olympic rider Morgan Barbancon Mestre with her 2012 Olympic mount Painted Black, whom she also rode at the 2014 WEG. Sweden’s Paulinda Friberg will compete Di Lapponia T, while Malin Hamilton will be aboard Fleetwood. Denmark’s Agnete Kirk Thinggaard is entered on Jojo AZ .

Laura Graves (USA) & Verdades at WEG 2014 (c) Susan J. Stickle

Laura Graves (USA) & Verdades at WEG 2014 (c) Susan J. Stickle

Russian Olympian Elena Sidneva will be making her second appearance in Las Vegas, this time with her 2014 Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Final partner Romeo Star, while countryman Tatiana Dorofeeva will compete Kartsevo Upperville, the horse she rode at the 2014 WEG.

The four riders who earned ‘FEI extra starting places’ are all seasoned competitors with top international experience. Olympian Lars Petersen of Denmark will be competing his 2014 WEG horse Mariett, marking Petersen’s third trip to an FEI World Cup™ Final. Fellow Danish rider Mikala Gunderson will be riding her 2014 FEI World Cup™ Final horse, My Lady, whom she also competed at the 2014 WEG. Inessa Merkulova of Russia, a four-time WEG veteran, will be competing Mister X, the horse she rode at last year’s FEI World Cup™ Final in Lyon. Finland’s Terhi Stegars has earned her ticket aboard her 2014 WEG partner Axis TSF.

The 2015 Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Final is only three weeks away and it’s going to be a rare chance to see the world’s best dressage riders and horses all under one roof in the “Entertainment Capital of the World!” And did I mention that Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro are going to be there?  Don’t miss your chance to be part of history. Get your tickets before it’s too late!

Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and Valegro will be defending their title after clinching the 2014 Reem Acra FEI World Cup Final in Lyon, France © FEI/ Dirk Caremans

Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and Valegro will be defending their title after clinching the 2014 Reem Acra FEI World Cup Final in Lyon, France © FEI/ Dirk Caremans

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Celebrity Chef Creations and Spectacular Wine Wall Await VIP’s at the Taylor Harris Club presented by The National Horse Show

For those of you who have already purchased a VIP ticket package to the 2015 FEI World Cup™ Finals in Las Vegas, you will be glad you did. And for those of you haven’t yet, you are going to want to get one. In addition to the premier seating from which VIP members will watch the world’s best jumping and dressage riders compete for the coveted World Cup™ titles, there will be phenomenal food and drink at the Taylor Harris Club presented by The National Horse Show. The luxury amenities and the unrivaled epicurean fare is only available to VIP ticket holders, and it’s going to be amazing!

Taylor Harris Club presented by The National Horse Show

Celebrity chefs from the Bellagio hotel, including Chef Edmund Wong, Executive Chef for Bellagio, Chef Royden Ellamar of Sensi, and Chef Patrick Lee of Noodles will prepare mouth-watering delicacies each day for VIP members. The five-star menu will include:

Thursday:

Sensi – 10am

  • Super Grain Salad, Kale, Line Caught Albacore Tuna Confit
  • Crab Cake BLT

Noodles – 5pm

  • Wok Fried Crabmeat Brown Rice with X.O. Sauce
  • Pan Fried Pot Sticker, Dumpling Sauce
  • Salt & Pepper Soft Shell Crab Burger, Thai Sweet Chili Sauce

Friday:

Sensi – 10am

  • Tandoori Chicken and Mango Salad, Organic Lettuce, Goat Cheese
  • Early Melon Gazpacho, Hand Pulled Mozzarella, Mint and Basil Pistou

Tuscany Kitchen – 5pm

  • Boneless Citrus glazed Pork Ribs, Red Jalepeno, Cilantro
  • Grilled Shrimp and Chorizo Robata, Avocado and Tomatillo Salsa

Saturday: 

Noodles – 10am

  • Shrimp & Pork Dumpling
  • Mustard Sauce & Cucumber Pickles
  • Honey Barbeque Pork Rice
  • Roasted Barbeque Pork & Fragrant Rice
  • Greens & Soy Reduction

Sensi – 5pm

  • Smoked Beef Brisket, King’s Hawaiian Sweet Rolls, Red Onion Marmalade, Savoy Slaw
  • Carolina Broken Rice Risotto, Rice Flake Crusted Shrimp, Pickled Asian Vegetables

Sunday:

Noodles – 10am

  • Dim Sum Shrimp Ball
  • Deep Fried Shrimp ball, wrap with Shredded Flakes.
  • Mayo Dressing
  • Wok Fried Noodles
  • Wok Fried Sweet Spicy Noodles with Shrimp
Southern Wine winebarrels

Southern Wines and Spirits of Nevada ‘Wine Wall’

In addition to the five-star food, there will also be a bevy of beverages to quench your thirst. Along with champagne and beer, VIP guests will be able to sample a collection of fine wines and interact with the sommelier from Southern Wines and Spirits of Nevada. The ‘wine wall’ will feature:

White: 2011 Iberian Remix Albarino, Edna Valley, CA

From two cool climate vineyards we call the “Bay and Beach” one about 2 miles from Pismo Beach and another about 2 miles from the San Francisco Bay in Carneros. Known for being a quintessential seafood white with a core of crisp lemon fruit and almost saline minerality. Aromatic flavors of meyer lemon, orange blossom and jasmine flowers, clean mineral finish. Touch of creamy lees on mid palate.

White: 2012 Au Bon Climat Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County, CA

Jim Clendenen is the “Mind Behind” Au Bon Climat creating internationally recognized, Burgundian-focused wines of balance and intrigue. This barrel fermented, full bodied Chardonnay has mouth filling citrus fruit and a palate cleansing, bright finish. It will become richer and more complex with age.

Red: 2012 Summerland Merlot, Paso Robles, CA

Well-balanced red with gorgeous fruit flavors of blackberry, chocolate covered cherries, blackcurrant and juicy plums. The oak on this wine is beautifully integrated allowing notes of cedar, vanilla and charred wood to marry with the fruit and soft tannins. Pair this wine with succulent pork roast, cheesy gratin or chicken liver pâté.

Red: 2012 Proletariat Red Blend, Columbia Valley, CA

This distinctive blend  of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot and 7% Malbec offers a lively balance of raspberry, dark cherry and pomegranate against fine, velvety tannins. Offers freshness and immediate appeal.

Bubbles: Pere Ventura Tresor Brut Rosé Cava, Spain

Pere Ventura’s wine producing vocation is rooted in a family tradition dating back to the 19th century. When he decided to found his namesake winery in 1992, he did so in honor of his ancestors. Pere’s family heritage with Cava dates back to 1872, when his great grandfather, Manuel Montserrat Font, helped produced the first bottles of Cava at Codorniu. Intense and deep pink with persistent, fine bubbles. Clean and sophisticated aromas of red fruits with a slight note of rose petal. Fresh and elegant flavors of strawberry, raspberry and cherries with a long lasting finish.

Live music and special Las Vegas entertainment will accompany the first-class cuisine and service for VIP members, along with the luxury amenities and VIP parking. In addition to admission to the Taylor Harris Club, a VIP Package also includes one premier All-Session seat to watch the world-class action. VIP Packages cost $1,500 per person for either the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final or the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final. A VIP Combination Package for BOTH Finals can be purchased for $2,950.

It’s going to be gastronomic glee at the 2015 FEI World Cup™ Finals in the Taylor Harris Club presented by The National Horse Show. If you haven’t done so already, buy your VIP package now or you are going to miss out!