Category Archives: Eventing/H.T.

Eventing’s Major Medal Contenders Pass Final Horse Inspection Despite Moments of Tension

Sarah Ennis with Horseware Stellor Rebound (© Sportfoto.com).

The British team, overnight leaders after cross country, all sailed through the rain-soaked horse inspection, as did individual leaders, German Ingrid Klimke’s SAP Hale Bob OLD and Briton Rosalind Canter’s Allstar B.

But Irish hearts were in their mouths as both Horseware Stellor Rebound, the mount of third-placed Sarah Ennis, and teammate Sam Watson’s ride were asked to represent. Ultimately both Irish horses and the rest of the 70 horses presented were deemed fit to compete in the final Jumping phase.

The tension was palpable among the fans, owners, media, and other riders when Ennis brought Horseware Stellor Rebound back for re-inspection. Following a long consultation, however, Anne-Mette Binder (DEN), Jane Hamlin (USA), and Andrew Bennie (NZL) nodded their assent and, accompanied by loud cheering, the Irish medal hope was declared good to go.

Irish nerves had already been tested in the non-stop rain when Sam Watson’s 14-year-old Horseware Ardagh Highlight was sent to the holding box. To the relief of Team Ireland, who currently sits in silver medal position, the bay was swiftly given the green light when re-presented.

Three other horses were sent to the holding box. Dutch horses Rumour Has It N.O.P. (Merel Blom) and team mate Jane Z (Renske Kroeze) along with Magnum’s Martini (Brazil’s Nilson Moreira Da Silva) were all passed on re-inspection.

New Zealand’s four athletes lit up the soggy afternoon parade by opting to ignore the pelting rain and wear their Sunday best. For Sir Mark Todd a suit and smart black shoes were the only option.

“Unfortunately, I didn’t pack any wellies. I thought it was going to be fine,” laughed the two-time WEG team champion.

Britain’s quartet has a two-fence advantage over the Irish in the team competition, who have no breathing space over the French, with the Japanese a further two fences adrift in fourth. But it’s much tighter at the top in the individual standings, with less than a fence covering the top seven horses.

By Luke Norman

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Klimke in Control after Cross Country as Irish Eventers Come to Party

Ingrid Klimke and SAP Hale Bob OLD. (FEI/Christophe Taniere)

Germany’s Ingrid Klimke kept her nerve to grab the lead as the Irish and French lit up a dramatic, adrenaline-fuelled day of eventing at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG).

Klimke, second overnight, made it look easy as she and mount SAP Hale Bob OLD flew round the 5,700m course in 10:00 minutes, bang on the optimal time. Great Britain’s Rosalind Canter kept a relatively familiar look to the leaderboard as she and Allstar B improved from third to second, following a swift, flawless round. But the real drama came behind.

Ireland have never won a team medal at the WEG, but with two riders sitting in the top seven, that could all be about to change. Sarah Ennis (IRL) leads the way with a score of 26.30 points, enough to put her into the bronze medal position with just the show jumping to come.

“I can’t believe we are actually here,” Ennis said, with Ireland sitting second in the team standings. “He (Horseware Stellor Rebound) finds it very easy and he’s very fast. I think there might be a few drinks tonight.”

Two Frenchmen, Lieutenant Colonel Thibaut Vallette and Astier Nicolas, sit fourth and fifth behind Ennis, hauling the French up into third overall. Great Britain currently look favourites for team gold, thanks in no small part to another fine performance from Canter.

“It was quite a rollercoaster out there,” said the 32-year-old. “I knew I had to be fast and that’s out of my comfort zone.”

Fast she was, but Klimke, carrying a penalty score of just 23.30 over from the dressage stage, was untouchable on the fiery SAP Hale Bob OLD.

“He was just so full of himself today,” the European 2017 individual gold medallist said. “He was very fast in the beginning; he really wanted to run.”

Not so for teammate Julia Krajewski, runaway leader after the dressage. The devastated 29-year-old and her mount Chipmunk FRH ran into problems at the difficult fence 14 and faded to 47th overall.

As a result, Germany slipped back to sixth in the team standings, the final qualification place for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Disappointing days for the likes of Blyth Tait, and Boyd Martin saw New Zealand and the USA drop out of that all-important top six.

Due to the bad weather expected in Tryon, competition will conclude on Monday, something leader Klimke is certainly relaxed about.

“I think the horses will like it,” she said. “Another day of vacation.”

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By Luke Norman

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Second Time’s a Charm for Isabell Werth in Helgstrand Dressage FEI Grand Prix Special

Isabell Werth and Bella Rose. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Tryon, NC USA – September 14, 2018 – The score board in U.S. Trust Arena was ablaze when Germany’s multi-medalist Isabell Werth captivated hearts again, winning her second Gold medal at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 aboard Bella Rose. The duo bested US-stalwart Laura Graves and Verdades who captured Silver and defending champion Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and Mount St John Freestyle to Bronze.

Werth and fiery chestnut mare Bella Rose came out as the last rider of 30, presenting a flawless test. The pair scored 86.246%, including several 10s from the judges’ panel of seven.

“Three were out with more than 80 already so I knew we had to give it our best. When Bella started to trot I felt she wanted to go and do it and the half passes could not have been better,” said Werth.

Graves had put everything into her ride, presenting the 16-year-old Verdades with utmost precision in each step, despite gusts of wind picking up during her ride.

“It feels amazing. Two days in a row we really delivered for our country. The heat is a test of a horses’ character.”

Equally sensational was Charlotte Dujardin’s ride to Bronze, piloting her mare Mount St John Freestyle to 81.489%. The nine-year-young mare showed picture-perfect passage that is usually only acquired at a more advanced age.

“Her passage was incredible. We continue to work on it and will give Isabell a run for her money.”

Germany’s Sönke Rothenberger missed the podium by 0.44 points after mistakes in the one-tempi changes.

“I am disappointed. The horse would have deserved a medal because of its overall quality, but of course, we should not make mistakes.”

Germany Takes Pole Position for World Eventing Gold in Mars, Inc. Eventing Competition on Final Day of Dressage

Germany’s quest to retain the Team and Individual Eventing world titles gathered pace in record breaking fashion on another thrilling action-packed day at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Friday in Tryon Stadium.

German challenger Julia Krajewski not only held her overnight lead with Chipmunk FRH after the second day of dressage, but her closest challenger emerged as team-mate and reigning European champion Ingrid Klimke.

Klimke delivered a trademark display that oozed star quality on SAP Hale Bob OLD, posting a score 23.3 penalties to trail Krajewski by just 3.4 penalties heading into Saturday’s cross-country phase of the Mars, Inc. Eventing competition.

Great Britain’s Ros Canter and Allstar B complete the top three on 24.6, while Germany hold a convincing lead in the team competition, with their score of 73.4 breaking the previous best FEI World Equestrian Games™ record for a team dressage score set by Great Britain in Jerez, Spain in 2002.

They lead the British quartet by more than seven penalties, while the United States are close behind in third, followed by France, Australia and New Zealand.

Germany are chasing a third world team crown in the last four FEI World Equestrian Games™, and they are also well-placed for another Individual Gold medal following Sandra Auffarth’s 2014 success in France.

“I am very happy,” Klimke said. “He did such a wonderful test, he was so calm and concentrated. He was perfect. He was ready and waiting to get in there. He is 14 now and very mature. He did a beautiful job and for me it was a pleasure.”

Assessing the Cross-Country challenge, Krajewski said, “There are quite a few fences where you have to have your line right and be very concentrated.”

For Canter, her dressage performance maintained consistently impressive form on the 13-year-old stallion Allstar B, and she unquestionably poses a serious threat to German domination with her colleagues Piggy French, Tom McEwen and Gemma Tattersall.

“No matter what the atmosphere, he never changes,” Canter said. “I gave him a day off on Thursday because he worked so well the day before. He has just got that temperament where he puts 100% in for me every time, and it’s more the pressure for me that I want to do him proud and everyone else who has helped get me here.”

Although Krajewski has a clear lead, just 3.9 penalties separate the riders placed from second to ninth, and it is certain that the leaderboard will change considerably across the North Carolina terrain on Saturday.

That group features riders from six different countries, including French Olympian Thibaut Vallette, Sweden’s Sara Algotsson Ostholt, New Zealand’s world number two Tim Price and leading Irish challenger Sarah Ennis, who lies sixth.

World Eventing Stars Ready to Meet Cross-Country Challenge

Concentration and stamina look set to be the key requirements when Eventing athletes takes to the Cross-Country course on the White Oak track of TIEC during the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Saturday, September 15.

More than 80 horse and rider combinations will tackle the course designed by Captain Mark Phillips and it is likely to prove pivotal in terms of shaping the final leaderboard when Mars, Inc. Eventing Team and Individual medals are decided at Tryon International Equestrian Center. Mars, Inc. Eventing is now scheduled to conclude on Monday, September 17, due to inclement weather expected on Sunday, September 16.

New Zealand’s twice Olympic champion Sir Mark Todd is ready for a test that poses “plenty of questions.”

With a close and exciting dressage phase completed in Tryon Stadium on Friday, attention now switches to what promises to be a blockbusting day of world-class sport.

“It looks a good course,” said Great Britain’s Ros Canter, who holds third place individually after dressage.

“The challenge is going to be the humidity and the potential weather conditions. As last team member to go, I don’t know what weather will be thrown at us yet. I will try to stick to the plan and hope I can deliver for the team.”

World number two rider New Zealander Tim Price, recent winner of the Burghley Horse Trials in the United Kingdom, added: “The cross country is demanding. None of us know what the (completion) time is going to be like because with a tight time it heightens the difficulty everywhere else because everyone else is trying to go and do a good speed.”

“It will be what it will be. We are pretty gutsy, the Kiwis, and hopefully we will make a good plan together and go and execute,” he continued.

Price’s teammate Todd said, “Is it going to be hot? Is it going to be torrential rain? We have just got to make a plan and ride to the conditions. The course looks really good. There are some more straightforward fences, but some of the combinations ask plenty of questions.”

Team USA member William Coleman, meanwhile, described the testing closing hill on the course as akin to a metaphorical climb up Mount Everest.

“It’s pretty intense in the middle part,” Coleman said. “From the third to the seventh minute it is like an onslaught, and then you finish that and then climb Mount Everest up to the main arena. It will be a stamina test and I think the middle bit will be especially testing.”

British rider Tom McEwen cautioned, “I don’t think the course should be underestimated. It is possibly not the biggest course we’ve jumped, but saying that, it is technical, it is strong, and you have got to keep your wits about you. There are plenty of strong questions out there.”

For more information on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 and to view start lists and results, please visit www.Tryon2018.com.

Klimke Leads Germany to Record-Breaking Total

Ingrid Klimke with SAP Hale Bob OLD (FEI/Christophe Taniere)

Ingrid Klimke underlined Germany’s extraordinary dominance in dressage as she and mount SAP Hale Bob OLD leapt to within touching distance of compatriot Julia Krajewski at the top of the leaderboard as the first stage of the Mars eventing dressage came to an end at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG).

A beautifully controlled ride in front of a packed house secured the 2017 European individual and reigning Olympic team champion a score of 23.30. It places her second and gives Germany vice-like control of the battle for team gold.

“He was so relaxed, so calm, so concentrated that I could really ride him and was not sitting on a bomb or anything,” Klimke said of 14-year-old SAP Hale Bob OLD, before she attempted to explain just how Germany has mastered the art of dressage.

“You have to be really very precise in your training and do everything very accurately and repeat and repeat.” — Ingrid Klimke (Team Germany)

The nation’s combined score of 73.40 going into the cross country is the highest mark ever recorded at this stage of a FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG). Great Britain in second are a significant 7.40 points behind.

The Longines FEI European Championships 2017 team champions were buoyed by a great ride from 32-year-old Rosalind Canter who was so confident in her horse Allstar B that she “gave him the day off yesterday.

“It’s really just my job to make sure I get a mistake-free test from him because he is just so amazing, he never changes,” said Canter, who sits third with a score of 24.60.

France’s Lieutenant Colonel Thibaut Vallette led the rest in a charge as a host of big names gathered behind the top three. Just 2.2 points separates the military man in fourth and Great Britain’s Piggy French in 15th.

It is similarly tight in the team stakes with the USA, who boast three riders inside the top 18, sitting third, less than a point ahead of France in fourth. Ireland secured their best ever start to a WEG – their team total of 87.5 enough to place them seventh and firmly in the hunt for a priceless qualification place for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

All eyes now turn to the Captain Mark Phillips (GBR) designed cross country course. Rider of the day, Ingrid Klimke, neatly summed up the excitement and anticipation coursing through Tryon 2018.

“There are beautiful jumps out there,” Klimke said. “We can’t wait to get out.”

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By Luke Norman

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Remarkable Day of Sport at the FEI World Equestrian Games

Reining Reigns Supreme as the Johnson Controls Individual Reining Competition Finalists Are Determined

The Johnson Controls Reining Team Competition and first Individual Qualifier at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 offered an amazingly high level of competition. The athletic ability of the great reining horses competing was superbly highlighted by riders representing 20 National Federations. Team USA clinched the gold, led by the talented 18-year-old Cade McCutcheon who posted a 229-top score on Custom Made Gun. It was silver for Team Belgium and bronze for Germany. In the first Individual Qualifier, the top 15 placed horse-rider combinations officially claimed their spot in the finals which will be held on Saturday, September 15. Once the competition was over, an impressive 221 score, or higher, was needed to qualify.

Julia Krajewski Shines in the Sun as Eventers Wow the Crowds

German Eventer Julia Krajewski treated the sun-drenched spectators to one of the great dressage rides of all time as she finished a thrilling first day 7.2 points clear of the field.

The German and her mount Chipmunk FRH have been in scintillating form in the dressage arena this season and the duo lived up to their billing as one of the favourites for gold with a mark of 19.90 – the third best dressage score ever recorded at a WEG.

Home hero Boyd Martin fed off the packed stands to saunter his way to second place, with a score of 27.10, while Great Britain’s Piggy French lies third, just 0.70 points behind.

Watch live on FEI TV.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Germany Wins Team Gold in Helgstrand Dressage Competition

Isabell Werth and Bella Rose. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Tryon, NC USA – September 13, 2018 – It was anything less than routine when Germany took the Team Gold medal, adding number 12 to their collection in Helgstrand Dressage competition at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Thursday, September 13 in U.S. Trust Arena. Team veteran Isabell Werth’s tears ran freely after her stellar performance with Bella Rose, which brought the team score up to 242.950 points to secure their stance at the top of the podium.

Sönke Rothenberger (23) and Cosmo, both at their first WEG, had added 81.444 to the scores of Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and Dorothee Schneider. Those two had set the foundation for the Gold medal on Wednesday during the FEI Grand Prix competition.

Team USA finished second on 233.136 points, securing their second WEG Team Silver thanks to a top performance from Laura Graves and Verdades. The pair rode in last and turned in 81.630 points, the second best result of the competition.

“I was a bit under the weather today, but it is amazing what adrenaline can do. There was a lot of pressure on me today,” Graves said.

Great Britain secured bronze on 229.628 keeping the Swedish team at bay by just 0.172 points. Defending champion Charlotte Dujardin and veteran Carl Hester both had brought two very young horses and Dujardin’s nine-year-old Mount St John Freestyle seems set to fill in the big hoof prints left by golden horse Valegro, coming fifth individually in the mare’s sixth’s FEI Grand Prix appearance.

“For the last six or seven years I think that people thought that British Dressage was just Valegro and that was it.

“I think this has proven that we do still have depth in British Dressage, which was the main point of coming here,” Carl Hester said.

Dressage queen Isabell Werth, at her seventh WEG, changed between crying and beaming even long after the last halt in front of the judges had earned her the top score of 84.829.

“This was my answer to all those who did not understand how I could leave the world’s number one horse at home for this one. Most horse people here know how close I am to Bella and to bring her back after the long recovery after WEG 2014 is extra special. We always knew it could be a risk, but it is like that with every horse.”

German Eventing Star Julia Krajewski Sets Scorching Pace in Tryon Sunshine

Germany’s Julia Krajewski produced a staggering performance in the North Carolina sunshine as Mars, Inc. Eventing began at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 Tryon on Thursday.

Krajewski, a renowned superstar performer in the dressage phase with Chipmunk FRH, did not disappoint the electric atmosphere in Tryon Stadium that lapped up every moment of what at times looked like an exhibition performance.

The rider herself admitted she was close to tears, such was the horse’s brilliance in scoring just 19.9 penalties, as defending champions Germany made an immediate statement of intent in their quest to capture the Mars, Inc. Eventing crown.

There were some strong dressage displays on day one of the competition, with the likes of USA’s Boyd Martin, Great Britain’s Piggy French, Australian Christopher Burton and France’s Donatien Schuly all posting sub-30 scores.

But, the German was in a different league, and she said, “Maybe something really good was going to happen today and he felt awesome during the test.

“He has done good dressage tests before, but to produce it in such an atmosphere on this day, the people went crazy.

“It is not a personal best – he has had scores of 19 something before – but it is not just push a button and get 19. With a horse like him that can really do it, it is all about the detail.

“I am so proud. I had to stop the tears when I finished the test. It is an amazing feeling.”

Boyd Martin rose to the challenge impressively on home soil with Tsetserleg to post a 27.1 score and lie second overnight, just ahead of Piggy French and Quarrycrest Echo on 27.8.

“I am very happy with him,” he said of the 11-year-old gelding. “It is only the second time he has done that test. He’s a good boy and just gets in there and does it.”

French led the British challenge on day one as they bid to reclaim a title won impressively in Kentucky eight years ago.

“He is a really cool horse,” French said. “He’s still not the most experienced and there is still more to come from him, but he has got an amazing brain and so you can be quite brave. I always give it a good go.”

Eventing icons Blyth Tait and Andrew Hoy, meanwhile, showed they had lost none of their world-class quality by holding top 10 placings overnight after New Zealander Tait – twice an Eventing World Champion – and Australian Hoy, a three-time Olympic Gold medalist, shone on Dassett Courage and Vassily de Lassos, respectively.

“I was thrilled to bits with him, to be honest,” Tait said. “My team mates told me to be brave, but when you are going out first for the team you want to post a solid score, and he did that.”

And Hoy added, “He (Vassily de Lassos) could not have done one step better. He is not the finished product, he is a long way from it, but his test was a personal best. I jokingly said on Wednesday night that I was going to ride for a sub-30 score!”

Final Qualifying Places Filled in Race for Individual Johnson Controls Reining Medals

The full picture is now complete for the Johnson Controls Reining Individual Final at FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 Tryon.

Thursday’s second Individual Qualifier saw six remaining places to be filled, joining the other athletes who had progressed from the first qualifier.

It was Austria’s Martin Muhlstatter, riding Blo Gun, that took the top spot with a score of 223 points and was followed by Italy’s Pierluigi Chioldo and Gun at the Gate, with French challenger Axel Pesek also progressing on Uncle Sparky.

“She’s an amazing mare,” said Pierluigi, of his horse. “She was in the pasture, but she started being ridden again for WEG. She’s ten and she’s great.”

The three other spots were taken by two more Italian riders – Mirko Midili on Arc Sparkle Magnetic and Mirjam Stillo with Ruff Spook – plus Uruguay’s Brigido Gabriel Diano Riccetto, riding Magnum Starlights.

For more information on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 and to view start lists and results, please visit www.Tryon2018.com.

McCutcheon Steals the Show as United States Retains Reining Team Title

Cade McCutcheon and Custom Made Gun. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Tryon, NC USA – September 12, 2018 – The United States underlined their domination of Johnson Controls Reining competition by taking Team Gold at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Wednesday, September 12. The American team, led by the brilliant 18-year-old Cade McCutcheon on his grandfather’s horse, Custom Made Gun, claimed a comprehensive victory from Belgium in second and third-placed Germany. It was Team USA’s third successive FEI World Equestrian Games™ Gold medal triumph as they claimed the Johnson Controls Reining crown on a team score of 681 points.

Belgium, meanwhile, completed a hat trick of silver medals, while Germany’s bronze was a Reining first for them at WEG.

For Cade, who was joined in the team by Casey Deary, Daniel L Huss and Jordan Larson, it continued the family’s remarkable connection to WEG success, given that his father won Individual Gold in 2010 and his mother Mandy claimed silver four years ago.

“I was real nervous, but all the guys really helped me and that made a huge difference,” Cade said. “My grandfather owns my horse and he’s trained it as well. He is a pretty good owner to work for.”

And Deary added, “Cade did an amazing job. He showed all that he had and we are all extremely proud of the job he did.”

Reflecting on another second-placed finish, Belgium’s Bernard Fonck said, “I think everybody did everything that they could do with their horses and although it was a strong competition, I think Belgium was also pretty strong.”

With the crowd adding to a memorable atmosphere by getting fully involved in the action, there was also plenty for Germany to celebrate as they completed the podium places.

“This is the fifth WEG I have been a competitor at,” said Grischa Ludwig. “All the other competitions we’ve always been fourth and fifth, we’ve been beaten so many times by a half point and one point and now we’ve beaten the others (Austria) by a half point, which makes this feel even sweeter.”

“I did not think that it takes five FEI World Equestrian Games to get a medal! But, in the end, we really deserve it. This team really deserved it. We’ve been consistent. We had no low score and we were really fighting for the medal.”

Endurance Competition Canceled

Competition for the discipline of Endurance at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 Tryon was cancelled on Wednesday.

Equestrian sport’s governing body, Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), said in a statement that the decision was made “due to a potentially dangerously high combination of heat and humidity, and the conditions out on the trail following heavy rain this afternoon.”

“The decision to cancel, which is in accordance with FEI General Regulations, Article 109.12 was unanimous between the President of the Ground Jury, Technical Delegate and President of the Veterinary Commission, and the Organizing Committee.”

Earlier in the day, the event was reduced from its original 100-mile (160 kilometers) distance to 74 miles (120 kilometers) – and from five course loops to four – after it was announced that some teams had been “unfortunately misdirected” at the 6:30 am EST start.

The competition was stopped at the first Vet Gate inspection and each horse underwent a vet check before the race could restart. No substitution of horses was allowed.

A restart took place 45 minutes after the last horse was inspected and a statement released on behalf of the FEI read: “As there is no possibility to reschedule the ride tomorrow, the President of the Ground Jury, the President of the Veterinary Commission, Foreign Veterinary Delegate and the Organizing Committee agreed that this was the only pragmatic solution.”

The FEI said the cancellation decision “was also in line with the FEI Code of Conduct for the Welfare of the Horse, which states ‘extreme weather – competitions must not take place in extreme weather conditions that may compromise welfare or safety of the horse’.”

President of the Veterinary Commission, Thomas Timmons, said: “This was a difficult decision to make, but it was done with horse and athlete welfare in mind as the conditions this afternoon after the rain resulted in extremely high levels of humidity and combined with rising heat, it was deemed unsafe to continue the ride.”

British scientist Dr. David Marlin, who has been working on heat and humidity studies for the FEI for more than 20 years, provided the Ground Jury with data from the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT) index which showed a reading of 31. Anything over 25 is monitored very closely, and the officials agreed unanimously that 31 presented an unacceptable risk to horse welfare for the sport of Endurance.

The decision was backed by Netherlands Chef d’Equipe Pieter Wiersinga, who said: “The race was stopped, and I was asked as the Chef d’Equipe if I was okay with the decision.

“I spoke to my veterinary (team) and asked them what they thought. They said that in terms of it [race] continuing that for horse welfare it might be a problem and then I told them I was okay with that. It was the right decision. For horse welfare, yes, always,” he concluded.

In an update, meanwhile, on events in the morning, the FEI said: “Following this morning’s false start, the FEI has tasked the independent Equestrian Community Integrity Unit (ECIU), which is onsite here at Tryon, to do a full investigation into the circumstances that resulted in some horse/athlete combinations being misdirected.

“The investigation will include interviews with the officials, volunteers, Organizing Committee and all other relevant personnel to provide a full picture of what happened.

“The findings will be presented to the FEI Bureau and the conclusions will then be made.”

Germany Marking the Territory for Team Gold in Helgstrand Dressage

Team Germany is reaching out for the next medal in their collection by building up a strong lead in the Helgstrand Dressage discipline at FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018. After two riders out on the first day of competition at Tryon International Equestrian Center, the current champions sit on 76.677%, aiming to complete their medal dozen. Jessica von Bredow-Werndl leads the individual ranking and Dorothee Schneider currently sits in third place with a 75.062%.

Sweden came out as the day’s surprise when veteran Tinne Vilhelmson Silfvén and Juliette Ramel both turned in top performances for ranking their team second on 75.248%. Ramel squeezed in between the favorites on silver position individually, presenting her gelding Buriel K.H. in a much improved way. “Most of that is my trainer’s doing. Patrik Kittel gives me a lot of confidence and he believes in us. That makes me stronger,” Ramel explained.

Adrienne Lyle and Steffen Peters brought the U.S. team to third position. Lyle’s score of 74.581 % has her and stallion Salvino sit fourth individually. “I was really pleased with him, especially considering we warmed up in a downpour and then it’s blazing hot the next second. Fitness is a big factor – he’s a big dark horse and I’ve done my best to get him fit, and I’m glad that I did, because it took every ounce of fitness today,” Lyle beamed.

It was rain and shine at the opening of the Helgstrand Dressage competition, not only because of changing weather. Isabel Cool from Belgium had to retire when her stallion Aranco V quit following her aids, leaving her team without a scratch result.

But, for Australian Alexis Hellyer, day one of the competition already felt like an unexpectedly happy end. The first-timer at WEG had to present her horse Bluefields Floreno for re-inspection only in the morning of the competition and was relieved to find that the stallion was considered fit to compete. “His infection in the foot got better at the last minute. If I am called into the team ever again, I hope it is a little smoother,” she said, placing 23rd in Wednesday’s ranking.

Will the Price Be Right for New Zealand Eventing Couple?

Husband and wife dream team Tim and Jonelle Price will turn their attention to possible world domination of Eventing at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG).

The New Zealand riders have enjoyed a stellar season, with Jonelle claiming her first Badminton Horse Trials title in May before Tim landed the United Kingdom’s other major four-star event – the Burghley Horse Trials – in early September.

Now they are part of a New Zealand team that also features double Olympic champion Mark Todd and twice World individual gold medalist Blyth Tait, as they chase a third WEG crown in the Mars, Inc. Eventing.

“It is obviously a different situation here than Burghley,” Tim Price said. “But it was only a couple of weeks ago of being out there with a bit of pressure, and I will keep reminding myself of Burghley.

“But this is very much a team effort, and it is not going to be about one single individual performance.”

Lining up alongside them, though, are a host of teams and riders with serious gold medal aspirations in both the team and individual competitions.

Defending world champions Germany might be without the genial reigning Olympic champion Michael Jung, but it says everything about their remarkable strength that the team still features current world champion Sandra Auffarth and 2017 European Individual Gold medal winner Ingrid Klimke, who was part of German World Equestrian Games-winning teams in 2006 and 2014.

“I am really happy to be here with my horse,” Klimke said. “We are ready for the next adventure. We have a wonderful venue and I am very proud to be here and be a part of it all.”

Great Britain, world title winners in 1994 and 2010, might have seen a major selection surprise with current world number one Oliver Townend not making their team, but few can doubt claims to a podium finish, given the presence of multiple major championship medalist Tina Cook, world number three Ros Canter and 2011 Olympic Test event winner Piggy French.

And the quality is further emphasized by France fielding two members of their Rio 2016 gold medal-winning team in Thibaut Vallette and Astier Nicolas, the United States being led by Rio individual Bronze medalist Phillip Dutton and Australia featuring Andrew Hoy, a three-time Olympic team gold medal winner.

Considerable interest, too, will surround a Japanese team led by the highly experienced and reigning Asian Games champion Yoshiaki Oiwa two years out from the Tokyo Olympics.

A total of 83 combinations from 23 countries were presented at Wednesday’s first horse inspection in front of judges Anne-Mette Binder (Denmark), Jane Hamlin (USA) and Andrew Bennie (New Zealand), with all being accepted.

Belgium’s Joris Vanspringel with Imperial van de Holtakkers was held, but then passed on re-inspection, along with the Netherlands’ Merel Blom and Rumour Has It N.O.P, but they also passed after being held.

For more information on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 and to view start lists and results, please visit www.Tryon2018.com.

Japan Impresses with Three-Time Gold in Jakarta

Malaysia’s Qabil Ambak Dato’ Mahamad Fathil with Rosenstolz. (FEI/Yong Teck Lim)

All-gold in Eventing along with victory in Team Dressage and silver medal spot in Team Jumping ensured Japan was the winning-most nation in the equestrian events of the 18th Asian Games 2018 in Jakarta – Palembang, Indonesia. Held every four years in the middle of the Olympic cycle, the Asiads, as the Games are also known, is the biggest sporting event in the world with a massive 12,000 athletes taking part. Equestrian sport was introduced at the 9th Games in New Delhi (IND) in 1982, and competitions are conducted under FEI Rules.

Dressage

Jacqueline Siu (35) was the show-stealer in Dressage when securing Hong Kong’s first-ever equestrian medal at an Asian Games while also realising a dream of her own. The British-based rider narrowly missed the individual podium when finishing fourth twice before. However, this time around, partnering the 13-year-old JC Fuerst on Tour which was acquired by the Hong Kong Jockey Club from young German star Anna Abbalen, she climbed all the way to the coveted top step with victory in the Freestyle ahead of Malaysia’s Mohd Qabil Ambak Dato’ Mahamad Fathil (Rosenstolz) in silver and Korea’s Hyeok Kim (Degas K) in bronze.

Qabil Ambak topped the scoreboard in the Prix St Georges which decided the Team medals, but it was the consistency of the Japanese foursome that included Rio Olympians Masanao Takahashi (Fabriano) and Akane Kuroki (Toots) along with Shunsuke Terui (Alias Max) and Kazuki Sado (Djuice) that decided the destination of the 2018 Dressage team title. A second-place finish individually for 23-year-old Hyeok Kim helped Korea to silver, while Thailand’s bronze medal result was bolstered by a good performance from 24-year old Pakjira Thongpakdi (Hispania).

Eventing

The Japanese really got into their stride when taking both team and individual gold in Eventing. They enjoyed a convincing 38.9 margin of victory over India in the team competition in which Thailand claimed the bronze. And to put the icing on the Japanese cake, Yoshiaki Oiwa (42) pinned India’s Fouaad Mirza and China’s Alex Hua Tian into silver and bronze on the individual medal podium.

Yoshi, as Oiwa is best known, is a three-time Olympian with many successes during his long career. And when he shared the spotlight in the medal ceremony with team-mates Takayuki Yumira (37), Kenta Hiranaga (30) and Ryuzo Kitajima (32) he wasn’t taking all the credit.

“As a competitor, you do what you can – the others could have won gold without any help from me!” — Yoshiaki Oiwa (Japan)

It was a much closer affair on the individual leaderboard, however, when, riding Bart L JRA, his gold-medal-winning margin was a relatively modest 3.7 penalty points as he completed on 22.7 while India’s silver medallist Mirza was not far behind on his final tally of 26.40 with Seigneur Medicott. The last individual medal awarded to a rider from India went to Raghubir Singh in 1982, so there were big celebrations in the Team India camp with this result after a long 36-year wait.

Bronze medallist, Hua Tian, said these Asian Games were his “first steps on the road to the Tokyo Olympics,” and that’s a road that many of those competing in Jakarta are also hoping to follow over the next year and more.

Jumping

Japan had to settle for silver in Jumping when a world-class group of athletes from The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia dominated. However, Abdullah Al Sharbatly (Carrera), Khaled Al Eid (Kayenna of de Rocky Mounten), Khaled Al Mobty (Desert Storm II), and Ramzy Alduhami (Ted) only edged out the Japanese by fewer than two points at the end of a tight competition in which Qatar lined up in bronze, almost eight points further behind.

The Saudi side were super-experienced, Al Sharbatly (35) claimed individual silver at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Kentucky (USA) in 2010 and team bronze at the London 2012 Olympic Games, Al Eid (49) took individual bronze at the Olympic Games in Sydney 2000, and four-time Olympian Al Duhami (46) was standing on an Asian Games podium for the third time in his career. A total of 17 teams started, and it was a member of the fourth-placed Kuwaiti side, Ali Alkhorafi (28), who claimed the individual title.

Riding the 11-year-old mare, Cheril, he produced one of just two double-clear performances on the final day, the other posted by UAE’s Sheika Latifa Al Maktoum (Cobolt 8) who eventually lined up in seventh spot. Qatar’s Sheikh Ali Al Thani (35), who finished sixth individually at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, stood on the second step of the individual podium while Saudi Arabia’s Alduhami claimed the bronze.

Full results here.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Strzegom Autumn Show Is Coming

Photo: Mariusz Chmieliński/Strzegom Horse Trials.

Strzegom, Poland, 21.08.2018: Strzegom is preparing itself for next international competitions in eventing. Strzegom Autumn Show will take place in less than a month from now.

Strzegom Autumn Show joins classes for young horses (CI-short 1* YH) with international competitions at 1 & 2 * level (CIC1*, CCI1* CIC2*) and national classes LL, L, P & 1* (CNC LL – 85cm, CNC L-100cm and CNC P-105 cm). SAS will take place from 14th till 16th September this year.

Entries for event are open now.

Contact:
www.strzegomhorsetrials.pl
press@strzegomhorsetrials.pl

“Generation Z” Athletes Aiming to Shine at FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon 2018

Photo: Liz Gregg/FEI.

Lausanne (SUI), 17 August 2018 — Over 100 “Generation Z” athletes – born between the mid-1990s and early 2000s – have been named on the nominated entry list for next month’s FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, the pinnacle of equestrian sport, in North Carolina (USA).

Amongst these athletes are three 10-year-old vaulters who, alongside their fellow “Gen Zs” from 27 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, North and South America and the Middle East, are bidding to represent their nation at the FEI World Equestrian Games™.

A total of 71 countries are included in the nominated entries, a massive increase on the 58 that contested the medals at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Kentucky 2010 when the multi-discipline event was first held outside Europe.

The full nominated entries (listed by discipline) for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, from which the final entries will be selected next month, is here: https://inside.fei.org/fei/fei-weg/2018.

The next and final stages in the Games entry process are the deadlines for definite entries: 3 September for the first week’s competition in Dressage, Eventing, Endurance and Reining, and 10 September for the second week’s events in Driving, Para-Dressage, Jumping and Vaulting.

With an anticipated 800 athletes and over 820 horses from six of the world’s seven continents scheduled to attend, the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 will be one of the biggest sporting events on US soil this year, and will be held at the Tryon International Equestrian Center, set against the stunning backdrop of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Year of youth

Young equestrian athletes are really taking centre stage in 2018. Just one month after the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, 30 nations will send equestrians aged between 15-18 years to the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games held from 6 to 18 October 2018.

#BeOne

Equestrian fans, athletes and teams from across the globe are coming together to celebrate the sport as one and as part of the FEI campaign for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 – #BeOne.

To buy tickets for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, go to https://tryon2018.com/tickets/event-tickets and for more information on the Games, visit www.Tryon2018.com and www.fei.org/events/fei-world-equestrian-games-tryon.

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46