Britain takes dressage team silver at World Equestrian Games

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Laura Bechtolsheimer needed to score 78.4% to put Britain ahead of the Germans and take team silver in the dressage at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games this afternoon. She scored four per cent more, a whopping 82.51%.

This is a personal best for Laura and Britain’s first world dressage team medal ever.

Laura told H&H: “Everyone was expecting me to get a good mark, but my teammates all went so well and that gave me a lift and made me go for it. I’m just so happy with my horse, he gave me everything and it’s an emotional thing when they do that.”

Britain were third to the Netherlands and Germany after the first three riders had competed. Isabel Werth scored plus-75% riding Warum Nicht, meaning Laura and Mistral Hojris needed plus-78%.

“I knew we could get plus 75% as I’ve scored that with ‘Alf’ before, but that was the best he’s ever gone,” added Laura. “He made it so easy for me, there wasn’t an area where he was weaker. He’s rare in that he’s a very powerful horse but also stays relaxed. To me he’s the best horse in the world.”

Laura scored 10s for her extensions, piaffe, passage and pirouettes. She wasn’t even far off the only other rider to score 10s here, the Netherlands’ Edward Gal. Edward and Moorlands Totilas earned 83.915% to help their team to gold despite losing world number two Adelinde Cornelissen earlier in the day when Jerich Parzival was found to have blood in his mouth.

The last American rider, Steffen Peters on Ravel, went into third individually on 78.596%, but it wasn’t enough to give the Americans team bronze, which went to Germany.

For full report, analysis and pictures don’t miss H&H 7 October issue.