Kristy Oatley & Du Soleil Top Aussie Selections for Olympic Team

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Kristy Oatley and Du Soleil in the Rotterdam CDI3* Grand Prix to claim the top spot in Australia's Olympic selection events. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Kristy Oatley and Du Soleil in the Rotterdam CDI3* Grand Prix to claim the top spot in Australia’s Olympic selection events. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands, June 24, 2016–Kristy Oatley on Du Soleil equalled their personal best score to win the second of two Australian Olympic selection events with the highest placing in the CDI3* Grand Prix Friday as the Germany-based pair did in the first trial to put them at the top of the standings to go to Rio de Janeiro in six weeks. It will be their fourth Olympics.

In a format that placed enormous costs and extensive stressful travel for horses based outside Europe, the two events became as much an issue of survival and not the even playing field that was proposed.

Lyndal Oatley on Sandro Boy, also based in Germany that had to skip the first event and the Wellington, Florida-based Kelly Layne on Udon P absent from this show, both because of injuries to their horses, achieved results that would appear to place them on the team.

Mary Hanna, an Olympic and world championship veteran who lives in Australia qualified both Boogie Woogie in second place to Kristy on the rankings and Umbro.

If the horses and riders are selected based on Equestrian Australia’s published criteria the four horses and riders for the team would be made up of three combinations based outside Australia and one from, Down Under.

Mary Hanna on Boogie Woogie, one of two horses she competed for the Australian Olympic team. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Mary Hanna on Boogie Woogie, one of two horses she competed for the Australian Olympic team. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Sue Hearn who had traveled from Australia to compete Remmington in the European events wiped out her second place standing with a 68.820 per cent in the first show to turn in the lowest scoring ride of 64.340 per cent that put the pair last in the Grand Prix of 28 horses and riders on Saturday.

The duo tied with Brett Parbery on DP Weltmieser and slightly ahead of Maree Tomkinson on Diamantina for the bottom three places and thus out of contention for the team.

Four of the eight riders in the selection events that were based in Australia as well as Kelly Layne who lives in Florida paid their own expenses to compete in the two shows. The first show was in Odense, Denmark that involved a 10-hour truck drive for visitors as well asthe residents of Europe.

The selectors will consider the results and have the horses undergo mandatory veterinary examination over the next 10 days.

The results of the two selection events:

1 Kristy Oatley, 37 years old, of Hamburg, Germany and Du Soleil, a 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding–69.520 at Odense and 71.320 at Rotterdam for 140.840.

2 Mary Hanna, 61 years old, of Bellarine, Australia and Boogie Woogie, a 10-year-old KWPN gelding–67.54o and 68.000 for 135.540.

3 Lyndal Oatley, 35 years old, of Nottuln, Germany and Sandro Boy, 15-year-old Oldenburg gelding–66.067 (based on the average of three lowest scores as specified in selection criteria) and 68.800 for 134.867.

4 Mary Hanna and Umbro, a 15-year-old KWPN gelding–66.920 and 67.300 for 134.220.

5 Kelly Layne, 41 years old of Wellington, Florida and Udon P, 15-year-old KWPN gelding–67.880 and 65.426 (average three lowest scores) for 133.306

6 Suzanne Hearn, 60 years old from Bowral, Australia and Remmington, 14-year-old Australian gelding– 68.820 and 64.340 for 133.160.

6 Brett Parbery, 44 years old of Penrose, Australia and DP Weltmieser, a 13-year-old Australian Warmblood gelding– 65.180.and 67.980 for 133.160.

8 Maree Tomkinson, 47 years old of Wallan, Australia and Diamantina 4, a 14-year-old Oldenburg mare–66.100 64.640 for 130.740..