MY TOP 10 AUSSIE DRESSAGE RIDERS
1. Simone Pearce riding her horse Destano scored 76.261% at Brno in the Czech Republic on 29/8/20. This is an Australian Grand Prix record and Simone has just burst onto the Grand Prix dressage scene. Had the Olympics not been postponed, Simone Pearce would have had to wait another four years until Paris 2024 to challenge for a place in the Australian team. Who knows who and what will be happening in another four years? Amazing, cancel the Olympics for one year and somebody who wasn’t in contention becomes the No. 1 consideration for an Olympic team. Amazing!
2. Kristy Oatley on Du Soleil scored 73.913% at Budapest in Hungary on 3/5/19.
3. Mary Hanna riding her mare Calanta scored 72.761% at Willinga Park in Bawley Point on 27/2/20.
4. Mary Hanna again riding her second mare Syriana scored 71.24% at Deauville in France on 19/7/19.
5. Lyndal Oatley riding her new horse Eros scored 70.957% at Aarhus Vilhelmsborg on 17/10/20.
6. Lone Joergensen riding Corinna scored 70.109% at Boneo Park on 24/01/20.
7. Sue Hearn riding Remmington scored 70% at Boneo Park on 21/09/19.
= 8. Maree Tomkinson riding DMJ Donna Elena scored 69.652% at Werribee on the 23/03/19. Unbelievably Maree scored the exact same as Fiona Selby riding Tacita at a different competition.
= 8. Fiona Selby riding Tacita scored 69.652% at Boneo on the 13/12/19.
10. Rozzie Ryan riding Jarrah R scored 68.65% at Willinga Park on the 29/2/19.
On 14/12/20, just a couple of weeks ago, the Victorian Dressage Festival at Werribee in Victoria was run under national rules (CDN). At that competition the Grand Prix was won by Lone Joergensen on Corinna with a score of 73.949%. This score does not count because it was a national competition as opposed to an international CDI competition. Normally the Dressage Festival at Werribee is a CDI, however, as I have explained earlier in this article due to Covid-19 and not the correct overseas judges, this result cannot be used in our Australian qualifying and selection process as it currently stands. Lone Joergensen and Corinna are currently ranked sixth in my mathematical rankings above. If this score of 73.949% were admissible that would raise Lone up the list to second, just ahead of Kristy Oatley and Du Soleil.
Covid-19 has inadvertently trapped the Australian dressage world in Groundhog Day and no matter how much somebody improves, we are all going to keep going around and around in a repeat circle. I think the Australian selectors need to have a crisis meeting and readdress some of the selection criteria and communicate these changes to all Australian dressage riders. This needs to be done sooner rather than later.