In late August, the 3 Million Dollar Rider blazed through hoots and hollers in the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games to land himself a spot on the podium.Italian-born Andrea Fappani, who once earned the title of the youngest NRHA 3 Million Dollar Rider, won team gold and individual silver in this year’s Games, completing the sweep of the Adequan U.S. Reining Squad: Shawn Flarida claimed the gold medal, Fappani earned silver medal honors and Mandy McCutcheon reeled in the bronze medal.
A proud advocate of Finish Line® horse products, Fappani was energized after the ride.
“I just love that crowd out there,” he told the USEF Network. “To have everybody behind me, I just kept pushing and pushing, it was really good. [The horse] felt great the last couple days riding him and I was just so excited to be there. It’s the first time for me at the WEG and I wanted to top it off with a good performance and it went great.”
Performing an impressive pattern, Fappani riding Silver Spurs Equine’s Custom Cash Advance earned a score of 229. He showcased his fast big circles and slow small circles, and was rewarded with high marks from the judging panel.
Fappani put on an astounding performance that left the judges with a lasting impression. Even his competitor gave him high praise.
“A great friend of mine and a great horseman, Andrea just lit the house on fire and thank god my horse was up for the challenge,” gold-medal winner Flarida told USEF Network.
Philosophy in the ring
The Italian-born rider has a long history of participating in horse competitions. He started reining horses at 9 years old and would later fulfill his dream of becoming one of the all-time leaders in reining worldwide.
Now his horse training philosophy has become famous. As horse trainers know, breaking in a horse can be a rather drawn-out process. Fappani believes that similar to humans, horses’ ages play a big role in how they communicate to their riders. Young horses, with a fresh mind, can tell riders if they are doing a good job or not. He says there are no shortcuts to training a horse if you want the horse to be well-rounded and obedient in the end. Getting a horse to listen to your every movement is how to reach the next level of equine sportsmanship.
Through all-star riding and training, Fappani continues to make a name for himself.
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