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.
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.
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.
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!”
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.
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.
Wellington, FL (January 27, 2012) – American Steffen Peters took a step toward defending his 2011 World Dressage Masters Palm Beach title by winning the WDM Palm Beach Nürnberger Grand Prix test with a record-shattering score of 81.383%. Not only is that a personal best result in a CDI Grand Prix for Peters and Akiko Yamazaki’s 14 year old KWPN gelding, it is also the highest score ever attained in a WDM Palm Beach Grand Prix.
“I started to have the feeling I got from Ravel tonight in the last couple of weeks,” said Peters after his decisive victory over the international field of 16 competitors. “I had this feeling at a show two weeks ago in California, but I had to risk it a bit more here. Ravel feels even stronger than last year and more supple. It was a blast to ride.”
BRITISH TAKE THE LEAD IN TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP AS DUJARDIN SHINES by Louise Parkes
Rotterdam (NED), 17 August 2011 – Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and Valegro created a great buzz of excitement with a delightful late-morning test at the FEI European Dressage Championships 2011 in Rotterdam, The Netherlands today that put the British on course for team gold for the first time in the 25-year history of the event.
A score of 78.830 from the 26-year-old who has been working as stable-rider for team-mate Carl Hester for the last four years, has cemented the British position. And it is now up to Dujardin’s boss, Hester riding the exciting Uthopia, and to Laura Bechtolsheimer with Mistral Hojris, to capitalise on the advantage provided by their considerably less-experienced colleague whose score, along with that of veteran Emile Faurie’s mark of 70.426 with Elmegardens Marquis, brought the British tally to 149.256.
Germany lies second as the action resumes in the morning, but they are heading the third-placed defending champions from The Netherlands by only just over a single point, so the battle for silver and bronze promises to be a close-fought affair.
HELD THE LEAD Second into the arena, it was Helen Langehanenberg (GER) and Damon Hill NRW who held the lead after the first tranche of riders completed. But there was a tension about the work produced by the German duo who were awarded a score of 71.079. Meanwhile Faurie’s calm, controlled ride on the big bay gelding Elmegardens Marquis included some lovely piaffe, but few could have expected that his compatriot Dujardin would produce a personal-best performance on her debut at championship level to place the British in a position of such strength.