Sights from the FEI World Cup

To the victor goes the spoils! Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and TSF Dalera BB are awarded the coveted champion cooler after defending their Grand Prix Freestyle championship title

Omaha, Nebraska was the host city for the 2023 FEI World Cup Finals. From awesome competition, to interesting daily demonstrations, and much more, go behind-the-scenes with us all over the showgrounds!

Photos by Chelsey Burris and Amber Wiseman

Around the Convention Center

To pay homage to the horse’s regional tradition and cultural impact, the FEI World Cup Finals Omaha 2023 infused tributes to Native American heritage into the event’s integrated theme. Here, Native Americans from the Lakota tribe talk to a group of children on their field-trip
The USDF booth where dressage enthusiasts from across the country stopped by to stock up on the latest merch
Among the items up for bid in The Dressage Foundation’s silent auction was this framed masterpiece featuring horseshoes worn by all 4 of the 2021 Silver Medal winning US Olympic Dressage Team horses: Salvino, Suppenkasper, Sanceo, & Don John.
Preparing the venue – a crew adding the World Cup branding to the outside of the CHI Health Center the day before the show
A Great American Insurance Group/USDF Regional Dressage Champion, rocking their SmartPak-brand jacket, watches one of the demonstrations at World Cup
Simat Whipp hosted a wonderful demo about American Saddlebreds, showcasing her dressage mount! We caught up with her afterward for a quick interview.
Debbie McDonald signing autographs at The Dressage Foundation booth
Showing off her style! A fan displays her World Cup-themed manicure
So many educational opportunities! One booth had this cutaway, showing the blood vessels within a horse’s hoof
Steffen Peters and Dinja van Liere drawing the order of go for dressage at the FEI World Cup
Becca’s Barrel Horses put on an adrenaline inducing barrel racing demonstration!
Luke Skywalker, the tallest horse in Nebraska, prepares to race Killer the mini horse, a champion driving horse
The demo arena played host to a number of different disciplines – including this bridleless jumping demonstration!
USDF Executive Board members stopped by the USDF booth to visit the staff members and check out the latest merchandise from the USDF store. From left to right: USDF Vice President Kevin Reinig, USDF Region 1 Director Bettina Longaker, USDF Senior Marketing & Sales Coordinator Amber Wiseman, USDF Technical Council At-Large Director Sue McKeown, USDF Treasurer Lorraine Musselman, USDF Senior Marketing Coordinator Chelsey Burris, USDF Activities Council At-Large Director Sue Mandas, USDF Region 2 Director Debby Savage, USDF Secretary Debra Reinhardt, and USDF Region 7 Director Carol Tice
One-eyed wonder horse! Swedish jumpers Wilma Hellström and Cicci BJN get ready in the warm up arena
Horses of many different breeds and a variety of disciplines showed off for the crowd at the demonstration arena with daily events
2023 marked the first year that the equestrian sport of vaulting was a part of the World Cup. Note: USDF strongly recommends all riders wear protective headgear when mounted.
Along with dressage and the newly introduced vaulting competition, the other sport on display at World Cup was jumping
Treats for a job well done! A jumper receives a congratulatory carrot after a great round which put them into first place
Killer the mini horse teaches the crowd about in-hand jumping, a sport where he is a world champion
After showing off for the crowd, Killer the mini horse visits the USDF booth
Some of the members of the show staff and many of the scribes at the 2023 FEI World Cup Dressage Finals pictured with the beautiful trophy on Grand Prix Freestyle night. Among them are USDF Group Member Organization (GMO) Committee Chair Cindi Wylie, USDF Region 4 Director Anne Sushko, USDF Region 6 Director Noah Rattner, and USDF Region 5 Director Heather Petersen.

Schooling – Dressage Athletes Making Last Minute Preparations

All smiles! USA’s Anna Buffini was beaming aboard her Hanoverian mare FRH Davinia la Douce (aka Diva) as she put in her final preparations.
Suppling exercises were a common theme during schooling for all of the dressage athletes
USA’s Anna Buffini takes a photo with Debbie McDonald aboard FRH Davinia la Douce
USDF was proud to be a sponsor of the show! Our logo is shown here, while 3-time Adequan®/USDF Grand Prix Horse of the Year Suppenkasper and Steffen Peters of the USA school in the warm up arena
USA’s Steffen Peters, aboard Suppenkasper, and Germany’s Isabell Werth, aboard DSP Quantaz, shared the same time slot in the arena during Dressage Familiarization day. They went on to finish 4th and 3rd in the Grand Prix Freestyle, respectively.
Suppenkasper, affectionately known as Mopsie, strikes a pose for our cameras
The warm up arena at FEI events is usually behind closed doors, but at this event, it was smack dab in the middle of the action with trade fair booths surrounding it!
With all the final preparations in, there is only one thing left to do – dance! Let the competition begin!

And The Main Event – The Competition!

Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and 16-year-old Trakehner mare TSF Dalera BB of Germany – winners of the 2023 FEI World Cup Finals with an amazing score of 90.482%!!
USA’s Steffen Peters celebrates with his dance partner, Suppenkasper, after their famous “Rave Horse” freestyle. The pair narrowly missed the podium, landing in 4th place.
The “Rave Horse” in action – Steffen Peters and Suppenkasper strutting their stuff for USA
USA USA! Steffen Peters and Suppenkasper get some love from the crowd after their ride.
That feeling when you know you nailed it! Germany’s Isabell Werth goes by a lively crowd, many of them on their feet after her fantastic freestyle with her partner DSP Quantaz.
USA’s Alice Tarjan had the lone American-bred in the dressage competition. The pair finished a respectable 9th in the Grand Prix Freestyle
Alice Tarjan and Serenade MF dance in front of the trophy at the World Cup
Anna Buffini was the youngest rider at the 2023 World Cup competition. Aboard FRH Davinia la Douce (aka Diva), she finished in 6th place in the Grand Prix Freestyle.
How could you not smile after a great ride like that? Anna Buffini, of the USA, waves to the crowd aboard Diva
Fun fact: Anna Buffini, of the USA, sang some of the vocals on her freestyle track!
Germany’s Jessica von Bredow-Werndl was all smiles after a wonderful ride with TSF Dalera BB. It earned them an astounding 90.482%, bringing the title back home for the second consecutive year. Girl power!
Wow! It’s not very often you get to see a ride like that! Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and TSF Dalera BB light up the score boards with their freestyle. Did you know Jessica just gave birth to her daughter 8 months ago? What an athlete to return to top form so quickly!
The champ is back! Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and TSF Dalera BB, escorted by groom Anna Liebing, successfully defend their title in the FEI World Cup!
Love for the horse! Sweden’s Johanna Due Boje gives her dance partner, Mazy Klovenhoj, a big hug
Sealed with a kiss! Netherlands’ Thamar Zweistra gives Hexagon’s Ich Weiss a kiss on the neck after a freestyle that earned them 5th place honors
Nanna Skodborg Merrald, from Denmark, locked up second place with a 87.146% aboard Blue Hors Zepter
Celebration time! USA’s Steffen Peters and Suppenkasper head down the tunnel to do a lap in front of the awaiting crowd after finishing in 4th place.
On the podium – Germany’s Jessica von Bredow-Werndl (center) is crowned champion for a second consecutive year with super mare TSF Dalera BB, with an amazing score of 90.482%!! Denmark’s Nanna Skodborg Merrald (right) and Blue Hors Zepter took home second place honors with a 87.146%, and Germany’s Isabell Werth and DSP Quantaz were third with 85.761%.
Thank you Omaha! Steffen Peters from the USA waves to the crowd as he and Suppenkasper exit the arena after their freestyle
Thank you Omaha for a fantastic week!
That’s a wrap on another great edition of the World Cup!


  1. […] Omaha, Nebraska was the host city for the 2023 FEI World Cup Finals. The competition was exciting, from getting to see the horses and riders up close during schooling and familiarization, to the exciting Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle championships. However, there was much more to World Cup than the competition itself. Each day, interesting demonstrations and exhibitions were held in the demo arena, showcasing horses of a variety of breeds and disciplines. There was also a bustling and busy trade fair, filled with unique items. Go behind-the-scenes with us all over the showgrounds, from the competition ring to the demonstration ring and everywhere in between, in this photo gallery! […]

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