France Not Sending Dressage Team or Individuals to Tryon World Equestrian Games

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Morgan Barbançon Mestre and Sir Donnerhall II OLD. © 2018 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Aug. 23, 2018

France announced Thursday it will not send a dressage team or individuals to the World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina next month, news that came as a shock from the nation that hosted the last WEG in Normandy four years ago. Tryon will be only the second of eight world championships France has not been represented in dressage, both in the United States–Lexington 2010 and Tryon 2018.

The French Equestrian Federation (FFE) issued a one-sentence statement on its decision:

Despite the unprecedented efforts made by all in favor of dressage, the French Equestrian Federation will not be sending dressage riders to the Tryon World Equestrian Games in the US next September.”

The federation gave no explanation for the decision that had not previously been indicated as riders competed throughout Europe seeking to qualify for a start at Tryon.

Of the eight World Games since the combined championships were first staged in 1990, France has not been represented in dressage at only two of those, both in the United States–at Lexington in 2010 and Tryon this year.

The French move cuts the number of likely teams at WEG to 15 nations.

France had nominated the maximum of eight horse and rider combinations.

Those nominated were Alexandre Ayache and Zo What, Morgan Barbançon Mestre and Sir Donnerhall II OLD, Marie Emilie Bretenoux and Quartz of Jazz, Barbara Clement Klinger and Dirbini, Bertrand Liegard and Star Wars, Arnaud Serre and Ultrablue de Massa, Anne Sophie Serre and Vistoso de Massa and Pierre Volla and Badinda Altena.

Morgan Barbançon Mestre switched to ride for France after riding Sir Donnerhall in the World Cup Final in Paris in April. She has previously competed for Spain, including the 2012 Olympics in London and the 2014 WEG in Normandy, France.