The Year in Photos
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The year was another triumph for Charlotte Dujardin on Valegro–two gold medals at the European Championships, repeat winner of the World Cup, nine victories in nine starts in 2015 (14 consecutive wins going back to mid-2014). Four years as the best of the best.
Performances by Kristina Bröring-Sprehe and Desperados at the Europeans were poetry and although placed second the championships capped a year in which the pair posted nine victories and consolidated the top ranking in Germany and No. 2 in the world.
At the European Championships the Spanish partnership of Beatriz Ferrer-Salat and Delgado rose to stardom after years of health issues kept the horse out of competition for most of his Big Tour career.
The United States again has two combinations that give the country hope of being back on the Olympic medals podium–the decade-long American champion rider Steffen Peters with the exciting young mare Rosamunde and the veteran Legolas and the newly crowned title winner Laura Graves and Verdades.
Continuing to amaze as both trainers and riders were Isabell Werth and Carl Hester.
Isabell won her first championship gold medals–team and individual–a quarter century ago and in 2015 competed four different horses at Grand Prix with a fifth, Bella Rose, expected to return to competition early in 2016. She logged eight victories on Don Johnson FRH, four in four starts at Grand Prix on Emilio and one on El Santo NRW in 2015. Beatrice Buchwald, her assistant, logged four CDI wins in six starts on Weihegold OLD and was in the medals on the six-year-old DSP Belantis at the World Young Horse Championships.
A mixture of humor and experience over more than a quarter century–most of it in Great Britain’s lean years–has made Carl Hester a much admired face of dressage. His knowledge and talent have produced a succession of elite mounts for himself and Charlotte Dujardin to help keep Great Britain on championship medals podiums for the past six years. Some of the horses: Escapado, Liebling II, Valegro, Uthopia, Dances With Wolves, Nip Tuck and others as well as coach of other team combinations.