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UPDATE: Engle Still Targeting Selection Trials—Broken Hip or Not!

San Juan Capistrano, CA—April 27, 2004—“I am trying to work towards competing in the Trials if it is at all possible,” said 2000 Sydney Olympic veteran and eight-time American Grandprix Association (AGA) Rider of the Year Margie Goldstein Engle. “The doctors are not sure if this is possible, but they are helping me with an accelerated rehabilitation program, but cautioning me that bones only heal so fast, so there is a high risk of re-injury.”

Virtually every top show jumper in the United States has spent the early part of 2004 targeting the show jumping Selection Trials, scheduled for the weekends of May 14-16 and 20-23 at Del Mar and San Juan Capistrano, CA, the final weekend of which will also feature the Cargill International CSI**** and the $175,000 Cargill Grand Prix of the United States. Engle, with her Sydney mount Hidden Creek’s Perin, entered the year as one of the favorites to make the four-rider squad for Athens, but everything changed when she fractured her hip in a fall while competing at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, on Friday the 13th of February.

“It wouldn’t have been so bad if it had just been a straight break,” Engle said in describing her injury of a fractured hip where the neck connects to the shaft of the femur. “The problem is that the fracture was displaced, which the doctors say takes much longer to heal.”

Engle had surgery to put in a plate, rod and screws designed to help bring the bone back into its proper position. Doctors gave her a timetable of three to four months before she would be able to start riding, a timetable that would leave her to compete in the Trials.

“The doctors would prefer I wait until the middle of June to jump, but are working with me at an accelerated pace. They understand how important a chance of going to the Olympics is, but still want me to understand the risks I am taking. Dr. Pino, my surgeon, said that so far the recovery is going remarkably well with all the help of extensive physical therapy and that I was way ahead of what he had expected.”

This, of course, is something not surprising to anyone familiar with show jumping’s all-time leading winner. Engle has a history of bouncing back from injuries, a history that has seen her ride even the next day after such injuries as a broken wrist, broken ribs or a fall that led to more than 50 stitches on her face. Given that long history, Engle can’t imagine letting a broken hip keep her from a shot at a second consecutive Olympic Games.

“I feel Perin is one of the best horses in our country,” she said of her two-time Horse of the Year on whom she also won team Gold and individual Bronze Medals at last year’s Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. He also had the only clear for our country in the Nations Cup in the last Olympics and finished in the top 10 individually. “He is such a consistent jumper that I think he’d be a big help in our bid for the team Gold Medal. I can’t imagine letting my injury deny him the chance to be there.”

Each year, the Cargill International CSI**** features some of the world’s best show jumping horses and riders. Several of the world’s top Grand Prix riders are expected to be on hand this year to compete at the fourth annual Cargill International CSI****, which was the country’s first outdoor CSI (international individual show jumping competition). The 2004 event will take place May 20-23.

General admission tickets for the Cargill International CSI**** and the first three selection trials at Del Mar are available through Ticketmaster. VIP ticket packages for the Cargill International CSI**** are also available and include reserved ringside seating under the Hospitality Tent, a Friday reception, a Saturday luncheon and Sunday brunch, in addition to preferred parking. For general information, please visit


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