Youngest rider follows in Olympian father’s footsteps at World Championships: ‘Dad’s here as my groom!’

  • Alina Dibowski is the youngest rider at the eventing World Championships and made her German senior squad debut as she entered the dressage arena this morning with Barbados 26.

    “It’s been great,” she said. “Now it’s a little bit overwhelming, entering the arena in the German squad for the first time, but it’s a very exciting thing.”

    Alina is just 21 years old and her father Andreas Dibowski is a veteran of the German team – he has ridden at four Olympics, four World Championships and eight European Championships, with four European team medals (three golds and one silver) and an Olympic gold to his name.

    “He’s my groom this week, on paper!” said Alina.

    Asked what advice Andreas gave her before her test, Alina replied: “That I should ride as always, and do my best as always.”

    Alina has been riding the 13-year-old Polish sport horse Barbados 26 for eight years.

    She said: “We know each other very well, which is what makes our partnership unique, and he’s very loyal. He knows when it’s important and he showed it today again.”

    Alina and Barbados scored 30.6 for their test, sitting just inside the top 25 at the lunch break.

    “I feel it was very good,” she said. “I think we need to analyse the points for each single section and look at where I lost the points. But all in all, the horse did a very good job and I’m pleased with my riding so there’s nothing to complain about.”

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