Grand Prix Dressage Day 2
FRIDAY 12th August: GRAND PRIX SPECIAL
Top 6 teams go into the Grand Prix Special which has the Grand Prix movements arranged in a different and more concentrated pattern. Marks from the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special are added together to decide the team medals. As in the Grand Prix (day 2) all horse/rider combinations perform the same test.
18:20 Spencer Wilton & Super Nova II
19:02 Fiona Bigwood & Orthilia
19:29 Carl Hester & Nip Tuck
19:56 Charlotte Dujardin & Valegro
The bar was raised today in a stunning display of dressage from the best around the world.
Carl Hester and the glorious Nip Tuck, 12 year old KWPN Gelding, entered the arena. Carl his true relaxed and confident self. Nip Tuck on the other hand had a ‘spooky moment’ just before the bell rang. However Carl the ever professional and great horseman calmed him down to enter and start the test.
Just an absolute pleasure to watch, these two are in such harmony with each other. Carl was scoring high marks a few 8’s, then sadly Nip Tuck had a big ‘moment’ at one of the plant pots, taking a big spook to the side which dropped the marks down to a couple of 4’s.
As always, quick to react, Carl reassured Nip Tuck and they resumed the test, remarkably performing an outstanding test raising the marks up to 8’s and 9’s. Finishing on 75.529% Carl Hester finished in 15th place for Team GB.
Speaking after Carl said; “I don’t have time to get nervous and no time when I’m riding that horse [Nip Tuck] to be nervous, you have to anticipate where and what you’re going to do next. By the time he got to the canter he was really good and I could get some marks back from the zig-zags and the pirouettes, and I have to have him very relaxed with trot and walk. I finished my test happy, thinking if I start tomorrow like I finished then I can really go for it because he’s been so rideable all week.”
IMAGES © BEF / JON STROUD MEDIA
Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro, as always just the most beautiful partnership. Valegro is a horse dreams are made of and with Charlotte riding in her quiet and soft manner, its just a match made in heaven. Owned, trained and ridden by Charlotte and Carl Hester, Valegro has proven time and time again that his partnership with Charlotte is one that can’t be beaten.
With an almost perfect test, Charlotte scored 9’s and 10’s throughout and as her performance progressed it was 10’s all round.
Finishing on 85.071% and in 1st place, Charlotte looks set to hold her reign as the Olympic Champion. Her main rival is Kristina Broring-Sprehe from Germany, who took over the title of World Rank No.1 earlier on this year, so Charlotte really had some pressure to show she should be World Rank No.1. Kristina finished with a high score of 82.257% so the Freestyle Dressage Individuals on Monday will be an exciting fight for the top spot between GB and Germany.
A delighted Charlotte spoke afterwards; “Today was about going in and enjoying it, that was the biggest thing. I watched a lot of people yesterday going in there looking nervous and I thought, it’s my absolute passion, I’ve got the horse of my life, I’ve got a top trainer and huge support team around me, I’ve got amazing arenas and I’ve got to go out there and enjoy it. I came out with a huge smile on my face, to be honest I had a huge smile on my face before I went in, I can’t help but smile when I ride Valegro.
“Now we’ve all been in the arena once, I think tomorrow will be better. Fiona did a fantastic job yesterday, Spencer did a really good job at his first Olympic Games and Carl did a great job too – he’s not only had to ride himself but he’s been training Spencer, Fiona and me. He’s been the rock for everyone. I honestly don’t know how he’s done it, but he’s done it for the team and I know for a fact that we wouldn’t be where we are today without him.”
Today’s result sees Team GB currently sitting in second place on the scoreboard heading into the team final. Individually, the British riders are currently placed; Charlotte Dujardin (1), Fiona Bigwood (8), Carl Hester (15), Spencer Wilton (25).
IMAGES © BEF / JON STROUD MEDIA
Current Leaderboard Grand Prix Individual
Current Leaderboard Team Grand Prix
Olympic Dressage Facts
- GRAND PRIX – this is the first stage of the team competition. Grand Prix is the highest level of Dressage and all horse/rider combinations perform the same test. This first stage of the competition takes place over two days
- GRAND PRIX SPECIAL – the top six teams from the Grand Prix progress to the Special, which has the Grand Prix movements arranged in a different and more concentrated pattern. Marks from the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special are added together to decide the team medals. As in the Grand Prix (above) all horse/rider combinations perform the same test.
- GRAND PRIX FREESTYLE – riders create their own tests, which include compulsory movements, and ride to individually-chosen choreographed music. Judges award technical and artistic marks which decide the individual medals. The top 18 riders from the combined scores of the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special tests (with a maximum of three athletes per nation) qualify for the Freestyle. Spectacular to watch, the Freestyle really is all about dancing horses!