For the annual meeting of the International Dressage Trainers Club (IDTC) at Gestut Vorwerk in Cappeln, Germany, organizers Linda Keenan and David Hunt invited more than 100 international trainers and judges.
Hosted by Sissy Max-Theurer at the renowned German stallion station on 9 - 10 October 2018, the IDTC annual meeting gave its attendees the ability to experience fascinating presentations and demonstrations.
This year's IDTC annual meeting seems to have taken over the Global Dressage Forum initiative with expert presentations, debates and demonstrations. The IDTC meeting, however, is not open to the public. The last edition of the Global Dressage Forum took place in Hagen, Germany, in October 2016. A mock GDF was held at the CDIO Aachen in 2018 but scheduled at an unfortunate time and with only a few stakeholders attending on invitation.
Hinnemann, Murray, Tonjes Deliver on Day One
Johann Hinnemann and the licensing commissioners Heike Kemmer (Hanover) and Marian Dorresteijn (KWPN) illustrated the development of sport horse breeding in the last 20 years with six different horses, of all ages, ridden by Stefanie Wolf and Annika Rühl.
The presentation by FEI veterinarian Dr. Rachel Murray about current research results about bits and bridles and their effects on the health and well-being of the horses in all divisions of the equine sport, caused a lively discussion.
Jan Tönjes, editor-in-chief of the German equestrian magazine St.Georg, discussed topics on the role of the media to improve the image of equestrian sport as well as the relationship between riders and journalists. Tönjes clearly refuted claims from a top level Grand Prix rider that the equestrian press deliberately aims to present a negative image of the sport. The journalist also explained that a clear differentiation has to be made between print and online equestrian press, as well as social media bloggers and influencers.
Isabell Werth Enthuses on Day Two
On the second day of the seminar German Pony team trainer Conny Endres demonstrated how important the basic work is for all classes of dressage. She was assisted bytwo of her students, Antonia Busch-Kuffner and Shona Benner.
The seasoned 5* judge Katrina Wüst introduced the newly developed system of “paperless judging” and gave a short review of the World Equestrian Games in Tyron/USA.
The highlight of this event was provided by Isabell Werth. Just recently awarded with two World Championship gold medals she now demonstrated the role of a trainer with her impressing training principles. Eight different horses, owned by Max-Theurer, were presented to the audience. Every presentation was customized to the individual needs and stages of training of the respective rider-horse pair.
With the 3-year old stallion Fürst Schwarzenberg, who presented himself very calm and trusting under young horse specialist Heinrich Richter, Isabell Werth showed the audience how important a good early training is for high quality young horses is. Riders Ivonne Kläne and Melanie Tewes were able to take some valuable tips and tricks home for their further work and were happy about the progress of their four-legged partners. The Bundeschampionate finalist Caracciola MT was introduced to lateral movements, while the winner of the sport test, Duracao, was able to present flying changes reliably. The World Young Horse Championship finalist Valparaiso made its public debut under Victoria Max-Theurer. She presented how a young horse can be introduced to the highest dressage movements without stress. The 7-year-old shone in his first attempts of piaffe and passage and was able to show confident tempi changes and pirouettes under the instructions of Isabell Werth.
In their closing words David Hunt and Linda Keenan thanked the Max-Theurer family for their hospitality. The speakers and guests praised the team’s organization. “Vorwerk stud provided the perfect setting, we felt very comfortable here," said Hunt and Keenan.
The host wished for more in-depth conversations between trainers, riders, judges and veterinarians in her closing speech as well as “always for the well-being of our beloved horses and our wonderful sport. With this in mind we need to become one big family.”
Text by Tanja Becker, edited by Eurodressage
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