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British dressage star Carl Hester has received a 2016 global dressage visionary award.

The award, which recognises individuals who have contributed to the growth and promotion of dressage, was presented during the Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, Florida (13 February).

US dressage chef d’equipe Robert Dover, who has represented the US in four Olympic Games, was honoured with the award earlier in the season.

“What an honour to win the same award as Robert,” said Carl upon receiving the award.

Carol Cohen, who presented Carl with his award, added: “We really look up to you here and we love the fact that you continue to come and support the riders and train incredible horses.”

The 2016 global dressage festival features 12 weeks of dressage competition from 13 January to 2 April.

This year’s annual festival will host seven CDIs and the only non-championship CDIO nations cup in the western hemisphere, as well as weekly US national events and a total of over $650,000 (£459,391) in prize money.

British Olympic dressage rider Laura Tomlinson also received an accolade at the festival.


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She was presented with the best hands award for her “soft and quiet connection” with her horse, Unique.

“Unique’s such a big mover that every little correction really has a huge impact, so you’ve got to be very, very careful yet come through enough to keep it together,” said Laura. “It’s a delicate balancing act.

“She still gets nervous and tense in the arena, so it’s all about building up confidence and trust. The softer my hands, the more likely she is to trust me.”