Richard Davison (pictured) and Carl Hester’s plans to compete in the Amsterdam leg of the FEI world cup dressage series this weekend ended with Wednesday’s fall of snow.

Ballaseyr Royale and Escapado were bandaged up ready to leave Richard’s yard in Staffordshire when the snow began and the riders quickly realised that could not contemplate traveling to the competition.

A disappointed Richard said: “I kept in contact with the show’s organiser
Chris van Dam, and when we realised it was too risky to try and make the show on time, we thought it was better to let him invite two riders from the waiting list.”

With Emma Hindle, who is currently in second place in the standings, giving Wie Weltmeyer a break from competition, the top class action in Amsterdam will be without any British representatives.

Standings leader Heike Kemmer, in a commanding position on 72 points, is out to cement her advantage with her experienced campaigner Albano. Dutch rider Anky van Grunsven, in third place on 37 points after her resounding victory in Maastricht, brings Gestion Salinero, while Sven Rothenberger, in fourth place on 36, campaigns Barclay, a full brother to World Cup winner Brentina.

British-based Kyra Kyrklund has made it to the show, as she sent Andiamo Thyme the day before the snow arrived. The Finnish former World Cup champion’s prime objective this year is to qualify, through the rankings, for an individual slot at the Athens Olympics.

Another colourful combination, Spanish European silver and bronze medal winners Beatriz Ferrer-Salat and Beauvalais are contesting their first qualifier of the season, which will turn the heat up on the Dutch and German combinations.

For Germany, Berlin winner Hubertus Schmidt (Wansuela Suerte) and Ann Kathrin Linsenhof (Wahajama-Unicef) will be in action, while Isabell Werth, who rides Anthony FRH, is on level points in the standings with Sweden’s Louise Nathhorst.

With such small margins between riders, winning points in Amsterdam will prove crucial for those in the hunt for a ticket to the final in Düsseldorf (1-4 April).