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Dressage and canapes in Gothenburg

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Lucky me – I’m at the Reem Acra FEI World Cup Final Dressage in Sweden.

It’s a very big day for international dressage. Really looking forward to the Grand Prix Freestyle this afternoon… 1 hour to go at time of writing.

There were some rather tense moments on Day 1 of the dressage. Patrik Kittel’s horse – Watermill Scandic H.B.C. took exception to the rather enormous flower displays round the arena that had controversially been added to the set up after the final main ring warm up. In the schedule, it says riders are allowed to show their horses the arena fully dressed before the competition starts.

Current Champion and Olympic Silver medallist Adelinde Cornelissen also had a ‘moment’ when Jerich Parzival decided he didn’t want to go forward. It probably cost her 1st place, but she still managed 4th with 75.410% and actually didn’t seem that bothered. I imagine the 3,250 euro prize helped.

I have a personal interest in Norwegian Lillann Jebsen and Pro-Set as he is the sire of my own horse. It was such a shame when Lillann made an error of course, she was so cross, but they finished 12th with 68.146%

On the show jumping side of things, Rolex made a rather enormous announcement yesterday – they’re introducing a Grand Slam for the sport with a whopping 1 million euro prize. The three shows involved are Aachen in Germany (where the prize fund for the Grand Prix is already 1 million euro), Spruce Meadows in Canada and Geneva, Switzerland. This is quite an incredible development for show jumping – even retired international rider Stephen Hadley said he’s tempted to put his boots back on.

The press conference was hosted by a very dashing fellow, bravo Rupert Bell… and the canapés were lovely.

More later…

Kate Justice