US Olympic Dressage Team Selection Procedures Eased, Qualifying Begins Oct. 5

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The Tokyo Olympic logo for the Games is still called Tokyo 2020 though deferred to 2021.

Aug. 27, 2020

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

United States dressage team qualification for next summer’s Tokyo Olympics begins Oct. 5, significantly eased from requirements prior to the Games delayed for a year because of coronavirus.

The procedures drawn up by the U.S. Equestrian Federation require scores of Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special from two CDI tryout/qualifying competitions between Oct. 25 and April 4 in the initial qualifying period.  One Grand Prix result must be from competition after Jan. 1. Scores can be attained at any U.S. or foreign foreign CDI3*/4*/5*/CDI-W or CDIO.

No mandatory outing in the initial phase that had been required along with a minimum of three CDI results in 2020 is necessary under the 2021 selection procedures.

Based on results in the initial qualifying, up to eight rider/horse combinations will be named to a short list and another four may be added as alternates.

Short listed combinations will be required to participate in specified events, that could be CDIs or CDNs and may include competitions in Europe. A mandatory outing may be required of short listed prospects.

The official rankings when horse shows were halted in mid-March but will not count toward the deferred selection program with the Grand Prix Special average:
1. Adrienne Lyle & Salvino 80.170%
2. Steffen Peters & Suppenkasper 76.298%
3. Olivia LaGoy-Weltz & Lonoir 75.617%
4. Ashley Holzer & Mango Eastwood 72.901%
5. Sabine Schut-Kery & Sanceo 72.256%
6. Charlotte Jorst & Kastel’s Nintendo 72.234%
7. Adrienne Lyle & Harmony’s Duval 72.092%
8. Katherine Bateson-Chandler & Alcazar 70.032%

Teams for the Olympics are limited to three rider/horse combinations. There are, however, provisions for a reserve pair and the U.S. as well as other nations are expected to send a fourth combination as backup.

The first scheduled CDI in the changed selection criteria is a World Cup and CDI3* event at Tryon Oct. 22/25.

In the 2020 tryout period, CDIs have been also been scheduled in California at Temecula Nov. 12/15 and Thermal Nov. 19/22 and in Wellington, Florida Nov. 12/15 and Dec. 10/13.

The competition calendar for 2021 is not yet confirmed, but seven qualifying CDI events are schedule for Wellington and one in California within the initial qualifying period ending April 4.

A European competition schedule that had been provided for in 2020 has been complicated by changes in the dates of major competitions such as the World Equestrian Festival in Aachen, Germany where the CDIO5* dressage does not begin until after the deadline for American nominated entries for the Olympics.

The U.S. is among 15 nations that have team starts along with 15 individual spots for the Olympics.

The Olympic dressage schedule:

July 23-Dressage horse inspection
July 24-Grand Prix-1st team & individual qualifier (30 participants) 17:00/22:15 local 4/9:15am USET 10:00/15:15 CET
July 25-Grand Prix-1st team and individual qualifier (30 participants) 17:00/22:15 local 4/9:15am USET 10:00/14:15 CET
July 27-Grand Prix Special-team final (24 participants) 17:00/22:15 local 4/9:15am USET 10:00/14:15 CET
July 28-Grand Prix Freestyle-individual final (18 participants) 17:30/21:00 local 4:30/8am USET 10:30/14:00 CET