USA National Coach Finalists Interviewed

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Chester Weber, chairman of the search committee for new USA dressage national coach. © 2008 Ken Braddick
Chester Weber, chairman of the search committee for new USA dressage national coach. © 2008 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

LEXINGTON, Kentucky, Aug. 3–Formal interviews with the finalist candidates for the post of the USA Chef d’Equipe/National Coach were held Monday.

Chester Weber, chairman of the committee, and the U.S. Equestrian Federation’s Dressage Eligible Athletes committee conducted the interviews.

The post of national coach has been vacant since the contract with Klaus Balkenhol of Germany was not renewed at the end of 2008 after eight years.

The Eligible Athletes committee comprises Susan Blinks as chair, Carol Lavell, Guenter Seidel, Christine Traurig, Susan Dutta, Heather Blitz, Jsn Ebeling, Leslie Morse, George Williams, Michael Barisone and Arlene Page.

The Eligible Athletes now make their recommendation to the USEF High Performance Dressage Committee which will make the final vote.

At least 10 individuals from North America and Europe applied for the position, but that list was whittled down to the finalist candidates.

Since Balkenhol’s contract ended in 2008, Jessica Ransehousen, a three-time Olympian and a former chef d’equipe, has filled in as chef d’equipe chef.

Weber, a four-in-hand driver, chaired the search committee that included Capt. Mark Phillips, Eventing Chef d’Equipe; George Morris, Show Jumping Chef d’Equipe; John Madden, Show Jumping representative, Karen O’Connor, Eventing representative; Mary Anne McPhail, High Performance Dressage Committee and Susan Blinks and Guenter Seidel of the High Performance Dressage Eligible Athlete Committee.

Compensation details have been discussed with applicants during the interview process and contract negotiations will be conducted when a final candidate is selected.