Edward Gal, Dutch dressage rider

  • The Netherlands’ Edward Gal– born on 4 March 1970 – is one of the world’s leading dressage riders.

    He learnt to ride at the age of 14, training at Rien van der Schaft before moving to Anky van Grunsven‘s yard.

    In 1998 Edward was placed fourth at the PAVO cup – a young horse championship – with Kappuccino.

    Since 1999, Edward has been highly successful on the international scene, training a number of horses up to grand prix level, including Gestion Risky Business, Gestion Kappuccino, Geldnet Lingh and Gribaldi.

    He finished second at the 2005 Wold Cup finals in Las Vegas on Lingh, and came home with team silver from the 2005 European Championships in Turin as well as the 2006 World Equestrian Games at Aachen.

    However, Edward’s most successful partnership has been with Moorlands Totilas, son of Gribaldi. At the Olympia World Cup qualifier 2009, they broke their own world record score in the grand prix freestyle with an outstanding 92.3%.

    After winning three gold medals at the 2010 World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, the dressage world was shocked when the news broke that this extraordinary horse and rider partnership was to be broken up. Totilas was sold to Paul Schockemohle to be ridden by German rider Matthias Alexander Rath.

    However, Edward was given the honour of naming Totilas’ first UK foal in April 2011. The jet-black colt was named “Te Amo” after one of Edward’s favourite songs by pop star Rihanna.

    There was controversy over Matthias Rath and Totilas’ floorplan in June 2011 when they won the national title at the German Dressage Championships. Allegedly the routine was virtually a mirror image of Edward’s.

    In October 2011 Edward took the ride on grand prix dressage stallion Blue Hors Romanov.

    Edward rode the inexperienced 11-year-old gelding Undercover at the London 2012 Games, despite only gaining the ride a few months earlier, helping the Netherlands to win team bronze.

    Edward and business partner Nicole Werner currently manage a dressage stable in the Netherlands, where Edward coaches other top riders. He works alongside partner Hans Peter Minderhoud, supporting each other in training and competitions.

    Together they have built up a world-class yard of about 50 horses, including a number competing at grand prix level.

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