Britain’s para dressage team ready for action at Gothenburg Europeans

  • The FEI European Championships will get under way in Gothenburg, Sweden, tomorrow (Monday, 21 August) with the European Para Dressage Championships leading the way.

    The para dressage team will be in action on day one of the championships, competing for individual medals across the grades. Erin Orford, a late addition to the team after Natasha Adkinson had to withdraw Sweet Caledonia before travelling to Sweden, will be the first rider into the arena for Britain. Erin and the 14-year-old Dimaggio mare Dior will perform their grade III test at 8.10am BST.

    They will be followed by H&H blogger Suzanna Hext, also in grade III, who will ride Pammy and Charlie Hutton’s Abira (pictured above) at 9.10am BST.

    Sophie Wells will attempt to repeat her grade V individual championship victory from the Rio Olympics, competing at 1.20pm BST. Sophie rides her own and Charlotte Hogg’s 10-year-old C Fatal Attraction, on whom she won team gold and double individual silver at the 2015 European Championships.

    Finally, Julie Payne will make her championship debut at 2.20pm BST in the grade I division. Julie will partner Di Redfern’s 10-year-old mare Athene Lindebjerg, winner of three gold medals in Rio with Sophie Christiansen.

    The para dressage team medals will be contested on Tuesday (22 August), with Britain gunning to retain their European title, having never been beaten at a para dressage championship. The para dressage freestyle will take place on Wednesday.

    The British team for the European Dressage Championships features Carl Hester (Nip Tuck), Spencer Wilton (Supernova II), Gareth Hughes (Don Carissimo) and Emile Faurie (Lollipop 126) and they will begin their campaign on Tuesday, 22 August. The grand prix gets under way at 2pm BST on Tuesday.

    Buy the current issue of H&H (dated 17 August) for our full European Championships preview in dressage, para dressage and showjumping, including full analysis of the British chances and the opposition, plus timetable and how to follow.

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