Tag Archives: Charlotte Dujardin

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro Are Back at World Number One

Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and Valegro competing in last month’s Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships at Herning (DEN) where the combination won three medals © Kit Houghton/FEI

Lausanne (SUI), 10 September 2013 – Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin and her 11-year-old Olympic partner Valegro have reclaimed the world number one spot in this month’s FEI World Dressage Rankings.

The London 2012 double gold medallists, who won three medals – individual gold in the Grand Prix Special and Freestyle along with team bronze in the Grand Prix – at the recent Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships in Herning (DEN), top the rankings with 2,915 points. They hold a comfortable 67-point lead over Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage winners and European team champions and double silver medallists 2013 Helen Langehanenberg (GER) and the 13-year-old stallion Damon Hill NRW.

Last month’s leaders Adelinde Cornelissen (NED) and Jerich Parzival are in third place with 2,818 points. The combination won team silver, individual Grand Prix Special and Freestyle bronze medals at Herning last month.

There are few other changes in the Top 10, with Edward Gal (NED) and Glock’s Undercover; Kristina Sprehe (GER) and Desperados FRH; Tinne Vilhelmsson Silfvén (SWE) and Don Auriello; and Isabell Werth (GER) and Don Johnson FRH in fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh place respectively.

The biggest move in the latest rankings is that of Dujardin and Valegro’s fellow European bronze-medal winning teammates Carl Hester and Uthopia who have gone from 91st up to 31st place thanks to their Grand Prix Freestyle victory and second place in the Grand Prix on home ground at CDIO3* Hickstead and to their good performances in Herning.

FEI World Dressage Rankings Top 10:

  1. Charlotte DUJARDIN (GBR), VALEGRO 2,915
  2. Helen LANGEHANENBERG (GER), DAMON HILL NRW 2,848
  3. Adelinde CORNELISSEN (NED), JERICH PARZIVAL 2,818
  4. Edward GAL (NED), GLOCK’S UNDERCOVER 2,608
  5. Kristina SPREHE (GER), DESPERADOS FRH 2,454
  6. Tinne VILHELMSSON SILFVÉN (SWE), DON AURIELLO 2,426
  7. Isabell WERTH (GER), DON JOHNSON FRH 2,341
  8. Anna KASPRZAK (DEN), DONNPERIGNON 2,267
  9. Patrick KITTEL (SWE), WATERMILL SCANDIC H.B.C. 2,261
  10. Valentina TRUPPA (ITA), FIXDESIGN EREMO DEL CASTEGNO 2,252

The complete FEI World Dressage Rankings are here.

FEI Media contacts:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
ruth.grundy@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 45

Malina Gueorguiev
Manager Media Relations
Email: malina.gueorguiev@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 133

Dujardin Makes It Individual Double Gold with Fabulous Freestyle Victory

(L to R): Freestyle silver medallist Helen Langehanenberg (GER), gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and bronze medallist Adelinde Cornelissen (NED). Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

Herning (DEN), 25 August 2013 – Olympic double gold medallists, Charlotte Dujardin and the wonderful gelding Valegro, produced another magical performance to win Freestyle gold at the Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships 2013 in Herning, Denmark today.  It has been quite a week for the 28-year-old rider who began by breaking the world record Grand Prix score to help the British to team bronze on Thursday, before coming out the following day to clinch the individual Grand Prix Special title.

The buildup to this afternoon’s Freestyle was an emotional one, and expectation was at an all-time high.  It certainly didn’t disappoint, with quality work from all 15 of the qualified riders and a breath-taking winning ride from Dujardin during which she and her wonderful horse held everyone under their spell.

Holding the Lead

Dujardin’s trainer and mentor, Carl Hester, was holding the lead before the final group took their turn.  His score of 81.696 with his London 2012 Olympic team gold medal winning ride, Uthopia, reflected a test that lacked some of its usual sparkle, but the horse’s amazing trot extensions were still very much in place as he overtook Denmark’s Anna Kasprzak and Donnperignon.

It wasn’t only Danish supporters who had a tear in their eye a little earlier when, during the first break, the horse that has brought so much success to Nathalie zu Sayn-Wittgenstein, the 16-year-old Digby, was officially retired.

This pair set the target as the first group of riders took their turn when posting a score of 79.554, and would eventually finish in ninth place.  Looking as fresh and well as ever, Digby got a standing ovation from the crowd who waved him and his rider out of the arena for the very last time.  But before they left, zu Sayn-Wittgenstein pointed out, “I’ll be back even though Digby won’t!”  And the rider’s mother, Princess Benedikte of Denmark who bred this wonderful horse, was as tearful as everyone else.

Final Five

The Netherlands’ Adelinde Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival were first to go of the final five, and the defending European Freestyle champion, and her horse whose life has been more than a little interesting this year, set a big new target when putting 86.393 on the board.  All Parzival’s trademark bounce and energy seems to be back following his fantastic recovery from treatment for a heart condition, and, earning 9.5 for piaffe amongst his many high scores, he ensured the rest would have to be on their toes.

Edward Gal’s Glock’s Undercover was much more relaxed today than he was in Friday’s Grand Prix Special, and this Dutch duo produced more of their seamless transitions and strong piaffe and passage which earned a mark of 9.1.  But their score of 84.911 left Cornelissen still out in front until Dujardin entered the arena.

The softness of Valegro’s slow and deliberate piaffe, the power of the trot extensions, the athletic quality of the lateral movements and the wonderful passage had everyone enthralled.  Dujardin coordinated every movement with the stirring musical score she used at last summer’s Olympic Games in London.  The precision with which she arrived on queue for each of the pirouettes that were executed to the sound of the ringing of London’s Big Ben was awe-inspiring.  Today’s performance was possibly just as spine-chilling as the one that earned them Freestyle Olympic gold 12 months ago. There was just one significant glitch.  “In the last pirouette I caught him with the spur and it made him jump.  Other than that it was brilliant!” as Dujardin said afterwards.

Germany’s Kristina Sprehe and Desperados FRH were second-last into the ring and posted 81.875 for an impressive test, but the last threat to Dujardin’s dominance lay with reigning Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage champions Helen Langehanenberg and Damon Hill from Germany.  Their performance wasn’t perfect and they lost their rhythm toward the very end, but there was some fine work shown for a mark of 87.286 which would be more than good enough for silver, ahead of Cornelissen in bronze.

Fantastic Ride

“I had a fantastic ride today.  A lot was down to the fact that Grandad (Dujardin’s friend and mentor Carl Hester) told me to give Valegro a day off yesterday because it would be good for him so that he would be fresh today – and he was right!  He (Valegro) felt really great when he came out today,” Dujardin said.

Langehanenberg was very happy to be on the podium, having missed out by the narrowest of margins at last summer’s Olympic Games. “In London I was so close to a medal, and here I have succeeded twice,” she said with a big smile. “I had a great feeling again today, and I’m proud of him (Damon Hill).  I made a slight mistake but it is as it is.  It has been a brilliant week and so full of fun!” she added.

Cornelissen said she was “extremely happy.  We came for the team, and to go home with two individual medals is just great!”  Her delight stems as much from the knowledge that her gelding is feeling happy and well again after his ill-heath earlier in the year. “I’m still building him (Jerich Parzival) up, and I have such a fantastic team around me – I owe these medals to them,” she insisted.

Dujardin was asked why she doesn’t wear a top hat like many of the other riders. “I wear a crash hat – I don’t wear a top hat because I had a really bad fall and fractured my skull.  I was knocked out for about ten minutes and I would never take the risk again.  I don’t feel safe in a top hat, and I don’t think it’s an issue that I don’t wear one,” she said.

She did have a top-hat on when coming into the ring for the prize-giving, however, because she borrowed the one that had been sported throughout the day by flamboyant and hugely popular ringmaster, Pedro Cebulka, whose colourful attire makes him something of a legend on the international equestrian circuit.  It was all in the way of fun, something that has permeated the top-class competition enjoyed in all three equestrian disciplines in Herning over the past week.

Talked about Test

The newly-crowned gold medallist talked about her test today. “I’m very, very happy; I didn’t want to risk too much and make a mistake. You don’t want to be frightening your horse; I felt he was with me all the way and that he enjoyed it and we danced our way through it.”  She said she had initially decided to do a new Freestyle for the European Championships but changed her mind about that.  “People at home were wondering why I wasn’t using the Olympic Games music.  I only ever did it three times and everyone loved it so much.  I didn’t want to use it again because I felt it belonged to London 2012, but everyone likes it, including the judges, and it is technically difficult, so I thought I’d do it again,” she explained.

Ground Jury member, Leif Tornblad, said that the progressive excellence of the sport of Dressage has created challenges not only for the competitors, but also for the judges. “Now the challenge is to know that you may see the best you can ever imagine!  It’s not easy for the judges, and we are as excited as the public and the riders! We don’t know the marks that the other judges give; it’s not so easy to be always in unison.  Maybe Charlotte didn’t break a record today but she broke my record – I’ve never given marks as high as that!” he pointed out.

Relief and Satisfaction

There was a sense of relief and satisfaction as this great week of Championship competition drew to a close, and there was a bit of silliness in the air as well.  British rider, Richard Davison, took the opportunity during this evening’s press conference to tease Adelinde Cornelissen about bursting into tears when asked about Jerich Parzival’s health scare following Friday’s Grand Prix Special.  “I have a question for Adelinde,” Davison said. “Can you talk us through how emotional it has been?” But the rider was ready for him, and told the press conference, “He has a bet that I’m going to cry again, but I’m not going to cry!” to which Davison replied, “Well then that’s just cost me ten euro so!”

Langehanenberg was happy too. “The most emotional moment for me was after the Grand Prix (team competition won by Germany) when I just rode in and everyone was clapping and crying – that was perfect and the most emotional moment – it was really special.”

Frank Kempermann, Chairman FEI Dressage Committee, put the ECCO FEI European Championships into perspective.  The entire event was like a piece of carefully-crafted theatre with plenty of drama alongside the best of good sport.  “On behalf of the FEI I’d like to thank the artists – the riders and the horses – and also a big thanks to the organiser and sponsors for giving us all a fantastic time in Denmark,” he said.

Result: Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Freestyle Championship – here.

Facts and Figures:

Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin became the first British rider to win European Freestyle gold when victorious on the final day of the Blue Hors European Dressage Championship 2013 today.

It has been a spectacular week for the 28-year-old who took double-gold at the London 2012 Olympic Games. This week she once again broke the world record in the Grand Prix to help earn team bronze for her country, before clinching individual gold in both Friday’s Grand Prix Special and today’s Freestyle.

A total of 15 riders lined out in today’s Freestyle in which Germany’s Helen Langehanenberg and Damon Hill NRW took silver ahead of The Netherlands’ Adelinde Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival in bronze medal position.

Digby, the 16-year-old gelding ridden to great success by Denmark’s Nathalie zu Sayn-Wittgenstein, was officially retired after competing for the very last time in today’s Freestyle at the Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships in Herning.

Quotes:

Helen Langehanenberg GER, Freestyle silver medallist: “It has been brilliant fun to be part of these Championships.”

Jens Trabjerg, Event President: “We had 61,500 visitors this week.”

Charlotte Dujardin, Freestyle gold medallist: “The Grand Prix felt amazing.  I can’t say I came here to do as well as I’ve done – I thought I’d try to get as many golds as I could but it has been such a fantastic week!”

British Chef de Mission, Will Connell MBE, talking about the achievements of British riders this week: “Following the successes of London (Olympic Games) was always going to be very challenging, but I think that Herning has demonstrated London was certainly not a flash in the pan. Perhaps one of the most pleasing aspects has been the success of those rider/horse combinations that were not in London.”

FEI YouTube: http://youtu.be/ebFqaMesPo8

For further information on the ECCO FEI European Championships 2013, go to website: http://european-herning.dk/GB.aspx.

FEI Online Press kits

Extensive information on the P.S.I. FEI European Jumping Championships, Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships and JYSK FEI European Para-Dressage Championships, can be found in the FEI’s Online Press Kit Zone: www.feipresskits.org. Each press kit includes an event preview, athlete biographies, competition timetable, Championships history and key contact details.

FEI TV

The P.S.I. FEI European Jumping Championships and Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships will be live on FEI TV, the FEI’s official online video platform, starting on 20 August at 16.45 local time – see the complete live schedule here: www.feitv.org/live. Key performances and interviews with medal winners will be available as video-on-demand from the JYSK FEI European Para-Dressage Championships.

By Louise Parkes

Media Contacts:

At Herning:

Britt Carlsen
Press Officer
bc@wiegaarden.dk
+45 96 570 580

At FEI:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
ruth.grundy@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 45

Grania Willis
Director Press Relations
Email: grania.willis@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 142

Grand Prix Special Gold for Dujardin on a Day of Drama and Emotion

(L to R): silver medallist Helen Langehanenberg (GER), gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and bronze medallist Adelinde Cornelissen (NED). Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

Herning (DEN), 23 August 2013 – There’s been a theatrical touch to just about every moment of the ECCO FEI European Championships 2013 in Herning, Denmark this week, but nothing could surpass the pure drama of today’s Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Grand Prix Special won by Olympic champions Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro from Great Britain.  The pressure was at boiling point, with all sorts of questions about which one of the top riders would reign supreme. But no-one could have expected the litany of errors that plagued all of the eventual medal-winners, and which left the spectators in a state of near-disbelief.

Germany’s Helen Langehanenberg and Damon Hill claimed silver, while defending champions Adelinde Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival took bronze for The Netherlands.  It was particularly emotional for the Dutch rider whose brave horse has battled back from ill health to take his place amongst the greats once again this summer. And despite all the drama it was a day of wonderful sport filled with good humour and great horsemanship.

Rapid-fire Test

The drama began in earnest with a mistake from Patrik Kittel who forgot his two-tempi changes during the rapid-fire Grand Prix Special test. The experienced Swede, who took Freestyle bronze at the last European Championships on home turf in Rotterdam, The Netherlands two years ago, had saddled up the gelding, Toy Story, at the last possible moment when his 2011 medal winning ride Watermill Scandic was slightly injured while warming-up at the Danish fixture last Monday.  And the 13-year-old gelding was giving an excellent account of himself today until things suddenly went awry.

Kittel said afterwards, “I had such a good feeling with Toy; everything was good, perhaps a bit tired but a good feeling.  When I heard the bell ring my mind flashed back to Aachen this summer where he slightly injured his lip and we were disqualified.  I got totally blank and thought, oh no, not here, not now, I nearly panicked!  But when I realised I had just ridden the wrong programme I went back on automatic, although the mistake probably cost me my Freestyle spot.”  As it happened, he was right, and he didn’t make the cut into Sunday’s Top-15 Freestyle, missing out by two places when finishing in 17th place.

He was followed by Germany’s Isabell Werth who also didn’t get the score she was hoping for. “I took too much risk before the transition into piaffe,” she explained after posting 71.890 with Don Johnson.  “It was just a misunderstanding.  Too bad but no tragedy.  He’s only 11 and did great things in there,” added the veteran who was a member of yesterday’s gold-medal-winning German team.  It was fellow-countrywoman, Kristina Sprehe, who raised the game to another level with a mark of 79.345 with the super-handsome stallion Desperados FRH.  And there was a bustle of excitement when London 2012 Olympic team gold medallist, Carl Hester from Great Britain, followed her into the ring with Uthopia.

A big score seemed to be on the agenda here after the wonderful opening trot extension that earned 9.2, but once again the horse lost concentration after struggling in piaffe and when 78.497 went up on the board this partnership’s medal hopes were dashed. “The standards are so high that you must take risks.  Uthopia was brave today and his extended trots were phenomenal.  I’m very happy,” said the man whose risk-taking so often pays off, but who had to settle for sixth place in the final analysis today.

A Little Surreal

It was when the final group of six riders got underway that things began to get a little surreal.  The battle was now expected to be played out between reigning Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage champion Helen Langehanenberg riding Damon Hill NRW for Germany, Olympic double-gold-medallist Charlotte Dujardin with Valegro for Great Britain, defending Grand Prix Special and Freestyle European champion Adelinde Cornelissen with Jerich Parzival for The Netherlands and her Dutch colleague Edward Gal who was the star of the 2009 European Championships fixture at Windsor in London with the super-stallion Totilas, but was today partnering the up-and-coming Glock’s Undercover.

Langehanenberg was second to go of the final group and was looking good until, towards the very end of the test when she should have been en route to A for her march up the centre line, she veered across the diagonal instead, only to be halted by the judge’s bell.  She punched the air in frustration before re-grouping and getting back on line. “That was the worst thing that could happen and I am really angry at myself about it,” she said in the immediate aftermath. It should not have happened, but I am only human.  On the other hand I am very proud of Dami who did a great job!”  He did indeed, because the pair still went into a strong lead with a score of 84.330.

Next in were Dujardin and Valegro whose record-breaking performance in yesterday’s Team competition has only further enhanced their already legendary status.  And they were producing their trademark fabulous trot extensions before the rider unwittingly began two-tempi changes where she should have started canter half-pass.  It was the spectators who alerted the judging team by their gasps as Ground Jury President, Isabel Judet, said afterwards.  The crowd had hardly recovered from the surprise of Langehanenberg’s mistake when Dujardin followed suit.

The rider looked stunned at first, but then quickly pulled herself together and still managed to nail more stunning piaffe before making her final halt.  There was an air of amazement and confusion before a score of 85.499 went up on the board to put her into the lead.

Took Their Turn

Denmark’s Nathalie zu Sayn-Wittgenstein and Digby posted 73.353 before Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival took their turn.  Perhaps in the light of the mistakes made by their main rivals the defending individual double-champions could pull something really special out of the bag.  But when the Dutch duo made precisely the same error as their British counterparts their score of 81.548 would only be good enough for bronze medal position.  The crowd by this stage was almost dumbstuck by the way the competition had unfolded.  Gal and Glock’s Undercover finished just outside a medal position when earning a mark of 79.479, but all the buzz was about the bizarre series of mistakes.

As Cornelissen pointed out, she made a similar error but still managed to win the 2011 title in Rotterdam. She joked this afternoon that when she saw what happened to the others “I thought, to be sporting, I would do the same!”

All three ladies managed to see the funny side of it.  Langehanenberg said, “I’ve made mistakes before – but not that one!” while Dujardin explained, “When I was coming down to the warm-up I met Patrick Kittel and I asked him how did it go, and he said ‘I went wrong!’ and I said ‘Oh no!’  Then I heard that Helen had gone wrong too, and I went ‘Oh no!’  I wasn’t thinking of that at all when I went into the arena, but coming into the corner I went into canter and I thought ‘Oh god!’ I looked across and I saw Andrew [Gardner, judge at B].  Then it was quite difficult to pull myself together; there was so much noise.  There was much more to do so I knew I had to get into it again, and that there was no room for error.  I knew I was in trouble with Carl [Hester], but Valegro was great.  It was a case of pat the horse, sack the rider!”

Her friend, trainer and mentor Carl Hester, was far from annoyed, however.  He said afterwards that her capacity to put such a big mistake behind her and then produce more fantastic work from Valegro made him very proud.

Delighted

Dujardin talked about what today’s success means to her and how delighted she is that Valegro is still available for her to ride. “After the Olympic Games it was very tough not knowing what was going to happen and I’m so very grateful to still have the horse; he’s like my best friend.  Two years ago I did my first European Championship and I got to the Individual, but I was a bit lost and not as confident as I am now.  To come back and get another gold is amazing,” she said.

The challenge presented by the Grand Prix Freestyle test certainly produced some dramatic moments today.  FEI Dressage Committee Chairman, Frank Kempermann, commented, “It was a good day for the sport,” but pointed out with a laugh that while the Olympic Grand Prix Special test was used up until last year, “It was the riders who requested to go back to the old Grand Prix Special test, so it’s not the Dressage Committee’s fault!”

While there was an air of amused jubilation at the post-competition press conference, there was also a very poignant moment when Adelinde Cornelissen was asked what it felt like to have another medal around her neck after the difficult summer she has endured due to her horse’s ill health.  Jerich Parzival underwent an operation to address arrhythmia in June, and his rider, who is deeply devoted to the 16-year-old gelding who has brought joy to so many people, attempted to reply before bursting into tears.  The worry and tension of the past few months spilled out, but so did her great affection for her horse.

It was a timely reminder of the depth of the partnerships built between great riders and their great horses.  And we will see more of both when the Freestyle brings the Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships 2013 to a close on Sunday afternoon.

Result: Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championship, Grand Prix Special – here.

Facts and Figures:

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro recorded Britain’s first-ever Grand Prix Special victory in the history of the FEI European Dressage Championships.

30 horse-and-rider partnerships started in today’s Grand Prix Special at the Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championship in Herning, Denmark.

13 nations were represented – Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Great Britain, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

The Grand Prix Special is a demanding test in a technical context, with a rapid-fire sequence of movements.

The Netherlands’ Adelinde Cornelissen won both the Grand Prix Special and Freestyle at the FEI European Dressage Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands in 2011.

The Ground Jury positions today were: At K, Francis Verbeek Van Rooij (NED); At E, Gustav Svalling (SWE); At H, Susie Hoevenaars (AUS); At C, Isabelle Judet (FRA) President; At M, Leif Tornblad (DEN); At B, Andrew Gardner (GBR); At F, Dietrich Plewa (GER).

The top-15 finishers in today’s Grand Prix Special have qualified for Sunday’s Blue Hors Freestyle which brings the ECCO FEI European Dressage Championships 2013 to a close.

Quotes:

Marcela Krinke-Susmelj (SUI): “I am very happy with my ride and for me personally it was very important to show the Danish spectators that my horse, which is from Denmark, can also compete very well with a Swiss rider.  He made me proud and I think he pleased the audience.”

Helen Langehanenberg (GER): “There were real highlights in his [Damon Hill’s] test.  Yesterday he was little fresher than today but that’s absolutely normal.  He gives his very, very best every day he competes.”

Kristina Sprehe (GER): “Today it was more fun to ride than yesterday, although the team is more important than the individual.  Today Desperados easily came back to me, and we did not have any uneven passage steps.”

Victoria Max-Theurer (AUT): “I am quite happy that I had no major faults.  Augustin did a great job but got a bit tense in there as the sound is quite clear.  I love the stadium though; the footing is great and the arena is beautiful.  I really liked riding in there.”

Lillan Jebsen (NOR): “My ride went well and I am certainly satisfied.  My horse spooked at a camera, but I quickly had him back at the job.  I must say that the organisers have succeeded very well with the set-up here.  It was amazing to ride in this arena.”

Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfven (SWE): “It felt good and I was able to get more from the warm-up into the arena.  I had mistakes in the one tempis again, but I was very pleased with him,” (her horse Don Auriello).

Isabell Werth (GER): “I took too much risk before the transition into piaffe. It was just a misunderstanding.  Too bad but no tragedy.  He’s only 11 and did great things in there.”

Nathalie Zu Sayn-Wittgenstein (DEN): “I am just a little disappointed in myself.  I should have had my horse a bit sharper on my aids, and we got mistakes in the one tempis, but Digby was a bit tired today.  He did such a good Grand Prix yesterday, and I feel he lacks a little energy today.”

Isabel Judet (FRA), President of the Ground Jury: “We had challenging and great sport. We all judge every weekend but we don’t judge these riders together and I’d like to thank them for great sport and great riding – thank you ladies.”

FEI Dressage Committee Chairman, Frank Kempermann: “Today there were 8,600 marks and just 11 changes which is 0.01 percent changes, so the judges did a marvellous job.”

For further information on the ECCO FEI European Championships 2013, go to website: http://european-herning.dk/GB.aspx.

FEI Online Press kits

Extensive information on the P.S.I. FEI European Jumping Championships, Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships and JYSK FEI European Para-Dressage Championships, can be found in the FEI’s Online Press Kit Zone: www.feipresskits.org. Each press kit includes an event preview, athlete biographies, competition timetable, Championships history and key contact details.

FEI TV

The P.S.I. FEI European Jumping Championships and Blue Hors FEI European Dressage Championships will be live on FEI TV, the FEI’s official online video platform, starting on 20 August at 16.45 local time – see the complete live schedule here: www.feitv.org/live. Key performances and interviews with medal winners will be available as video-on-demand from the JYSK FEI European Para-Dressage Championships.

By Louise Parkes

Media Contacts:

At Herning:

Britt Carlsen
Press Officer
bc@wiegaarden.dk
+45 96 570 580

At FEI:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
ruth.grundy@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 45

Grania Willis
Director Press Relations
Email: grania.willis@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 142

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro Are Back at World Number One

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro competing in the Grand Prix at CDIO 5* Rotterdam © Dirk Caremans/FEI.

Lausanne (SUI), 9 July 2013 – Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin and her 11-year-old Olympic partner Valegro have reclaimed the world number one spot in this month’s FEI World Dressage Rankings.

The London 2012 double gold medallists, who won both the Grand Prix and the Freestyle to Music at the recent CDIO 5* Rotterdam (NED), top the rankings with 2,912 points to give them a 13-point lead over Adelinde Cornelissen (NED) and the 16-year-old Jerich Parzival. The Dutch rider’s chestnut KWPN gelding was successfully treated for cardiac arrhythmia but has been out of action for the last few weeks.

Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage champions 2013 Helen Langehanenberg (GER) and Damon Hill NRW are in third place with 2,802 points.

There are few other changes in the Top 10, with Edward Gal (NED) and Glock’s Undercover up one place to fourth on 2,518 points and Germany’s Kristina Sprehe and Desperados in fifth on 2,517, just one point behind Gal.

The biggest mover in latest rankings is that of Austria’s Victoria Max-Theurer and August Old who have moved from 49th to 12th place thanks to their victory in both the Grand Prix and the Grand Prix Special on home ground at CDI3* Achleiten and their good performances in Aachen (GER).

The complete FEI World Dressage Rankings are here.

FEI Media contacts:

Grania Willis
Director Press Relations
Email: grania.willis@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 142

Malina Gueorguiev
Manager Media Relations
Email: malina.gueorguiev@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 133

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro Reclaim World Number One Status

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro are the leading combination of the FEI World Dressage Rankings (Kit Houghton/FEI)

Lausanne (SUI), 10 January 2013 – Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro, the first British combination to head the FEI World Dressage Rankings, have started the New Year in style by reclaiming the top spot.

Thanks to their masterful performance in the fifth leg of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage on home ground at London Olympia in December, and a world record score in the Grand Prix at the same event, the double Olympic gold medallist and her 10-year-old Dutch warmblood gelding are once again world number one with 2,943 points.

The Dutch combination of Adelinde Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival, the London 2012 Olympic silver medallists, are in second place just 37 points behind the leading duo on 2,907.

There are no other changes in the Top Ten, with Germany’s Helen Langehanenberg and Damon Hill NRW holding onto third (2,731) followed by another British duo – Laura Bechtolsheimer and Mistral Hojris – still in fourth place on 2,555 points.

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Olympic Champions Dujardin and Valegro Win Through in Tense Tussle at Olympia

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro (GBR) topped the fifth leg of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage Western European League series at Olympia in London. Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

Olympia, London (GBR), 18 December 2012 – On a night when nerves were truly tested by the close confines of the arena, the pure class of the 2012 Olympic individual and team gold medallists shone through as Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro topped the fifth leg of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage series at Olympia in London.  The Grand Hall at this prestigious venue is aptly named, but it is a very snug fit for the dressage ring at the Christmas fixture which attracts packed houses throughout a hectic week of great sport.

As Dujardin pointed out, “At the Olympics there were 24,000 spectators watching, but they were a long way away.  Here tonight it was very different – they were so close you could hear them breathing!” she said after claiming pole position with a score of 87.950.

Runner-up with a mark of 80.075 was double FEI World Cup Dressage champion Isabell Werth from Germany whose performance with the 11-year-old Don Johnson FRH left her well pleased. And it was Dujardin’s trainer and mentor, Carl Hester, who lined up third with a score of 79.900.  It was an emotional night for the Briton who shared the top step of the team podium at London 2012 with his 26-year-old pupil, because Hester was riding Utopia for the very last time.  “He’ll be sold in the new year,” the rider confirmed tonight.

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Charlotte Dujardin Becomes First Briton to Lead World Dressage Rankings

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro, the first British combination to top the FEI World Individual Dressage Rankings. (Kit Houghton/FEI)

Lausanne (SUI), 5 September 2012 – Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin and the 10-year-old Dutch warmblood gelding Valegro, double Olympic gold medallists at London 2012, have taken over as world number one in the FEI World Individual Dressage Rankings and are the first British combination ever to top the world rankings.

With 2,867 points, the combination have moved up from second place to claim the top spot, seven points clear of former world number one and London silver medallists Adelinde Cornelissen (NED) and Jerich Parzival, the Dutch pair that have led the rankings since July 2011.

The British combination moved up from fourth to second in the rankings list published just before the Olympic Dressage Grand Prix, the first team qualifier on 2 August, and it was their performances at the London Games that have boosted them to the top of the rankings.

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Dujardin Makes It Double Olympic Dressage Gold for Britain with Freestyle Victory

(L to R) - Silver medallist Adelinde Cornelissen (NED), gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin (GBR), and bronze medallist Laura Bechtolsheimer (GBR). Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

London (GBR), 9 August 2012 – Great Britain’s new shining star, Charlotte Dujardin, brought the crowd to their feet and the London 2012 equestrian events to the perfect conclusion when securing the individual Olympic Dressage title as winner of the Grand Prix Freestyle this afternoon at Greenwich Park.

Last of the 18 to line out today, the 26-year-old rider scored a magnificent 90.089 to pin The Netherlands’ Adelinde Cornelissen and Parzival into silver medal position, while the host nation had even more to celebrate when Laura Bechtolsheimer and Mistral Hojris claimed the bronze.

On Monday, Dujardin was part of the team that claimed Britain’s first-ever dressage medals in the history of the Games, and golden ones at that. The sport is in an exciting period of change and suddenly, it seems from almost out of nowhere, the British are right on top of the game.

As the FEI Eventing Chairman, Giuseppe della Chiesa, said this afternoon, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, “Two golds for Germany in eventing, and two golds for Britain in dressage – the world has turned upside down!”

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Olympic Gold Again for Great Britain as Dujardin Leads the Dressage Team to Glory

Great Britain's Charlotte Dujardin, Carl Hester and Laura Bechtolsheimer won dressage team gold today at Greenwich Park. Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

London (GBR), 7 August 2012 – You could hardly have scripted it better as Great Britain’s Dressage riders scooped Olympic team gold today. Yesterday the equestrian venue at Greenwich Park resounded to the wild roars of the home crowd as their jumpers topped the team podium for the first time in 60 years. Today it was the turn of Carl Hester, Laura Bechtolsheimer and Charlotte Dujardin to bring spectators to their feet in celebration of the first-ever British Dressage medals in the history of the Games – and, even better, they were also golden ones.

They began the day with a narrow lead over Germany, whose fantastic record includes team gold at the previous seven Olympic and, once in front, the London 2012 host nation riders just wouldn’t let go. And the star of the show was 26-year-old Dujardin who burst onto the Dressage scene just 18 months ago and who sealed today’s result with another fabulous ride on the 10-year-old Valegro.

Germany had to settle for silver while The Netherlands took bronze.

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British Maintain Team Lead as Dujardin and Valegro Shine in Olympic Dressage

Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro produced an Olympic record-breaking score in the Dressage Grand Prix to give Great Britain a marginal advantage over Germany going into the Grand Prix Special on Tuesday which will decide the fate of the Dressage team medals. Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

London (GBR), 3 August 2012 – A fabulous performance from Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro ensured that Britain maintains the lead in the team competition after the Dressage Grand Prix concluded at the London 2012 Olympic equestrian venue at Greenwich Park today. But the advantage is a very slender one, as Germany lies only just over half a point behind going into the medal-deciding Grand Prix Special next Tuesday.

The Dutch lie third, boosted by a brilliant test from double Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage champions Adelinde Cornelissen and Parzival who slotted into runner-up spot ahead of Germany’s Helen Langehanenberg (Damon Hill) and Kristina Sprehe (Desperados) who claimed third and fourth places individually. There was a time when tense situations really overwhelmed the Dutch rider’s big chestnut gelding, Parzival, but he has learned to cope much better in recent years. However Cornelissen had an un-nerving moment as she rode down to the arena. “He almost stopped and said ‘Aaaagh, what are all those people doing in there?’ But when we got going he said, ‘Oh, I know this stuff’, so it was fine,” the 33-year-old rider said with a laugh afterwards.

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