Usually when one says, "third time lucky," they've garnered a coveted award after two tough losses.
For Pemberton's Dreamcatcher Meadows, however, it looks like a third consecutive United States Dressage Federation (USDF) Breeder of the Year Award will finally unlock some added benefits. Jill Giese, who founded and owns the operation with John Dingle, said their answering machine was loaded with more messages than after either of their first two honours upon returning from the awards banquet in Las Vegas.
"We came back to over 100 messages on the telephone and it crashed our satellite. We had to have a whole new satellite installed," she said. "We've had a lot of inquiries for purchasing the horses, which is most unusual, because in the horse industry, at this time of year, nobody's shopping."
The stable took home the evening's big honour, the Stallion Expo Trophy, rolling to the breeder of the year award, earning a median score of 95 points. Runner-up Maurine Swanson posted a median of 69.
"I totally see the sporthorse breeder of the year award not presented to our farm, as in John and I. I see it as presented to our staff, our volunteers, supporters... and the owners of the horses who are sponsoring," she said.
Adding to the excitement was the Hannoveraner Verband opting to recognize Dreamcatcher Meadows further, presenting Giese and Co. with an additional certificate, the Ehrenurkunde, which is presented to recognize exceptional contribution to sporthorse breeding and competition.
"Dr. (Ludwig) Christmann, who is the head of the Hanoverian Society, flew all the way from Verden, Germany to Las Vegas to present us with a special award," Giese said. "That's a really big deal.
"When he comes over to North America, it's usually to do a two-month tour visiting 80 farms inspecting all the foals, so for him to fly over just to do that (is big). They had to even pass a special bylaw at the USDF for him to do this, because normally only the society president and executives are allowed to speak and do the presentations."
As well, one of the stable's major supporters, Bus Fuller of the Earls and Joey restaurant chains, was also honoured for his sponsorship.
In terms of individual horses, D-Trix DMV, ridden by Dingle, was named Materiale Horse of the Year in the three-year-old colt or gelding category. He earned a score of 82.7.
In the four-and-five-year-old stallion and gelding division, Leopold DMV eked out the win by a tenth of a point while Lordsley DMV took third place in the division.
"(Leopold) is only four, and usually, that (award) is won by a five-year-old," Giese said, noting his score of 87.1. "He also was the highest-scoring horse of all horses for 2015 and won a special trophy (the Sunshine Sport Horse Association Trophy). "They have four major awards and we took home two of them."
Giese noted that Dreamcatcher Meadows entered 10 horses in the competition and each one went home with either champion or reserve champion recognition. The organization and its horses ended up with 11 medals in the year-end all breeds awards as well.
Giese said that heading into 2016, the stable is seeking additional sponsorship to help grow its programs even further.