What's Happening: January 2017 - Part 1

Tue, 01/10/2017 - 10:06
Pether Markne
Photo © Astrid Appels
What's Happening in the Dressage World?

Swedish Grand Prix riders Pether Markne and Per Sandgaard have sold their yard Arphus Gard in Sweden and will be moving to Skane, Sweden, which is closer to Sandgaard's home country Denmark. Arphus Gard has been sold  to a couple who have been doing equestrian sport at an amateur level, but who aim to make the yard a professionally run facility. Markne and Sandgaard will move out of the property on 1 June 2017, Tidningen Ridsport reported.

The prestigious 4* and 5* CDI dressage tour at the Es Fangar estates in Mallorca will not take place in 2017. The organisers of the Balearen Tour, the Eisenmann family, announced on Facebook that a clash of dates with a CDI in Portugal lies at the basis of their cancellation of the 2017 edition. "Our requested date in October 2017 clashes with the date Portugal entered to the FEI calendar," said the organizer. "Portugal entered in time before us and they filed a protest against our request. Finally Portugal got the o.k. for the date and we had to withdraw. Unfortunately we have no alternative date for our 5* Balearen Tour in 2017. We are disappointed, but we have to accept the FEI rules. No Balearen Tour in 2017. We are working on a super 5* Horseshow for you in 2018."

The New Year started badly for the Westfalian Riding and Driving School in Munster, Germany. A hayloft went entirely up in flames and 60 people were needed to control the fire. The damage is estimated over 100,000 euro. None of the animals came in jeopardy as the hay loft was a free standing building where straw and hay was being stored.

Australian rider Jayden Brown has sold his Grand Prix horse Furst Friedrich as a schoolmaster to a private stable in Sydney. Furst Friedrich is a 14-year old Westfalian gelding by Furst Piccolo x Apart. The chestnut made his international show debut at small tour level in 2012 and moved up to Under 25 Grand Prix in 2013. The pair contested the senior GP classes at the end of 2013. Their last show together wasthe 2016 CDI-W Sydney last October where they scored 63.900% in the Grand Prix and 69.300% in the Kur.

In an interview with the local television RTV Drenthe, Adelinde Cornelissen said she is focusing on the 2020 Olympic Games with four horses. Her 11-year old Aqiedo is her Grand Prix choice at the moment. The black stallion has competed in two CDI's in 2016, Compiegne and Rotterdam. He's not been out since June and Adelinde is skipping the World Cup indoor season with him. Her other three options are the 6-year old Fleau de Baian (by Jazz x Ulft), the 5-year old Governor (by Totilas x Jazz) and the 4-year old Gelderlander Henkie (by Aleksandro P). Parzival has been retired from sport. In the interview she said, "he's my mate. I ride him daily, give hium a lot of attention and he goes out. But there will be no more shows."

Gestut Westfalenhof has acquired the 3-year old licensed stallion Baron (by Benicio x Sir Donnerhall x Friedensfurst) from Helgstrand Dressage. The chestnut stallion is licensed with the Danish warmblood society and recently completed the 2016 Danish Autumn Stallion performance test in Torring with 802.5 points as third highest scoring stallion.

The 18-year old Dutch warmblood gelding Teo (by Democraat x Uniform) has been sold to Canada. The grey gelding participated at the 2016 European Under 25 Championships in Hagen, Germany, and became a silver medallist at the 2016 Polish Grand Prix Championships. 

The soap opera concerning Dutch-Turkish rider Ceylan Avinal and her Grand Prix horse Zygrande le Coupied continues with yet another dramatic chapter. Both horse and rider have gone into hiding and are running away from prosecution. A raid was held at Rob van Puijenbroek's stud farm De Begijnhoeve in Retie, Belgium, on 4 January 2017, after investigators were tipped that the horse might be there. Van Puijenbroek and his husband Tommie Visser were baffled, when they saw a team arrive at their barn with a warrant and the bailiff, police, a vet and a lorry in tow to pick up Zygrande le Coupied. The horse was not at the property and the owners were more than surprised to have been tipped as the culprits in this stow-away affaire that still hasn't come to an end.


When asked if Christian Carde (retired chief of the Cadre Noir) has ever used draw reins, the former international dressage judge replied: "I have never used draw-reins because, like all rein-aids while riding, „they are useless for those who can do without“, like the late general Durand once said. Within dressage riding they are not to be recommended because with them the rider tends to bring the horse prematurely and with force on the bit. In our equestrian tradition this happens by advancing the ears above the horse's mouth and not by pulling the mouth backwards. It is the exaggeration, better the brutality, which some riders show in the application of this rein-aid that has annoyed the equestrian world and has led to Switzerland forbidding the draw-reins, like they forbid the hyperflexion for the very same reasons."

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