For those who may not know what Piaffe Performance does, Piaffe Performance is an organization that specializes in selecting, training, showing, and facilitating the sales of top horses for riders at every level. They are also an official partner and sponsor of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, in which they present the Piaffe Performance Adult Amateur Achievement Award throughout the show series to recognize adult amateur riders for their hard work and accomplishments in the sport of dressage.
This year, during the Adequan Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, Florida, Piaffe commended the Danish dressage rider Signe Kirk Kristiansen with the Adult Amateur Achievement Award. The award was given out by Dr. Cesar Parra, international renowned Colombian Olympian whose achievements include the 2011 Pan American Games and the 2014 World Cup Final. The award was given to Kristiansen after she represented her home country of Denmark in the CDIO 3* Nations Cup and the entire 2016 show season.
Even though Kristiansen competes with top of the line riders, she has always stated that she doesn’t think about being an Adult Amateur; she participates in the sport because she enjoys it. Her professional background is in veterinary nursing and has owned horses since the early age of six.
Currently, she owns Kirk Arabians with her husband in Denmark; a breed she says she’s been a big fan of since she was a teenager. She actually travelled to Wellington for the Adequan Global Dressage Festival with three competition horses – her beloved 14-year-old Hanoverian gelding named Roberto and two of her nine-year-old purebred Arabians. But the Adult Amateur Achievement Award was given for her performance with Roberto in the CDI Prix St. Georges in the Nations Cup competition.
This was the team’s first CDI class and second time around competing at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. Three other riders represented Denmark next to her in the Nations Cup: Mikala Gundersen, Rikke Poulsen, and Lars Petersen. Additionally, Kristiansen was the only Adult Amateur rider competing in the CDI Prix St. Georges.
Aside from her show efforts with Roberto, Piaffe Performance also commended Kristiansen for developing her own horses. She admitted that she has trained her Arabians since there were 3 years old and that while it takes a long time to develop horses, she loves it. In her opinion, training her own horses provides more control. She said she’s tried working with educated horses, but has not had a lot of success.
Kristiansen seems to be an excellent dressage rider with plenty of knowledge when it comes to breeding and training horses. Perhaps her love for the sport will soon turn professional.