Sandra Sysojeva Declares for Poland

Thu, 03/21/2024 - 11:07
Sandra Sysjeva schooling Maxima Bella at the 2021 World Young Horse Championships :: Photo © Astrid Appels

Lithuanian Grand Prix rider Sandra Sysojeva has declared for Poland in an attempt to make it to the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris for Team Poland. 

The 40-year old has not ridden at a major FEI Championship in the past two years and is therefore eligible to ride for a team spot for her new country.

Sandra Sysojeva

Sysojeva is a professional dressage rider who runs her sales and training facility "Žirgų Pasaulis" at a large yard outside of Vilnius.

She entered the international show scene in 2012 at small tour level with the horse Forvater (by Vist) which she took to Grand Prix level and showed until 2016. Her second CDI small tour ride was King Vikont (by Vichr) which she sold to Russia in 2017.

Sandra and Furst at the 2024 CDI Ruila
The first horse that put her in the spotlight was the Westfalian Furst (by Florenciano x Furst Piccolo), whom she competed at small tour from 2016 till 2020 and won 12 international classes with out of 31 starts. Her next two stars were the Rhinelander Jack Daniel's (by Charmeur x Rock Forever) which she took from young horse level to Grand Prix between 2018 and 2022. His last show was the 2022 CDI Brno.

She rode her first major international championship for Lithuania at the 2021 World Championships for young dressage horses with the then 7-year old Found Boy (by Foundation x Furstenball), who is now competed at small tour, and with the then 5-year old Maxima Bella (by Millennium x Competent), who is now 8 and won her first international Grand Prix competition at the CDI Kalen-Towarzystwo in Poland

Declared for Poland

With Found Boy at the 2021 WCYH Verden
Already at the CDI Kalen-Towarzystwo the rumours were rife that Sysojeva was in the process of switching nationality to fulfil her Olympic dreams.

For the past six years Sysojeva has been training and collaborating with Polish dressage rider Dominika Krasko-Bialik at Centurion equestrian center and has regularly competed in Poland at national shows.

"“For many years my competition life was concentrated in Poland," Sysojeva explained. "Centurion became my training, traveling, competition second home and with Dominika Krasko we made it to a really strong team supporting each other with competition, business and life, I must say.  We have decided that it would just be easier like this for the future."

Sandra continued, "I am so thankful to Lithuanian Federation for so many years together, years that passed by very fast,  my daughter Emilija will soon start competing internationally  under Lithuanian flag, just like I did her age.  Nevertheless, now it is crucial to focus and work on competing  with Maxima Bella.”

Polish Olympic Fever

Maria Colliander, Maxima Bella, Sandra Sysojeva
and Monica Becker at the 2024 CDI Kalen
Poland secured an Olympic team ticket for Paris in June 2023 at the Group C qualifier in Pilisjaszfalu and since then the Polish dressage scene has been on fire.

Italian Anna Paprocka-Campanella also switched back to her native Polish nationality, Belarusian Olga Safranova escaped her Russian puppet country and found asylum and a new nationality in Poland, long-time Polish team rider Zaneta Skowronska sold her number one GP horse Romantic P before she knew that Poland was going to Paris, and Mateusz Cichon recently tragically lost his Olympic horse Herzregent.

Much is moving and shaking in Poland and with Sysojeva's arrival for the Polish race, the heat is turned up even more.

Photos © Astrid Appels - Kuli Tedre - private

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