Chris Bartle in the running for British eventing team trainer role

  • Chris Bartle has revealed that he has applied to take over the job as eventing performance manager for the British eventing team following Yogi Breisner’s retirement.

    Chris has proven his skill and talent for the job as national coach for the German eventing team alongside Hans Melzer, most recently overseeing the nation’s team silver and individual gold at the Rio Olympics. He was also behind Germany’s team and individual Olympic gold medals in 2012 and 2008, plus other notable successes at various World and European championships, having first taken up his post in 2001.

    British-born Bartle is understood to be one of several candidates applying for the position, with interviews due to take place in October.

    Michael Jung riding La Biosthetique - Sam FBW GER - warming up for dressage with Chris Bartle - during the Dressage Phase of The Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials at Badminton in Gloucestershire, UK on 5th May 2016

    Chris helps Michael Jung warm up at Badminton this spring

    A statement by Dr Dennis Peiler of the DOKR (the German equestrian federation) says: “We are very surprised and sad about the decision of Chris Bartle.

    “We were hoping Chris Bartle and Hans Melzer would continue until the Tokyo Games in 2020 as trainers. But we respect his decision. Soon we will sit together and reflect on alternatives for the future.”

    Chris told St Georg: That was a very difficult decision for me. I feel a tremendous bond with the team, the riders, the support team in Warendorf and especially with Hans Melzer, with whom I worked for 16 years successfully.

    “I would like to apply for this interesting and challenging role that might keep me closer to my home for the next four years and is also in the interest of my family.”

    Christopher Bartle and Hans Melzer watching the dressage phase of the Les Etoiles de Pau, in Pau France between 23th -26th October 2014

    Hans Melzer and Chris Bartle (right)

    In addition to his German team training role, Chris runs a highly successful training hub in Britain, the Yorkshire Riding Centre, with his sister Jane Bartle-Wilson. From here he assists top horses and riders from around the world.

    The 64-year-old has previously coached the British eventing team as dressage trainer for both the Atlanta and Sydney Olympics.

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    Chris has also enjoyed great success riding on British teams. He was sixth at the Los Angeles Olympics as a member of the British dressage team and was fourth at the 1985 European dressage championships. He also won Badminton on Word Perfect in 1998, was placed at Burghley on more than one occasion, won team gold at the 1997 European eventing championships and was reserve for the 2000 Olympics.

    This is the first time the position with the British Equestrian Federation has become available since Yogi Breisner took up the role in 1999. Neither the British Equestrian Federation nor Chris were available to comment on the news when contacted by Horse & Hound.

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