European Championships: dressage riders open the competition in Rotterdam
From August 19th to 24th Seventy riders for twenty-four countries will be on the starting list of the dressage European Championship in Rotterdam. Forty countries will fight for the team title. Teams will try to outshine the almost invincible Germany’s riders.
Dressage riders are opening the competition this week in Rotterdam. The tension will be intense for the teams because they be fighting not only for a medal but also for three tickets to the Olympic Games. Five countries, Germany, Great Britain, Sweden, Netherlands and Spain are already qualified for Tokyo thanks to their performance at the World Equestrian Games last year. Chasing those three coveted spots will be Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Luxembourg and Portugal.
This year in Rotterdam, Sweden sends Patrik Kittel, Therese Nilshagen and sisters Antonia and Juliette Ramel, while Denmark fields Daniel Bachmann Andersen, Anders Dahl, Cathrine Dufour and Agnete Kirk Thinggaard.
Edward Gal, Anne Meulendijks, Hans Peter Minderhoud and Emmelie Scholtens will fly the Dutch flag. Regarding Germany’s riders, the only change from the gold-medal-winning team at last year’s World Equestrian Games is that Schneider has replaced Sammy Davis.
The team medals will be decided in the Grand Prix which starts on Monday and runs over two days, and the competition for placings all the way down the line will be intense.