Cathrine Dufour Seeking Start With Cassidy at Paris World Cup Final

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Cathrine Dufour and Cassidy. © 2018 Ken Braddick/Dressage-news.com

Feb. 24, 2018

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

Cathrine Dufour who rode her Cassidy to a double victory over German superstar Isabell Werth disclosed Saturday she is seeking to go to the World Cup Final in Paris in April for the global Grand Prix Freestyle annual championship.

And the pair that have been partnered from the junior ranks to the Olympic Games will likely move up the world rankings from their current standing at No. 5, as the latest results boost the total points earned in the past year over Isabell and Emilio currently at No. 3.

“We’re trying, yes!” the 26-year-old rider confirmed to dressage-news.com after success at the Gothenburg Horse Show about seeking to be among of 18 horses and riders from around the world at the World Cup Final April 10-15.

If the pair get to start it would be their first World Cup Final.

A so-called “extra starting place” can be allocated to an athlete/horse combination ranked highest in the world standings as of the end of February as long as the duo have ridden in at least two World Cup qualifiers.

Cathrine and her 15-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding did this, winning on Cassidy, at Herning, Denmark last October and then winning again at Gothenburg this week with scores of 80.674 per cent in the Grand Prix and 88.200 per cent in the Freestyle that earned her a total of 40 points and tied in 12th place in Western Europe with Great Britain’s Hayley Watson-Greaves. Western Europe is allocated nine of the Final’s 18 starting places, plus the defending champion, that this year is Isabell Werth.

Two World Cup qualifiers remain, one in Wellington, Florida next week and the other at ‘s-Hertgonbosch, Netherlands Mar. 8-11.

If Cathrine is issued an invitation, the Final could see her go head-to-head with Isabell defending the title she won in Omaha last year on her world No. 1 horse Weihegold as well as American Laura Graves on Verdades, current world No. 4 and reserve champion at Omaha.

Laura of Geneva, Florida, is is entered in the World Cup event at the Palm Beach Dressage Derby in Wellington next week with scores that will count for the rankings as of the end of February.

Cathrine and Cassidy were stars in juniors almost a decade ago then moved up to young riders then the Under-25 division before starting international Big Tour in 2015. The pair were the top scoring members of the Danish team at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, finishing 13th overall.

The duo led Denmark to European Championship team silver in Gothenburg last year, as well as winning both individual and freestyle bronze behind Isabell Werth on Weihegold and German team mates Sönke Rothenberger and Cosmo, No. 2 in the world.

Cathrine and Cassidy first moved on to the world ranking list at No. 691 in October, 2015 climbing to No. 5 where they were placed at the end of January

Anna Kasprzak on Donnperignon was ranked as high as No. 4 in the world, the highest world standing for a Danish combination since the current ranking format was created almost a decade ago.