Olympian Courtney King-Dye to ride Marydell Farm’s Don Principe

Published 3:45 pm Tuesday, July 21, 2009

This 10-year-old Hanoverian breeding stallion has been ridden and trained to Grand Prix by Jim Kofford of Raleigh, N.C., since he arrived in the United States at age six. With many national honors along the levels, &dquo;Prince&dquo; and Kofford became a very successful pairing that proceeded to the Grand Prix at age nine.

With great sadness, Kofford said recently, he had decided that to take Don Principe to the International Arena, he would need to sacrifice his ability to meet his obligations to his other clients. So in late June, Don Principe came to Columbus to be near his home farm while Kofford took the American bred Rhett to Michael Klimke&squo;s barn in Germany for the summer.

&dquo;Prince&dquo; is a workaholic that likes attention and under saddle work that challenges his mind and body.&bsp; The more work the better. &bsp;

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&uot;Many family, friends and breeders encouraged us to continue the dressage career that was starting to show such promise,&dquo; says Maryanna Haymon of Marydell Farm. &dquo;So we approached Courtney as Jim and Prince had worked with her in the summer of 2008. The clinic went well and Courtney&squo;s style and methods are similar to what Don Principe is accustomed to.&dquo;

Haymon says it was her farm&squo;s good fortune that King-Dye, who participated in the 2008 Olympics in China, had an opening in her barn, and this past Tuesday,&bsp; Don Principe made the 14-hour drive from North Carolina to New York.

Prince traveled well and arrived in good form, says Haymon.&bsp; &bsp;

&dquo;Wednesday morning, I watched as Courtney rode Prince,&dquo; she says. &dquo;I am impressed with Courtney&squo;s effective riding style and intuitive nature. The pair got along well. It was a bittersweet time for me – Prince was off to graduate school and I probably will not get to see him all that often.&dquo;

Don Principe has a dual career, in performance and in the breeding shed. Many Don Principe offspring have been USDF Horse of the Year Champions or Reserve Champions. &bsp;

Both fillies and colts have brought home many championships in the past five years. The oldest offspring are 4 and going well under saddle showing their sire&squo;s great work ethic and three very good gaits.

Don Principe&squo;s show schedule will be up to King-Dye. The hope is that this amazing pair will be able to qualify for the WEG selection trials in 2010.