Cesar Parra Proves Staying Power with Multiple Back-to-Back Wins at Dressage at Devon and US Festival of Champions

Cesar Parra and Belle Ami were the highest scoring FEI pair at Dressage at Devon 2021, receiving a 73.575% in the Intermediaire I Freestyle. Photo by Conklin Photography

Edited Press Release

Dr. Cesar Parra’s bevy of wins at the prestigious Dressage at Devon show in September just after an equally impressive 2021 Festival of Champions demonstrates the staying power of his team at Performance Farm’s classical training system.

At the iconic Dressage at Devon, held Sept. 28-Oct.4th in Devon, Pennsylvania Performance Farms dominated the Young Horse divisions and the FEI Small Tour. Parra rode Fanta 4 earning scores of 83+% to capture wins in both of the FEI Dressage Tests for 6-Year-Old Horses. Fanta 4 (Finest x Fleur Noir) is a 2015 Hanoverian gelding owned by Parra and Gina Raful. 

Cesar Parra and Fanta 4 dominated the FEI 6 Year Old Division with a top score over 83%. Photo by Conklin Photography.

Performance Farms rising star, Katryna Evans rode Mollegardens Fashion (Florenz x Mollegardens x Kantarel) and earned impressive scores of 85.9% to clinch the blue ribbons in both FEI 5-Year-Old classes. Mollegardens Fashion is owned by Parra and his wife Marcel Ortiz-Parra.
“I couldn’t be prouder of our horses this year at Dressage at Devon,” Parra said. “This is always a very overwhelming atmosphere and it is always difficult, especially with the babies, but we had many great rides here this year! Bringing along young horses is one of the strategies that has helped keep Performance Farms in the forefront.  We start our young horses with an eye on the grand prix in the future but let them develop at their own pace.” 

Belle Ami, also ridden by Parra, won the CDI3* Small Tour this year at Devon. Not only did the 2009 Westphalian mare (Belissimo M x Reebook) owned by Parra and Brooke Centrella capture the overall win in the small tour, but they were the highest scoring FEI pair for the show with a 73.575% in the Intermediaire I Freestyle for the win, and a 70.981% in the Intermediaire I for another first place. 

“Belle is a tremendously talented horse that we’ve had the pleasure to train since she was a baby. She is an example of how our program works.  She is no stranger to success on the big stage as she has won multiple classes here at Devon, first as a young horse and then in the Amateur small tour with her owner Brooke Centrella. Now I am very fortunate to be able to compete with such an amazing horse as my partner. I was a little nervous because Belle and I did not have a lot of show preparation coming into Devon. However, she is such an easy-going horse and settled in very quickly. The first day was a little bit of a feel out day for us, but by the second day she was just ready to go and I knew we were going to have a great ride. I love her attitude.”

Cesar Parra and Belle Ami, winners at Dressage at Devon CDI 3*. Photo by Conklin Photography   

Parra’s impressive statistics contributed to his ongoing amazing record at Devon, as this was his 20th year to ride in Dressage at Devon. During those 20 years, he has enjoyed a victory pass 34 times for winning in every division from the young horses to the Grand Prix. Parra has been recognized as  the FEI High Score honors at Dressage at Devon six times. 

Prior to Devon, the Performance Farms team spent the last weekend in August racking up wins at the 2021 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions and Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse Dressage National Championships held at the Lamplight Equestrian Center in Wayne, Illinois.  Katryna Evans and Fontenay (Furst Jazz x Unknown), a 2017 Hanoverian owned by Parra and Gina Raful, claimed the 4-Year-Old Championship with a first place finish in the preliminary qualifier with an amazing 89.4% and a second place in the final test with an 86.4%. Evans and Mollegardens Fashion also finished in the top three in the 5-Year-Old Championships with a second place finish in the preliminary tests with an 88.8% and a fourth place finish in the final test with an 85.8%. Parra and Fanta 4 placed fifth in the 6-Year-Old Championship with a third place finish in the preliminary test and a fifth place in the final test. 

Parra credits the extra time, love and attention he gives to all the horses in his charge, as well as the classical training methods of Performance Farms to the staying power he and his riders have enjoyed throughout the years. Parra’s philosophies of discipline, courtesy, integrity, perseverance, self-control, sharing, and strength of character are a part of his daily life and these are the qualities he tries to pass on to the students and staff who make up his team. The classical training methods, based on the training scale of  rhythm, relaxation, contact, impulsion, straightness and collection, are always at the very foundation of Parra’s training philosophy. It is a time-tested program that has consistently produced champion horses and riders over the past two decades.

For more information, visit Performance Farm at www.piaffe-performance.com.