The FEI has awarded wild card entries to American riders Robert Dover (pictured) and Gunter Seidel for the FEI World Cup Dressage Final, presented by Offield Farms, in Las Vegas (20-24 April).

The world’s best riders will be contesting the prestigious final, but it looks like everyone will have their work cut out if they are to dethrone the current World Cup queen Anky van Grunsven, who is in electrifying form with her Olympic partner Keltec Salinero.

Anky arrives in Las Vegas off the back of two wins in the Western European League World Cup series, including an 84.42% kür at the last qualifying round in Düsseldorf. She has won the World Cup title a record six times, including once on American soil in Los Angeles, 10 years ago. Few would bet against her making it seven this time around.

However, with the world’s top riders all in action, nothing can be taken for granted. Another top partnership currently in impressive form is American rider Debbie McDonald and Brentina, who won the United States League with a 77.98% performance of their new kür, based on Aretha Franklin’s R E S P E C T.

American spectators will have plenty of home talent to support as McDonald will be joined by Leslie Morse and Kingston, who finished second in the league, along with Guenter Seidel (Aragon) and dressage legend Robert Dover (FBW Kennedy).

Germany once again demonstrates its strength and depth in the sport with three riders through. They are the former champion Isabell Werth with her 19-year-old veteran partner Antony FRH, Ann Kathrin Linsenhoff GE, who will be riding either Unicef Whajama or Renoir, and Hubertus Schmidt with Aramis.

Other notable names who will be giving their best in the Las Vegas limelight include Britain’s Carl Hester and Escapado, Sweden’s Jan Brink with Bjorsells Briar and van Grunsven’s pupil Edward Gal who will be riding either IPS Gribaldi or Lingh.

FEI World Cup Dressage Final participants

  • Anky van Grundsven NED
  • Isabell Werth GER
  • Ann Kathrin Linsenhoff GER
  • Andreas Helgstrand DEN
  • Hubertus Schmidt GER
  • Carl Hester GBR
  • Edward Gal NED
  • Jan Brink SWE
  • Sven Rothenberger NED
  • Lone Joergensen DEN
  • Marie-Line Wettstein SUI
  • Debbie Mc Donald USA
  • Leslie Morse USA
  • Guenter Seidel USA
  • Robert Dover USA
  • Leslie Reid CAN
  • Ceasar Parra COL
  • Elena Sidneva, RUS