Anky van Grunsven to Continue Competition Career Until London 2012
In an interview with Horses of the Dutch, triple Olympic gold medallist Anky van Grunsven announced that her competition career will most likely continue until the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Van Grunsven believes that Painted Black has developed in such a positive way that he can vie for a spot on the Dutch Olympic team for the 2012 Games in London. "To my feeling, he's going better all the time," said Van Grunsven.
Anky had previously stated that the 2010 World Equestrian Games could be the final competition in her career. "Only if I have a horse of a high enough level, I'll continue for two more years." And Anky thinks Painted Black got what it takes.
Van Grunsven has faced more competition in her career than ever before. At the 2009 European Championships she was "only" able to grab an individual bronze medal ending her year-long golden streak which started at the Olympics in 2000. Furthermore, Anky is not certain that she'll compete at the 2010 World Cup Finals as only the three highest ranked Dutchmen are allowed to go. She currently has Gal, Schellekens-Bartels and Jeannette Haazen ahead of her in the provisional World Cup ranking.
Anky has planned on competing Painted Black at the World Cup qualifier in Gothenburg. If she's able to qualify for the Finals, the Dutch diva will get the opportunity to choose which mount she'll ride. "I want to show at the Finals, but if I don't make it, it won't be a problem to me."
During the outdoor season, Van Grunsven will determine with which horse she'll do the WEG selection trials with. Most likely it will be Salinero. "The WEG will be his final big show. By that time, Salinero will be 16 and then it'll be enough. I won't stretch his competition career for the European Championships in 2011. London will just be too late for Salinero," Anky admitted.