Proposed 2024 Olympic Dressage Qualifying Format, Almost Identical to Tokyo

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Oct. 20, 2021

Dressage at the 2024 Olympics in Paris will have a format almost identical to the 2020 Games with 15 teams of three riders and horses and 15 individual places for a total of 60 combinations, under a proposal by the International Equestrian Federation to be decided at its General Assembly Nov. 17.

Germany is the only nation so far to have gone on record proposing to reduce the number of teams to 12 with four combinations, one drop score so a country is not eliminated if a horse or rider withdraws.

At the Tokyo Games, a total of 59 combinations made the start list for the Grand Prix but one of the 15 countries lost their team spot when a horse had to drop out for health reasons. The top eight nations in the Grand Prix went on to the Special to decide team medals–Germany took gold, the United States silver and Great Britain bronze.

Specific minimum qualifying scores, the competition format and other details will be worked out over the next year.

With 60 combinations at the Olympics, dressage is the smallest of the three disciplines at the Games, jumping the most with a total of 75 combinations including 20 teams and eventing with 65 with 16 teams. Like dressage, the jumping and eventing teams comprised three combinations in 2020 and the same format is proposed for 2024.

Frank Kemperman, in his last report as chairman of the FEI Dressage Committee after 12 years in the post, described this year’s Olympics competition as at “an outstanding level and the Athletes presented exciting sport. The Organizer of the Tokyo Games did a tremendous job and the conditions for horses and human were the best of the best. Also, all FEI Officials contributed to the success of the Games and here I want to mention especially the Judges as they got compliments from many for their first class judging.

“It is a great pleasure to see that the new format was well accepted by all and worked brilliantly. Only some small details should be discussed for the future.”

The proposed qualifying format for the 2024 Olympics as proposed by the FEI:

One for France as host nation

Six best teams from the world championships in Herning, Denmark in 2022

Three best teams from northwestern and southwestern Europe at the 2023 European Championships

One best team from Central & Eastern Europe, Central Asia at qualifying event

Two best teams from the Americas at the 2023 Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile

One best team from Africa/Middle East qualifying at the 2022 world championships or, if not filled, at an Olympic qualifying event

One best team from Southeast Asia/Oceania at the 2022 world championships or, if not filled, at an Olympic qualifying event

For the 15 individual places, the best four results at designated qualifying events from Jan. 1, 2023 to Dec. 31, 2023 will count.

Two best (total 10) in the Olympic rankings for each of the five geographic groups–A-Northwestern Europe; B-Southwestern Europe; C-Central & Eastern Europe, Central Asia; F-Africa/Middle East, and C-Southeast Asia/Oceania.

Two best from the 2023 Pan American Games

Two best from North, Central South America

One best ranked from Olympic rankings excluding nations already qualified