The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) is looking to recruit a new performance director for the World Class programme following the news that Dan Hughes has stepped down from his post.

A former senior Army officer and commanding officer of the Household Cavalry, Dan joined the BEF in spring 2015 and guided the British equestrian teams to multi-medal success in Rio.

Dan said: “I have greatly enjoyed my time at the BEF and in particular the challenges of qualifying, preparing for and then winning medals in Rio this summer. Ultimately however, the constant time away from my family was taking too great a toll. I would like to pay particular tribute to the athletes and staff on the World Class programme who have always strived to be the world’s best.”

Under Dan’s leadership Equestrian Team GBR’s medal haul in Rio included individual Olympic gold medals for Nick Skelton and Charlotte Dujardin and Olympic silver for the dressage team. In addition the British Paralympic squad collected team gold, six individual golds and four individual silver medals.

Clare Salmon, BEF Chief Executive said: “We greatly appreciate the efforts made by Dan and his team in the build up to and during the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and in developing the programme for the next cycle. He had a big task for 2016 and he can be rightly proud of his achievements. We wish him well in his future endeavours.”

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The BEF recently submitted its funding bid for the upcoming Olympic cycle to UK Sport and has revealed that its plans include an increased emphasis on sports science and a more tailored coaching approach in the run up to Tokyo 2020.

Clare adds: “It’s an exciting time for equestrian sport in the UK as we aim to build on Dan’s legacy from Rio. We look forward to outlining the shape of our 2020 plans once funding levels from UK Sport have been confirmed in December.”

Sarah Armstrong, the World Class programme’s head of operations and performance manager for para-dressage, will lead the World Class programme while the process of appointing Dan’s successor takes place.