New world dressage leader for first time in nine months

  • Dressage star Isabell Werth has topped the world rankings following her win at the FEI World Cup leg in Lyon (26-30 October).

    Isabell’s victory brings to an end team-mate Kristina Bröring-Sprehe and Desperados FRH’s nine-month reign at the top of the leaderboard.

    The 47-year-old holds the title with her own Weihegold Old, with whom she won team gold and individual silver at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

    Isabell also produced a personal best freestyle score of 90.09% on the 11-year-old mare at Lyon last week.

    “Isabell and Weihegold Old blew the competition away at the FEI World Cup Dressage in Lyon,” said FEI dressage director Bettina de Rham.

    “We now have seven more qualifiers in the western European league, and if the competition stays this tight we will have an incredible final in Omaha next March.”

    The dressage legend has an incredible 10 Olympic medals, seven World Equestrian Games medals and 14 European Championship medals to her name.

    While Germany’s Dorothee Schneider (Showtime FRH) and US rider Laura Graves (Verdades) remain unchanged in their positions of third and fourth in world rankings, Carl Hester has moved up from eighth to fifth with Nip Tuck.

    Fiona Bigwood (Attherupgaards Orthilia) is the next highest-ranked Brit, moving up one place from 18th to 17th, with Charlotte Dujardin (Valegro) in 41st and Spencer Wilton (Super Nova II) in 45th.

    Other notable moves include Spain’s Severo Jesus Jurado Lopez and Lorenzo, winner of the opening leg of the 2016/17 FEI World Cup dressage series in Denmark, jumping four places into the top 10.

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    Hans Peter Minderhoud, winner of the 2015/16 FEI World Cup dressage final in Gothenburg with Glock’s Flirt — with whom he is currently ranked 11th — has also shaken up the leaderboard with another of his rides.

    The Dutch rider has made a huge leap from 176th to 32nd in the world with Glock’s Johnson TN NOP following their third place in Lyon.

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