Robert Dover and Dressage Canada Split

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Robert Dover at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky. © 2010 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Robert Dover watching a Canadian rider at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky. © 2010 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

OTTAWA, Oct. 31–Robert Dover and Dressage Canada have been unable to agree to a new coaching contract beyond the one-year agreement that ended after the World Equestrian Games where Canada placed seventh in the team competition, its best ever result at a WEG.

Dressage Canada issued a statement Sunday night that it “regrets to inform the dressage community that it has been unsuccessful in its bid to retain the services” of Robert as Team Technical Coach/Advisor Robert Dover since the contract expired Oct. 15.

“While efforts have been made over the past several months to extend this contract, the two sides have been unable to reach an agreement for this position due to financial constraints and time commitments,” the statement said.

“Dover has done a formidable job as Technical Coach/Advisor, working tirelessly in support of the Canadian Dressage Team. He was instrumental in their success on the European Tour, and best ever placing at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky. In addition to this, Dover conducted clinics for Dressage Canada for listed riders nationwide.

“There are currently efforts underway to maintain Dover on a consultant basis, which is welcomed by riders given the forthcoming 2011 Pan American Games and 2012 Olympics.”

Robert said in a statement on his Internet site, “I would only like to add that it has been an enormous pleasure and honor working with and for you all!”

Robert, 54, was one of America’s most successful dressage riders, competing in six consecutive Olympics, four world championship teams and seven World Cup Finals.

He retired after the 2007 World Cup Final in Las Vegas and sought to replace Klaus Balkenhol as coach of the U.S. team after the 2008 Olympics, but lost out to Anne Gribbons. He was then hired as coach of the Canadian team on a one-year contract.

Robert Dover on FB Kennedy at 2007 World Cup Final in Las Vegas, his last championship. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Robert Dover on FBW Kennedy at 2007 World Cup Final in Las Vegas, his last championship. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com