A trainer carousel has taken place in the past few weeks amongst Dutch A-team riders. Horses.nl reported that both Madeleine Witte-Vrees and Anne Meulendijks have left their long-time coaches for new inspiration.
Madeleine Witte-Vrees, who missed out on the majority of the 2019 outdoor season because of injuries to her two GP horses Cennin and Charmeur, has left her coach of 10 years, Anky van Grunsven, for Nicole Werner. The switch happened in the summer.
"I have learnt a lot from Anky and it went really well, but maybe it was time to switch," Witte-Vrees told Horses.nl. "Nicole notices everything, also my seat because sometimes issues creep in. I'm 47 now and I have to work harder than when I was 20. Nicole pays attention to all movements, but also on me. We have a very good connection and I'm very happy. She is also there at all big shows with Edward (Gal) and Hans Peter (Minderhoud) and that's super nice."
Madeleine added that both her GP horses are back in full training.
Only weeks after winning the World Cup Qualifier in Zakrzow, Poland, Anne Meulendijks decided to leave her coach Jeanine Fiechter for Sjef Janssen. Meulendijks competed at the CDI Stockholm this weekend with her top ride Avanti (by United) and placed 7th in the Grand Prix and 8th in the Kur.
"We changed a few things the last few weeks because since recently I train with Sjef Janssen," Meulendijks told Horses.nl. "It's only been a few weeks, but we started to focus on different things. For instance we worked hard on the canter tour and I really made progress, which you notice in my points. Also for the zig zag and pirouettes Sjef gave me a few very good exercises."
The switch in trainer came about because last summer Janssen had asked Meulendijks to ride his own, Van Grunsven's and Peter van der Sande's KWPN stallion Guardian S (by Bodyguard x Trento B). She started riding him a few weeks ago and then also decided on the trainer switch.
"It really clicks well (between her and Guardian), so I was curious what it would be like to train Avanti with him," Meulendijks explained. "It seems to go well."
Photo © Astrid Appels
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