Mechelen, Belgium World Cup Canceled Amid Tightened Coronavirus Measures

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Nov. 1, 2020

The World Cup event in Mechelen, Belgium that was set for the end of the year has been canceled making it fifth of 10 dressage qualifiers in Western Europe to be called off.

The joint dressage and jumping World Cup event that was to celebrate its 40th anniversary was canceled by the organizers who announced Sunday the latest measures to counter a resurgence of the coronavirus pandemic left them with no choice but to cancel.

“We wanted it so badly,” the organizers said in a statement, “we were motivated, we had now worked out different scenarios and finally came up with a nice light version to end the year with a sporty highlight. We wanted to offer, as an end-of-the-year gift, to the visitors on site but also all our fans sitting next to their Christmas tree a few days of fantastic and beautiful sport.

“We will now have to replace these moments with the wonderful memories we have since 1980 and to focus on our next edition in 2021 in the Nekkerhal, where we can finally celebrate those 40 years all together!”

Dressage qualifiers previously canceled are Lyon, France; Madrid,; Stuttgart, Germany; London Olympia, and Amsterdam. However, organizers of a Frankfurt, Germany event days before Christmas stepped up to replace Stuttgart.

A Western European qualifier was held in Denmark in October with Salzburg, Austria in early December; Frankfurt later the same month; Neumünster, Germany and s’Hertogenbosch, Netherlands still on the calendar 2021 leading to the dressage and jumping Finals in Gothenberg, Sweden in April. The annual world championship that was scheduled for Las Vegas last April was canceled, and the Tokyo Olympics were deferred for a year to next summer. 

Tightened restrictions in Western Europe have raised questions about the winter circuit of indoor shows, including the World Young Horse Championships in Verden, Germany which was already delayed from its original summer date to December.