Ireland announces first championship dressage team since 2019 – four riders selected for Herning

  • The Irish team has been revealed for the dressage World Championships in Herning, Denmark, this August.

    Four riders have been selected, including three championship first-timers, in the first championship dressage team Ireland has fielded since 2019.

    The combinations selected for the Irish team at the dressage World Championships are:

    Alex Baker with 14-year-old gelding Dutchman
    Owner: Daniel Champion and Alex, Carol and Tim Baker
    Breeder: J. Muilwijk
    Breeding: by Jazz, out of Imagine, by Fantast

    Sorrell Klatzko with nine-year-old stallion Turbo
    Owner: Sorrell Klatzko and Janine Shoffner
    Breeder: Gudrun Isenbeck-Geue
    Breeding: by Totilas, out of Falbala, by Florestan I

    Abi Lyle with 11-year-old gelding Giraldo
    Owner: Abi Lyle
    Breeder: G. Eggink
    Breeding: by Rousseau, out of Valenza, by Flemmingh

    Anna Merveldt with 13-year-old stallion Esporim
    Owner: Mario Greco, Eleonore Higgins, Michael Higgins and Giovanna Mazza
    Breeder: Coudelaria Do Monte Velho
    Breeding: by Pagao, out of Lequita, by Quiaz

    Abi also has the 11-year-old Farrell, owned by Fenella Quinn, as a reserve. Dane Rawlins with Espoire have been named as a non-travelling reserve.

    “The aim in Herning is a top-12 finish with each combination performing their best with a view to improving as we move towards the Europeans in 2023, and the ultimate objective of qualification for Paris 2024,” said Horse Sport Ireland’s dressage high-performance director, Johann Hinnemann.

    Absent from Herning will be Ireland’s sole dressage representative from the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, Heike Holstein, after it was revealed that her top horse, the home-bred mare Sambuca, has been sold to America.

    “A new chapter begins today for beautiful Sambuca,” said Heike. “I am so proud of her and all we have achieved together. To train and ride a horse that is home-bred all the way to the Olympics was a dream come true for me. I wish her lovely new owners the very best of luck and I hope to see them on the international stage soon. Thank you to everyone who has supported us on our incredible journey.”

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