Industry Innovators: Innordic USA

By Jackie McFarland

Kompeet with Kenneth
After eight years with CWD, Kenneth Vinther has taken a leap of faith. The well-connected, experienced salesman and horseman started 2011 by launching a new distribution company, Innordic USA. No longer dealing in leather, Kenneth is now supplementing the horse world with products that are already taking Europe by storm. One of the revolutionary supplements is a natural energy product, Kompeet. Kenneth has already seen impressive results in a variety of horses in several disciplines since he recently introduced Kompeet here in the United States.

Knowing the proof is in the documented changes, he shared some of these success stories. With notable excitement in his voice, Kenneth further explained the reasons he chose this new route.

EqSol: So how did this career change come about?
 My good friend and old trainer Johnny Hansen has all of his horses on Kompeet and he put me in touch with the company. I’ve been talking with them since last summer and it evolved from there.

EqSol: What’s the product that changed your life and apparently can changes the lives of countless horses…
 The one product that inspired me is this new nutritional product for horses, Kompeet. The way it works is very interesting. It is an energy supplement that is derived from fat, not sugar. I’ll explain.

A horse’s digestive system can only physically breakdown so much fat, due to acids in the stomach. Horses are foraging animals, built to eat grass in a pasture all day. Due to this they have a naturally slow digestive system. Most injuries and stress in horses are due to lactic acid, lack of strength which all goes back to a lack of sufficient energy in their diet.

A European engineer developed a way to blend four types of digestive fat into a water-soluble vegetable fat. This provides a pure source of fat for both energy and weight gain. The key is due to the water solubility the horse will get 100% benefit. This is a huge benefit for high performance horses as well as hard to keep horses. This type of energy is called cold energy and it doesn’t have the highs and lows of energy derived from sugar.

EqSol: Don’t high-energy feeds provide this source of fat? Or what about other supplements?
 That’s just it – they don’t. It is not in any high-energy feeds. Yes the feeds have fat but it isn’t water-soluble. That is the simple but important key to how it works.

Kompeet can easily be combined with other supplements. It is 100% pure vegetable fat, derived to increase energy; it has no added vitamins & minerals.

There is no competing product available on the market that can do what Kompeet does for horses.

EqSol: You have testimonials. Tell us about these stories.
 Besides the great results from Europe, I’ve tried the product with several horses here. All different horses, different levels and different experience – all saw results in a month.

I tested it on a 17 y.o., 17h Holsteiner dressage horse. He required a ton of feed just to keep his energy up, especially when he was competing. Another test was with a warmblood mare competing in the 1.50m division. They had tried everything to keep weight and muscle on this mare without success. And the third was a young warmblood that also wouldn’t keep weight on and was low energy, lethargic.

From day one these three horses all had the highest amount recommended of 14 ounces per day. You can feed less but more than 14 ounces has no higher effect. After two to four weeks the results were phenomenal. ALL the horses improved. They look and feel great. The dressage horse is doing better than ever, plus his feed has been reduced by 1/3. The mare is not only more buff, with increased weight and muscle but she is less marish and more energetic about her job. And the young horse developed more muscles and his performance improved dramatically at the shows there after.

These results stem directly from the right amount of energy and balance in the muscle. Pure energy.

EqSol: And that is just on those few cases. Do you see more potential?
 The potential is incredible, from the retired horse that needs to keep weight on to the high-level performance horses in all disciplines. It acts fast. You can control the amount you feed. For example you can maintain and then during a competition you can bump it up. There are no side effects or negative aspects.

EqSol: How do you find out more and where can you purchase?
 It will be available through my company, Innordic USA; I am the only US distributor. I’m now working on having it more readily available through some exclusive retailers as well as through veterinarians. For example Kompeet is now available at Beval’s at WEF and Rolling Meadows in Thermal. I also had a booth at AAEP (American Association of Equine Practitioners). The response from the veterinarians was huge; a light went on they saw the potential right away. Innordic - Natural Horse Products

Other innovative products coming to the United States through Innordic USA include organic products for hooves, an Omega 3 Fish Oil as well as an organic treatment for riding arenas which eliminates the need of watering for up to 15 months. All products are scientifically based and engineered for the Equestrian world.

Thank you Kenneth for giving us the new supplement scoop. Congratulations on your business venture. Seems certain many will soon be seeking to Kompeet with Kenneth. 

Highlights From Winter Circuit East and West

From all reports, all is well at winter circuits both east and west. Horses are happy in Wellington and Thermal, and prominent names are appearing in both places. Both WEF and the HITS Desert Circuit have welcomed riders hailing from the north, south, east and west including but certainly not limited to Canada, South America, Mexico, Europe, Texas, New York and California. Families flew in and settled for the winter – the Bonds and Simpsons flew south to Florida, whereas the Beerbaums, Fellers and Charlie Jayne headed to the California desert.

Seemingly everywhere, Kenneth Vinther was spotted in Wellington and is now in Thermal promoting his new company. Yes Kenneth has flown the CWD coop and has spread his wings as a distributor of exciting new products from Europe. Now you can “Koompeet with Kenneth“.

We are pleased to report from here that several exciting projects are in the works, plus many of our clients jumped into the new year with marketing on their minds, so we are juggling but jazzed. Our team continues to expand. We’ve added a new Account Manager Selena Frederick who hit the ground running in Thermal. Thank you Erin Gilmore for the solid recommendation. Erin also flew south for the winter and is thoroughly enjoying Wellington as seen in her blog. She wrote a piece called “Use Your Head – Wear A Helmet” after attending the Helmet Symposium and interviewing Beezie Madden on our behalf.

Active with the North American Riders Group, our friend Will Simpson participated in the dynamic annual meeting. Proud to be a part of it by producing the NARG Top 25 booklet, we were also in attendance. Read “The Chronicles of NARG Continued” in this issue.

Wishes from Wellington continue as we feature the FTI Great Charity Challenge coming up next week. The EquestriSol family will fly south as well to not only witness this event but some top-notch hunter (and a bit of jumper) action. We know John French is switching coasts for a couple of weeks and hope to see him in the WEF winner’s circle.

Speaking of Wellington, Santana Stables is seeking an “A” level show jumping rider, with American citizenship and fluent in Portuguese, to join their team. To learn more, visit the Santana site and click News.

January came and went like a flash, and we are well into February. Read up, as come March we will be back in your Inbox with more. Selena, who also happens to be a professional photographer, will provide prose from the Desert and we will be enjoying the beaches and the showgrounds in the Sunshine state.

Peeking back into 2010, the Inside Indoors article in our fall issue failed to mention Whitney Downs and her fabulous Coffee Talk – they were Champions in the Small Jr. Hunters 15 & under, plus won Grand Hunter Champion at Capital Challenge. We may miss other shining stars and welcome emails telling us so.

On a final soulful note, occasionally we are reminded of why we tirelessly entrench ourselves in this world of equestrian sport. Certainly the excitement of competition, the plethora of interesting people, the cherished relationships all play a role. But where would any of us be without the horse? As our daughter is days away from her 4th birthday, we succumbed to the purchase of a giant pink unicorn. Tidbits of a recent NPR story on girls, horses and unicorns were both touching and amusing.

Equestrian Adventures

By Sydney Masters Durieux

Kenneth Vinther
CWD US Sales Support Manager Kenneth Vinther is a familiar face on the grounds of internationally acclaimed show jumping competitions. He can often be found discussing tack with top trainers, chatting about future goals with both young and elite riders, or making plans with show management. But the 39-year-old Danish immigrant can also be seen mounted in his own CWD saddle competing in the jumpers.

Kenneth began his career in the horse world in Europe when he was 14. Initially he excelled in vaulting, but later changed his focus to riding and training. Certified instructor and professional are on his resume.

“I never had my own horse before moving to America,” explained Kenneth, who now has Amateur status. “By chance, I got involved with CWD and I was the first sales rep here on the West Coast.” He and his wife, dressage rider Karen Ball, now call the private community of Coto de Caza in Southern California home base. But he travels extensively to introduce equestrian enthusiasts around the globe to CWD’s precision products.

Seoul in the SpringKenneth Vinther in Seoul Korea
In March, Kenneth was invited to compete as an individual at the Korean Racing Authority’s (KRA) annual CSI 2* show jumping event held at the Seoul Olympic Equestrian Park. “I have been doing business with the horse community there for some time now, and I received a personal invitation from the Korean Equestrian Federation (KEF).” He joined riders from Asia, Germany, Sweden, Australia, Norway, Japan, New Zealand, Thailand and the United States for three days of competition.

“You must have an international rider’s number to compete there, which I didn’t have at the time,” he admitted with a smile. “I had to call my old trainer Johnny Hansen, who is a judge back home. He went to the Danish Riding Association on my behalf to get me a number. The day I arrived in Seoul was the day it actually came through. It was a good thing, as they can disqualify you without one!”

On their first day, the visitors met at the stadium to draw straws and determine their mount for weekend. “Each of the Korean riders had to bring two horses; one for them to show, and the second for the guest competitor. Most were German bred and I rode a 10 year old warmblood named Centorio 25. He was a very nice, powerful, and scopey horse, but a little bit tricky,” he admitted. “We were allowed to flat for 20 minutes, and then jump six fences.”

A little nightlife Seoul-style followed. “We were invited out to experience the local bars and restaurants and went to a very traditional Korean place, where we sat on the floor for dinner. Then we headed out to a Karaoke bar, which is huge there.” Everyone participated in the entertainment, and Vinther belted out a tune by Elton John. “They love whiskey,” he laughed, “and they drink tons of it. It was fun and interesting to see the different cultures, meet new contacts and riders. Everybody was cool.”

Show jumpers in Seoul  The following morning the foreigners were picked up from the Ritz Carlton and transported to stadium for their first over fences test. “It was a speed class, essentially a warm up, with just one round. Each country had a team,” recalled Kenneth, “but I was the only representative of Denmark.” Thomas Holz of Germany won the 1.30m individual class, with Jack Hardin Towell, Jr. of the US taking second. Kenneth had one rail and was just out of the ribbons.

On the final last day there was a two-round class set at 1.40-1.45m. “The officials and course designer were all Korean. The courses were fair, big, and technical – but in a good way. It was televised later in the day, which was great as I was able to watch.” This time Jamie Kermond of Australia won the individual and Linn Widmark of Sweden placed second, with Vinther coming in tenth place.

Seoul Summarized
“Gaming is huge in Korea, but they really want to expand beyond racing, and are focusing on show jumping,” Kenneth explained as he watched the action that was happening on the grand prix field at the Blenheim Spring Classic II. “They have already established their breeding program for racing and are now doing the same thing with jumpers. They have a KRA show jumping team and are embracing the sport in a big way. They want to make the KRA Cup a CSI3* event next year.”CWD fans in Korea

When asked about the experience overall, he explained, “I feel that the Koreans are very serious, good riders. The sport is growing in popularity, with more than 300 riding clubs, and a horse show series. The event was run very well. The KRA sponsors their riding, training and breeding programs, and they are sending their riders to Germany, as well as to California for the summer shows.” And about Korea? “I stayed for a week, took a few tours, and explored the city of Seoul, which is huge with more than 10 million people.”

It seems through his myriad experiences in and out of the saddle, Kenneth Vinther certainly has an equestrian soul. Learning from his adventure, we now know to watch for talented riders coming our way from Seoul. One Korean rider that lives here in the US caught our eye last year, Michael Whang. Under the tutelage of Duncan McIntosh, this talented and driven equestrian is another one to watch.

Thank you Kenneth for your Seoul story.

Weekends Well Spent

By Jackie Freundlich McFarland

Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum Clinic
Each year as the holidays approach, competition is on the back burner and clinics abound. We cover two in this newsletter, but we know there were also well-attended George Morris clinics up and down the west coast. For those who wrapped up the year learning from some of the world’s best, we commend you.

As mentioned in this issue’s A Stable Story, El Campeon Farms is an ideal setting for equines and equestrians, which holds true for the Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum clinic hosted by Oak Grove Stud on November 20-22, 2009. Combine fabulous southern California weather, great footing, focused riders, devoted auditors, delicious food with Michaels-Beerbaum and the results are remarkable.

We spoke with several riders who participated at varying heights and observed Sunday’s session. Riding at the 1.20m level, Michael Whang excelled tremendously. Encouraged by his trainer Duncan McIntosh, this was Whang’s first clinic. Kenneth Vinther decided he and his young horse Cagney, who participated in the 1.30m level, couldn’t miss the chance to learn from one of the best riders in the world. Recent winner of the USHJA’s EAP National Training Session and top junior rider Ricky Neal also discussed the challenges he faced during the clinic that ultimately taught him more than the aspects that went smoothly.

Day 1: Friday Focuses on Flatwork
Michael Whang explains, “The theory of forward, back and sideways to explain the specifics of flatwork helped me feel how the horse reacts to the aids, how to become one with the horse.”

“She worked a lot on simplifying the flat work, so whether moving up or collecting, the horse reacts readily from the leg,” commented Kenneth Vinther.

Day 2: Saturday Solidifies Style
Riders maneuvered several gymnastic exercises from a single trot fence to trot in-canter out combinations to four oxers each with one stride in between. Vinther loves how these exercises teach the rider balance and rhythm, and the horse to think and learn from mistakes without the rider’s interference. With Meredith on the ground, it was a tremendous learning experience.

Day 3: Sunday Seals the Deal
The format on Sunday was a culmination of flatwork on Friday and gymnastics work on Saturday, where both horse and rider learned about preparing for what was to come on this final day. Everyone warmed up solo on the flat. Meredith set one jump in the arena for warm-up and instructed each rider to tell her how they wanted to warm up the horse, from type of jump to height to what approach and when they were ready to go. Sometimes the rider was asked about their choices, other times they were advised to alter their warm-up.

With Cagney, Vinther decided to use trot poles in front of the warm-up jump to achieve a lighter more balanced horse without pulling. Since the young jumper can get heavy, when a strong rebalancing was needed, it was encouraged as long as there was a softening. The results were nothing short of amazing; the horse is bursting with talent. He jumped around the 1.30m course beautifully. Vinther admits that he has the perfect training situation at home. His wife Karen is a dressage trainer, so when he is on the road for CWD the horse is well schooled on the flat.

During the three day event, Vinther learned by both on and off the horse and took home some valuable reminders. “I learned from riding in the clinic, but also from watching the other riders while listening. I was reminded to ‘listen’ to my horse, to not just go through the paces. I have been lazy about correcting his ‘playing around’, but Meredith reminded me to stay focused and be disciplined.”

Whang was pleased with the connection he established with his horse on the flat on the final day. “My warm up on Sunday directly correlated to what I learned on Friday. My horse reacted to it well, he was calm and in my hands, accepting every aid, including my seat.” However the butterflies in his stomach were fluttering at full force when he went to perform in front of his peers and clinician in the arena. The 1.20-1.25m course was higher than he had ever ridden on this horse. After a relatively smooth warm-up his ride began and his nerves were replaced with a keen sense of focus. After he finished a flawless round, Meredith simply said, “There is not much to say about that ride. Excellent. Good riding, good training.”

California-born, now German citizen, Michaels-Beerbaum is a solid example of focus, determination and keen competitiveness. She’s proven her methods are successful through her success aboard numerous mounts, most notably the super-talented Shutterfly. For those who participated and those who watched, it was not only a weekend well spent, but potentially the chance of a lifetime.