Dr. Cesar Parra to Represent the USA at the Longines FEI World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses

American Grand Prix competitor Dr. Cesar Parra and his Westphalian gelding Don Cesar (Desperados x Manhattan) have been selected to be the only horse-and-rider pair to represent the United States in the world’s most prestigious international competition for young dressage horses.

Dr. Cesar Parra and Don Cesar have been chosen to compete for the U.S. in the 2017 Longines FEI World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses (Photo courtesy Nuno Coelho Vicente)

The elite dressage duo will travel across the Atlantic to compete in the seven-year-old division of the 2017 Longines FEI World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses, which will take place in Ermelo, the Netherlands, on August 3rd through 6th.

Parra qualified Don Cesar after achieving an outstanding competition record this year in FEI 7-year-old Young Horse classes. The FEI 7-year-old tests are given at the Prix St. Georges level. Parra, who has competed for the US multiple times over the course of his career, is always thrilled and honored to accept the opportunity to represent his country.

“My personal goal as an athlete is always to represent my country in international competition- to look up and see my flag flying, and to know that I am there representing my country, it’s truly an unbelievable feeling,” observed Parra.

Among his past achievements representing the United States, Parra helped to secure a gold medal for team USA at the 2012 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, and he also represented the U.S. in the 2014 World Cup in Lyon, France. Dr. Parra has competed for the U.S. three separate times with three different horses in the World Dressage Championships, is a two-time World Cup Finalist, and has competed twice in the World Equestrian Games. In 2013, he won the individual silver medal in the Nations Cup aboard Van the Man, and has produced multiple national champions, both as a rider and as a trainer of others.

Parra, an Olympic veteran and founder of Performance Farms located in Jupiter, Florida, and Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, has been riding and training Don Cesar since the horse was three. During that time, Don Cesar, who is owned by GK Horses and Marcela Parra, has been consistently proving his capability to excel in the top levels of the sport. By 2016, the pair had won the silver medal at the U.S. Young Horse Championships in the 6-year old division, and this year they went on to dominate the 7-year-old classes in Florida’s competitive 12-week winter Adequan Global Dressage Festival with stellar scores of nearly 80%.

Parra hopes to deliver a powerful, yet refined performance at the competition. “My goal is to demonstrate as much synchronicity as possible with Don Cesar- smoothness, harmony, and softness. It’s also important for me that he enjoys the experience and feels proud of himself, regardless of how he places.”

The U.S. pair will take on a group of the world’s most superb seven-year-olds at the Ermelo event. Last year’s crowd included 20,000 visitors from 27 countries, and prize money reached 50,000 euro.