Aachen, Germany, August 26, 2005 -- The United States dressage team finished in third place behind a history-making Dutch team that beat Germany on August 25 to win the nations' team competition at the World Equestrian Festival.
The U.S. riders Steffen Peters of San Diego, Calif., on Floriano, and George Williams of Delaware, Ohio, on Rocher, had led the standings in the Grand Prix after the first of two days of competition. But, the powerful Dutch and German teams, which included Olympic individual and team gold medal horse and rider combinations, proved too strong on the second day.
Leslie Morse of Los Angeles, Calif., on Kingston and Guenter Seidel of Del Mar, Calif., on Aragon turned in performances that drew loud support from the large number of Americans in the 6,000-seat dressage stadium.
The highest score went to Anky van Grunsven of the Netherlands on her Olympic and World Cup champion gelding Keltec Salinero with a score of 75 percent, while Hubertus Schmidt of Germany placed second individually with a 74.370 percent on his Olympic team gold medal mare Wansuela Suerte.
This is the first time that the Netherlands squad has beaten Germany in team competition at a major international championship. For dressage, the World Equestrian Festival at Aachen is the premier team competition of the year.
Peters was the only American to score above 70 percent.
Morse's 14-year-old Dutch stallion, Kingston, posted a score of 69.5 percent while Seidel and Aragon scored 68.792 percent.