Yesterday immediately after the removal of the show jumping fences of the final phase of Olympic eventing and the cheering for the proud Olympic eventing medallists, the trotting up for dressage took place. All riders nicely dressed up in their Olympic team outfit came into the arena to present their horses. Not many were watching, but those there loved to see the possible medallists, quite a challenging lot! The black Painted Black in the hands of Spanish Morgan Barbancon had to be presented twice but passed without any problem as soon he was woken up. The Spanish team in the hands of team trainer Jean Bemelmans has to do without double silver Olympic medallist Beatriz Ferrer Salat due to problems with her horse Delgado. Too bad. Martin Dockx and Grandioso took over the starting place in the Spanish team. The Dutch teamcoach Sjef Janssen stirred up some dust as he talked to Dutch press about Totilas being in his stable to be trained with Matthias Alexander Rath after the Olympic Games, when he has resigned as a teamcoach.
Danish Anne van Olst will ride Mr Clearwater instead of Taikoen. "After a great training yesterday morning unfortunately Taikoen seemed to have hurt himself when he got scared as we walked back to the stable. Concerning the great future of this quality horse we decided that I will ride Mr Clearwater since he is in the shape of his life!!! This is gonna be his 6th International Championship for the Danish team in a row. Is that what you call a TOP horse?", Anne van Olst said.
Denmark has drawn starting number 1 and Anne is the first of their team so she will be able to throw down the gauntlet immediately! The order of the ten nations is as follows: Denmark, Canada, Australia, Spain, Great Britain, United States, Sweden, Poland, The Netherlands and last but not least Germany.
Find here a nice selection of pictures of the trotting up yesterday and practice in the arena of today. Tomorrow it will all start. Let Olympic dressage begin!