December 5, 2022

Andrea Woodard and Her Students Enjoy Victories at World Equestrian Center Dressage IV

Andrea Woodard and Her Students Enjoy Victories at World Equestrian Center Dressage IV

The USEF-rated national dressage show at World Equestrian Center – Ocala, held October 20-23, featured action at all levels, from Training Level up to Grand Prix, with GAIG/USDF Regional Championship qualifying opportunities. The Dressage IV show is one of 11 dressage competitions at WEC sponsored by Hampton Green Farm and Discover Dressage.

Wellington, Florida-based professional Andrea Woodard made the four-hour trip to Ocala with two horses to compete, along with a host of pupils and clients she trains. Her four rides garnered four wins, all with scores north of 72%. Two of those victories came at Grand Prix level courtesy of Ravenna, her own 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare. Woodard has owned the daughter of Sir Donnerhall I since she was a three-year-old, having bought her when she was working at Helgstrand Dressage in Denmark and while she was pregnant with her son.

“It was really inconvenient, but I fell for her and ended up with two babies,” explained Woodard, who was born in New York but grew up in Denmark. “When I moved to the U.S., I brought her over here. She’s always shown talent but not always been the easiest horse to get through the levels, so it’s taken a bit longer than I thought. This show was an important piece of the puzzle; it’s been a while since we’ve taken her out, and it was a good opportunity to see how she would handle a new venue so I can get better at knowing how to prepare her. Just because a horse can do 15 one-time changes doesn’t mean they’re ready; they need the strength and capacity to chain it all together, and in different places. That’s a whole different ballgame.”

Rather than riding for maximum marks, Woodard opted to cap Ravenna’s power and ride two steady, confidence-building tests.

“We did two good, solid tests,” said Woodard, who was competing at WEC – Ocala for the first time. “I worked hard on making her feel good and secure at the level and now I can build on that and improve things like bringing the poll higher or adding a little more bend. The goal for her is CDIs, but I don’t want to be greedy and jump into that too fast. I’ll probably do a couple more national shows, and maybe come up to WEC again. It was a great experience. A whole group of my clients went together, and everyone was super happy. The facility is great with good, big stalls. There’s nothing different we’d ask for.”

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Andrea Woodard & Her Students Enjoy Victories at World Equestrian Center Dressage IV – World Equestrian Center