For Immediate Release
Contact: Mette Larsen
Metlar – Neue Schule Bits
Neue Schule Best Hands Award Presented to Juan Matute Jr. at the Gold Coast Fall Fling
Wellington, FL (November 13, 2014) — “Dressage is a combination of multiple soft aids. Your hands are a big factor that plays into the presentation of the horse,” explains international dressage rider Juan Matute Jr. Matute’s deep understanding of how to effectively communicate with his equine partners is impressive, especially considering that he is barely seventeen years old. At the Gold Coast Fall Fling, presented by the Gold Coast Dressage Association on November 8-9, 2014, Matute easily dominated competition with his skillful riding. Innovative bit manufacturer Neue Schule (pronounced noy-uh shoo-luh) awarded Matute with the Neue Schule Best Hands Award for his effective use of hand aids.
As Neue Schule representatives watched the competitors at the Global Dressage Stadium in Wellington, Florida during the Gold Coast Fall Fling, young Matute stood out to them. He was chosen to receive the Neue Schule Best Hands Award, which is given to competitors in Florida’s winter show circuit who have excellent, soft hands. Neue Schule knows the importance of having great contact between the rider’s hands and the horse’s bit, and helps make this contact possible by fashioning incredibly comfortable and effective bits. “The better designed the bit is, the easier it is for the rider and the horse. Neue Schule bits are designed to help alleviate any issues so that the horse and rider can get back to focusing on their ride or their training,” explains Mette Larsen, founder and president of Neue Schule’s North American distributer Metlar Premium Performance Saddlery.
With effective hands like Matute’s and a brilliantly designed bit like Neue Schule’s, a winning horse and rider team is formed. Neue Schule presented Matute with a pair of high-quality reins— the link between hands and bit— for his accomplishment. “I’m very happy that I got this award,” Matute beams. Besides the Best Hands Award, the dressage rider also won several classes at the Fall Fling. He was happy with the wins as he transitions from recent European competition to the Wellington winter competitive season. “We just got back from Aachen in September, so we’ve been here for a couple months now. Getting used to the weather again, especially the Florida heat!” Matute smiles. “We’re just preparing— this show is a little bit of practice before the big season.”
If this “practice” is any indicator of what is to come, Matute will be one to watch this winter season. His weekend accomplishments included winning the FEI Prix St. George in the JR/YR division with an outstanding score of 75.789 percent on his father’s bay Hanoverian gelding Quantico Ymas (Fighting Fit x Hauptstutbuch). “Quantico’s goal is to do Small Tour. He’s only eight, so he’s young. I’m focused on just getting him in the ring and getting experience,” comments Matute.
Matute also took first place in the FEI Grand Prix in the JR/YR division. He rode Don Diego Ymas, an eleven-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Juan Matute Sr., to a score of 72.400 percent— nearly a twenty-point lead over the second-place rider. “Don Diego is my flagship,” says Matute. “Don Diego has stepped up to the open Grand Prix, so our goal is to do well in the open Grand Prix and do well in international competitions.” Matute continued his winning weekend on yet another horse, Dhannie Ymas. Matute and the seven-year-old Hanoverian gelding, owned by Cristina Danguillecourt, earned a score of 73.947 percent to reach first place in the FEI Young Rider Team Test.
Neue Schule was impressed with Matute’s performances at the Gold Coast Fall Fling, and was pleased to recognize his talent by awarding him with the Neue Schule Best Hands Award. For more information about Neue Schule and Metlar Premium Performance Saddlery, visit www.NeueSchuleBitsUS.com or call 631-252-5574.
Photo: Juan Matute Jr. is awarded the Neue Schule Best Hands Award by April Leonard. (Photo courtesy of JRPR—no photo credit necessary)