Success for dressage rider Susan Pape

Great Britain’s Susan Pape achieved top-ten placings in strong company at the prestigious Hagen CDI4* in Germany recently,  British Dressage has reported.

This year the theme was ‘Horses & Dreams meet France’ .

Riding Harmony’s Don Noblesse (Dancier x Don Davidoff), a 12-year-old black stallion owned by Harmony Sporthorses, Susan achieved ninth in the Grand Prix for Special on a score of 71.63% followed by 10th in the Special with 70.66%. Both classes were won by the home nation’s Sönke Rothenberger and Cosmo 59 at their first show since a fire destroyed the Rothenberger family’s training centre at the end of February.

“I’m very pleased with him [Don Noblesse],” commented Susan following her return home to Hengststation Pape in Hemmoor, North Western Germany, where she’s based with husband Ingo Pape. “I’m very happy. The horse has gained so much more strength and although there are still areas where he can improve, he gave me a very good feeling. He’s a marvellous horse, and my favourite of them all.”

Susan_Pape_competiing withHarmony’s Don Noblesse
Photo :British Dressage

As a five year old, Harmony’s Don Noblesse reached the finals of the Bundeschampionate and was subsequently bought from the PSI auction. He stood in the finals of the prestigious Nürnberger Burgpokal and in the Louisdor Cup for upcoming Grand Prix horses and finished third in both classes. In 2017, in his first Grand Prix season, he earned several wins and high placings to get selected for the Nations Cup in Rotterdam.

Following a year out after Rotterdam, the breeding stallion has come back stronger than ever, as was evidenced with two plus-70% Grand Prix Special scores at Wellington in Florida where Susan bases herself for two months of every year. “And he’s not even at his peak yet,” she says. “He’s a strong horse and it’s a nice feeling knowing that there’s more to come.”

Susan, who trains with her husband Ingo and Michael Klimke, moved to Germany in 1982 and enjoyed several years under the tutelage of the great Herbert Rehbein and his wife Karin, rider of the legendary dressage stallion Donnerhall. “I did my apprenticeship and worked with Karin Rehbein for seven years. It was an incredible time, grooming for Karin and the great Donnerhall, and it was there that I met my husband.”

She accredits many of her top ride’s qualities to his Donnerhall ancestry. “I can see and feel Donnerhall in Don Noblesse. The strength in the body…the talent for collected work…the way of collecting. There are so many similarities. He has a very good mind also. It doesn’t matter what stall he’s in at a show, or flying, so long as he has something to eat, he’s fine.

“I’m delighted to ride such a horse and thankful for the opportunity they [Harmony Sporthorses] give me to ride these horses.”

First British international dressage event of year today

Today marks the start of the first international dressage competition of the year on British soil as more than 70 competitors from nine countries head to Bedfordshire’s premier venue, Keysoe for three days  of action over senior, young rider, junior and pony classes in the CDI3*, all supported by Childéric, Spillers, Equine Construction, TRM, Dodson & Horrell, Devoucoux and Keysoe Boutique.

Leading the British charge is Carl Hester who brings his own and Jane de la Mare’s Nip Tuck, or Barney, who’s back in action after a break since the 2017 European Championships.

Dressage rider Carl Hester competing at the Olympics Photo: Georges Souvier

Also travelling from the yard is Charlotte Dujardin with catch ride Erlentanz, who she’s riding for owner and normal jockey Sonnar Murray-Brown while his broken leg mends. She also has Mount St John VIP in the small tour ranks; a great warm up ahead of the NAF Five Star Winter Championships where the Vivaldi-sired mare has qualified for both NAF classes, the PSG and Inter I.

Charlotte Dujardin in action Photo: British Dressage

Heath Farm in Oxfordshire also has two riders bound for Keysoe; Emile Faurie brings his newest star Café’s Caletta for a first CDI run on home turf while his stable jockey Tom Goode is making his big tour CDI debut with Samantha Geddes’ Vivaldi-sired Dior.

British team rider Gareth Hughes will be looking to resume his 2018 form with Anne Keen’s Don Carissimo when they won both the Grand Prix and Freestyle at the May CDI3* in Aachen.

Also flying the Union Flag in the Big Tour will be Henriette Andersen (Flavio), Liz Diegutis (Saskia Hit), Maria Eilberg (Royal Concert), Sara Gallop (Bandreo), Alex Hardwick (Royal Chester), Emma Hindle (Romy del Sol), Georgina Stokes (Talented Mr Ripley) and Vicky Thompson Winfield (Artist).

Small Tour riders include: Katie Bailey (Boccelli 6), Nikki Barker (Durable), Henry Boswell (Folt), Katrina Cantrell (Woodlander Donna Summer), Kate Cowell (Dramatic Conquest), Louise Davison (De Galles), Jess Dunn (Alicante Valley), Paul Friday (Roman Noir Himself), Nathalie Kayal (Cleverboy), Kate Lister (World Exclusive), Sarah Turner (Eduardo) and Sarah Williams (Bohigas W).

They join riders from Australia, China, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland and Portugal.

Our selected Young Riders are: Rebecca Bell (Nibley Union Hit), Isobel Berrington (Bing), Angus Corrie-Deane (Tiny Tempur), Charlotte Dicker (Sabatini & Salomon Z), Jade Ellery (Porsche’s Eloy), Alex Hellings (Uvender V), Megan Ingham (Wanadoo), Thea Millward (Walentino 77) and Rebecca Swain (Bon Jovi).

The Juniors include: Megan Assouline (Botero), Catlin Burgess (Chocotof), Charlie Grieve (Fedor van het Booienhoof), Clare Hole (Pro-Motion & Winnetou GEP), Jessie Kirby (Belle Amie), Juliette Lindsay (Prince May the First), Avery Maude (Double Agent), Charlotte McDowall (Alivia), Amelia Moncrieff (Billionaire), Chloe Naylor (Karisma), Charlotte Snape (Camelot III) and Olivia Wrennall (Disneyland).

Finally, our Pony contingent is: Bonneville Bourne (Fin C We), Lavinia Johnson (Dublin), Holly Kerslake (Valhallas Zorro), Annabella Pidgley (Cognac IX & Ine), Steffi Thomlinson (Vavassa), Hermione Tottman (Brasil), Olivia Whitelaw (Brouwershavens’s Viceroy) and Mollie Witham (DZL Royal Sunrise).

Changes to British Dressage Nettex championships

It was a bumper year in 2018 for British Dressage’s Nettex Associated Championships with more  than915 combinations taking part across 10 individual championships and 2019 is shaping up to be bigger and better than ever.

Its duo of venues hosting the new format Championships in Bury Farm and Vale View  has already been announced. These venues will provide two amazing competitions but there is further news for competitors.

Top dressage rider Carl Hester support Nettex Championships

Following feedback, the following rules will be implemented for the 2019 series in the Nettex Championships:

  • The level for the Draught and Arab Championships has been upped so there is now a Championship at Medium level.
  • In the Veteran Horse Associated Championships, winning combinations are no longer required to move up a level for the following year’s event. Understanding the stress on ageing horses, the Sports Operations committee agreed that previous winners should be allowed to defend their title.
  • In the British Native Pony, GB PRE, Lusitano, TGCA and RoR Championships, winning combinations at Medium level and above (where applicable) are no longer required to move up a level for the following year’s event so can return to defend their crown.

“The Nettex Associated Championships are designed to be an event for all.” Sports Operations Manager Lou Jones commented.

“We’ve listened to feedback from our competitors and hope that the recent changes will continue to make this Championship series one of the most inclusive on offer within the BD spectrum. With the continued support of Nettex, we’re sure that this year’s series will be the best yet.”

Serena Kidd, National Equine Business Manager for Nettex added:“The Nettex product range offers something for every equine no matter what breed, age and discipline and this truly British brand is delighted to be supporting the riders in the Associated Championships.

“With top dressage rider Carl Hester putting his trust in our brand, we are proud that Nettex delivers products and customer support for riders of any level.”

To celebrate this second year sponsoring the Associated Championships, Nettex is encouraging customers and competitors from last year to connect it on social media @nettexequine and share their Nettex stories throughout the year – #nettexequine.

Qualification for the Nettex Associated Championships got underway on December 1 2018 and concludes on August 31. To find out more about how you can get involved visit

British 2019 dressage bronze championships

British Dressage has announced three host venues for this year’s Bronze Championships, Summer Music Championships and Nettex Associated Championships.

The Nettex Associated Championships, a unique series of ten title opportunities for horses of all shapes and sizes, is set to be bigger and better than ever with the breeds combining to make two show-stopping festivals.

The first of these will take place from October 31 –  November 3 at Bury Farm Equestrian Village, Buckingham, and will incorporate Championships for Draught, GB PRE, Lusitano, British Native Ponies, traditional gypsy cobs and Arab horses. The second Associated Championship fixture will be hosted by Leicestershire venue Vale View EC and will provide the setting for CHAPS, RoR, Thoroughbred and Veteran Horse and Rider combinations to battle for the accolades.

Returning after a successful debut year, the Bronze and Summer Music Championships has a new home for 2019 in premier venue, Sheepgate Equestrian Centre in Lincolnshire.

Dressage at Sheepgate Equestrian Centre , which will host the 2019 Bronze and  Summer Music dressgage championships.  Photo: courtesy of Sheepgate  Equestrian

The team at Sheepgate are no strangers to the big occasion, as hosts to the annual BD Youth Under 25s Championships, Sheepgate Premier League as well as an Area Festival, the Bronze and Music Championships promise to be well worth the journey.

Date Championships Venue
31 October – 3 November Associated Championships (1)
Inc. Draught, GB PRE, Lusitano, Native Pony, TGCA, Arab horse
Bury Farm, Buckinghamshire
7 – 10 November Associated Championships (2)
Inc. CHAPS, ROR, Thoroughbred, Veteran horse and rider
Vale View EC,
Date to be confirmed


Bronze and Summer Music Sheepgate EC,

The Nettex Associated Championships will come together to form two celebrations of all breeds. The ten-strong championship series has grown steadily in number and gone from strength to strength with the valued support of title sponsor Nettex and proven Championship venues Bury Farm and Vale View EC are on board as hosts.

Sarah Payne’s team at Sheepgate EC is renowned for hosting major events and the Bronze and Music Championships will flourish under their care.

She said: “Both myself and the Sports Operations team have thanked all venues involved in the tender process and offered congratulations to the three successful show centres. We are very much looking forward to the year ahead.”

Twelve dressage riders chosen for coaching

British Dressage has announced the 12 riders selected to attend the Sport England-funded BD Youth National Academy, supported by Avansce, which takes place over the weekends of February 9-10 and  March 2 – 3 March 2019 at Kilbees Farm in Berkshire.

The 2019 BD Youth National Academy cohort is made up of the following riders selected from last year’s inaugural Foundation Academies:

Danielle Balsdon (South West region), Caitlin Clancy (South West), Mollie Clough (Eastern), Emily Coller (Eastern), Manon Evans (Southern), Jersey Garrett (Southern), Florence Human (South West), Sofia Jankiewicz (Central), Libby Johnson (Wales), Izzy Lane (Eastern), Olivia Rose Robertson (South West) and Susie White (Northern).

Selected on their talent, determination and trainability, the 12 young riders will receive coaching from British Olympian Spencer Wilton as well as number of high profile specialists from the industry.

Montage of British Dressage teams Photo courtesy of British Dressage

These include international groom Liz Geldard-Walsh, athlete mentor Charlie Hutton and practitioners such as physiotherapist Andy Thomas and TheraPlate – manufacturer of equine rehabilitation and sports conditioning platforms.

Riders will also benefit from training sessions with Academy supplier Avansce which will involve an introduction to the Synchronicity System™ as well as individual rein contact analysis sessions.

The sophisticated sensor-based system records rein tension on a smartphone app during riding and, with the aid of a scoring system, helps guide coaches and riders to find effective training solutions.

“I would like to congratulate all the riders on their selection,” commented BD Youth Director Claire Moir. “The Foundation Academies have proved to be a great success in their first year and it is exciting to have so many committed and talented young people keen to develop their skills and carve out a future in the sport.

“The purpose of the upcoming National Academy which is the ultimate stage of the series is to provide the selected riders with a 360 degree, comprehensive approach to both their own and their horses’ development, and we look forward to working with them over the two weekends. ”

“I also would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the 2018 Foundation Academy athletes, and remind you that you’re invited to reapply for the 2019 Academies later in the year.”

British Dressage has plenty to offer

If you are passionate about dressage, at whatever level, unaffiliated or affiliated, British Dressage is here to help further your enjoyment and ensure the sport continues to go from strength to strength.

Whether you are already a competitor or just starting out, a regular spectator, or keen to get involved in other ways, British Dressage has plenty to offer you from quality training, a packed schedule of competitions and the latest news from our international teams.

British Dressage rider Carl Hester competing at the Olympics Photo: Georges Souvier

British Dressage is committed to making sure dressage is the very best it can be, for grassroots riders to Olympians alike – look into it and see what it can offer you:

A variety of memberships to suit individual needs

Access to invaluable training and also events in your area at every level

More than 2000 days of affiated competitions every year

Careers and development opportunities in dressage

Training and support to become a listed judge.

As well as a company limited by guarantee, British Dressage is a registered charity with a trading arm, British Dressage Trading Ltd.

For more information see:

Club’s last 2018 event attracts bumper entries

Horsham and District Riding Club held their last competition for 2018 -Christmas Dressage with Entertainment, writes Marilyn Turner.  Bumper entries were received for this annual competition that has been running for around 30 years.

Morning classes included Intro to Elementary, and the afternoon featured  “That’s Entertainment,” of freestyle to music in either plain clothes or costume.  Lots of fun was had with amazing music and costumes.

Laura Durkan riding Bella,winner of the Novice Class 3 taken by Hannah Dore of LRG Photography Ltd.

A very big thank you  has gone to Carol Porter for organising it and to the judges, members, friends who helped throughout the day. Special prizes were donated by Jodie and Abi Sole for the best costume, and decorated horse in all classes, while the Ice Trophy for the Best Dressage to Music sponsored be Vanessa Jameson and Sharron Smallridge.

Class 1 Intro   1st, Promise of Spring ,Rea Mitchell, 2nd Wurzel,  Rebecca Halworth (best costume) 3rd Ben, Laura Durkan

Class 2 prelim 14 1st William and Karl Standing; 2nd Jilly and Laura Tullet 3rd Bella and  Laura Durkan, and Miranda Andrews won best costume.

Class 3 Novice :Bella, Laura Durkan 2nd Monister, Karl Standing 3rd Wilfian,  Karl Standing.

Class 4 Elem 1st Yana Anne Kendell   2nd Mista Clover Jayne White

Class 5 Music in Plain Clothes 1st Yana Anne Kendall 2Mista Clover Jayne White 3rd Shakespeares Romeo

Class 5 Single in Costume, 1st Karens Lad Abi Sole (Best costume) 2nd Malleo Anne Viltek 3rd Casper Sheri Parkes

Class 6 Pairs 1st Micheal Malander /Elise Gaylor Hot Spurs Tango ;2nd Tommy   Jane Silcox   Copperfield Ellie Maye Stella Gibbs Best costume.



Sophie Wells wins second gold

Competing in the Grade V Freestyle , Britain’s Sophie Wells and her ride, C Fatal Attraction, owned by Charlotte Hogg, delivered a magnificent test to score 80.75 per cent and win her fourth Individual world gold – her second in Tryon.

Speaking after her dressage test, a delighted Sophie said; “He was a little bit tense today and on edge but he’s come out this week and given me everything.

“I was a little bit stressed last night as I thought it may be too difficult and we have only done it once at Hartpury but he’s come out today made me very proud.

Sophie Wells on her way to her second gold medal
Photo: © BEF / Jon Stroud Media

“When you miss out on an Individual Gold (WEG 2014) after training everyday it’s hard, but to achieve this after a big gap like I’ve had is amazing; that’s why Rio (Olympic Games 2016) was so special because I missed out on the gold in London (Olympic Games 2012) too.”

Commenting on Great Britain’s success, she added; “The British team is amazing and it’s so hard to get on the team and selection is a massive hurdle that you have to overcome.

“We have a lot of good riders with a lot of horse power and we’re seeing that more across the world – yesterday (the team competition) proved that. The standard of the riders, the training and the horses is amazing for the sport and it makes proud to be a part of it – but that means you have to fight.”

Grade V Freestyle final standings: Gold, Sophie Wells MBE and C Fatal Attraction | Silver, Frank Hosmar and Alphaville N.O.P | Bronze, Tomoko Nakamura and Djazz F.

Full results from Tryon can be found online at:

Silver for GB para-dressage team

Great Britain’s para-dressage team has won Team Silver at the FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina, USA, and with it, qualified a team place at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

Separated by just 0.64%, the British team were just edged to Gold by The Netherlands who finished on a final collective score of 223.597%, becoming the first nation other than Great Britain to win the team title.

Yesterday Sophie Wells MBE (Nottinghamshire) scored a Personal Best of 77.233 in the Grade V Team Test to finish top of her Grade, and Sir Lee Pearson (Staffordshire) followed with a strong score of 71.606% to put the team in fifth place overall overnight before the final set of team tests were contested today – with Great Britain’s Natasha Baker MBE (Middlesex) and Erin Orford (Buckinghamshire) taking to the arena for the Grade III class.

Sophie Wells in action
Photo: British Para Dressage

First in was Natasha with Mount St John Diva Dannebrog, owned by the Mount St John Stud. Competing in just their third team test as a combination, they produced a fabulous fluid performance to be rewarded with a Personal Best score of 74.118%.

A delighted and an emotional Natasha said; “I don’t even know what to say, I’m still shaking; she was absolutely amazing.”

“I’m just so, so, proud of her. Everything was just so much better, she went in there with so much more confidence today. I was much more confident today; it hit me a little bit [the pressure], but she just felt so good that it didn’t matter. I just felt so much more prepared going in there today; we got the halts, and just so, so happy. If that’s what we can do after seven months then in another year’s time, she’s just going to grow even more in confidence. I absolutely adore that horse.”

Competing at their first World Equestrian Games, the final rider for the British team was Erin Orford and Dior, owned by Annabel Whittet. Improving on their individual test of Wednesday, the duo put in a lovely performance to receive a confirmed score of 69.029%, bettering their mark from last year’s European Championships.

Speaking after her test, Erin said; “I was so proud of her. I had hoped we’d done enough but unfortunately the scores weren’t on our side. She had a bit of stage-fright on Wednesday, but today I was really pleased, I couldn’t have asked any more of her, we went in there and gave it everything.”

Following the completion of the final class of the day, the Grade I’s this afternoon, the confirmed final team score for Great Britain of 222.957% saw them clinch the Team Silver medal, and seal their place at Tokyo in two years’ time.

Commenting on the team’s performance, Para-Dressage Performance Manager, Sarah Armstrong said; “Our target was to return with a team medal, we’ve done that; and to qualify for Tokyo, and we’ve done that. All of the athletes have delivered great tests over the last two days, and I’m delighted for them.

“We’re happy with how we delivered in the arena, they delivered their best. They have worked so hard, the athletes and the whole support team behind them; we knew it was going to be tough, but I’m thrilled with what they’ve delivered and that the margin was so small.”

Final Team Standings: Gold, The Netherlands = 223.597 | Silver, Great Britain = 222.957 | Bronze, Germany = 219.001

The para-dressage competition draws to a close tomorrow with the final event, the Freestyle, contested. Sophie Wells MBE, Grade V, and Natasha Baker MBE, Grade III, will both take to the arena as they compete for the second Individual titles of the Games.

Equestrian Team GBR is supported by the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme; the British teams are very grateful to the support they receive from the British Equestrian Federation Fund and official partners Dodson and Horrell, Equi-Trek, FALPRO England, Musto, NAF and Point Two.

Britain wins team bronze in dressage

    The British equestrian team is going well at the FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, USA,

    Charlotte Dujardin, based in Gloucestershire, and Mount St John Freestyle have won their first Individual medal as a combination on their debut at a major championship. They had an outstanding performance, scoring 81.489% to take bronze in the Helgstrand Dressage Grand Prix Speciala Rose.

    Charlotte Du Jardin Photo: British Dressage

    Charlotte claiming her third individual gold in the Grand Prix Special at a World Equestrian Games, ahead of home favourite Laura Graves who took silver with Verdades.

    All four of the British combinations qualified for today’s competition after their performances in the Grand Prix yesterday which saw Great Britain win team bronze and secure Olympic qualification for Tokyo 2020.

    Emile Faurie, from Oxfordshire, was the first to go with Dono di Maggio, owned by Hof Kasselmann and the pair produced a score of 70.38% after a some good highlights during their test.

    Team GBR Dressage
    Photo: John Stroud Media


    Afterwards Emile said; “It wasn’t his best performance today.  He’s a massive horse and the last few days have taken a lot out of him but he really tried.  I gave him a very short warm up but he’s inexperienced.

    “He’s a brilliant horse and he’ll be even better next year.  That’s just the way it goes sometimes.  The trip has been a great experience for him and for me, it’s been a great honour to be part of this amazing team.  Other nations are envious of the great team spirit we have.”

    Spencer Wilton, based in Reading, was next to go with Super Nova II however, after yesterday’s medal ceremony Neville [Super Nova II] was not feeling 100% and after consultation with the equine sport science and medicine team and his owner, Jen Goodman, the decision was made to withdraw from the competition.

    Gloucestershire’s Carl Hester and  Hawtins Delicato, owned by Lady Anne Evans, Ann Cory and himself, were the first to go in the final session. In just their second Grand Prix Special as a pair, the duo showed no sign of nerves in the U.S Trust Arena as they followed up from their fantastic performance yesterday to produce another superb test, scoring 77.204% to finish ninth.

    “I have to be happy with 77% plus in only his second Special and his first Championship, after all, he’s only a young horse,” Carl said. “I had a costly mistake in the one-time changes and in the heat and humidity the final centreline really took all his energy.  It’s only when you come to shows like this you learn about your horse and he’s also learned a lot here. I was happy with the team result as that’s what we came here to do but I’m equally happy today.”

    Charlotte and Mount St John Freestyle were the penultimate pairing to go and they entered the arena brimming with confidence following yesterday’s performance. Neither were unfazed by the occasion and they duly stunned the crowd with an outstanding display, scoring a personal best of 81.489% to go into second.

    Isabel Werth and Bella Rose were the final combination for the day and took to the arena, showing their class to top the standings with 86.246% and take the gold for Germany, consequently pushing Charlotte down to third.

    An elated Charlotte said: “I’m absolutely delighted! She’s only nine and that was just her third [Grand Prix] Special.  I knew going in I had nothing to lose and rode her every inch of the way. That feeling I had in the arena today was amazing and for me, it didn’t matter if the test won me a medal as I knew she’d given me everything.”

    Both Carl and Charlotte will compete again on Sunday in the Grand Prix Freestyle.


    Great Britain’s eventing team will go into tomorrow’s cross-country phase in second place after superb performances across two days of dressage.

    Ros Canter, from Lincolnshire, and Allstar B finished the day as the leading combination for the British team, ending the day with 24.6 penalties and sitting third overall.

    First into the Tryon arena on the second day for GBR was Tom McEwen, from Gloucestershire, who produced a fantastic test with Jane Inns, Alison McEwen and his own, Toledo de Kerser, scoring 28.4 penalties.

    “I was delighted with him, it was a great positive test,” said Tom. “It could have been more, I just had a mess with a change at the end but he was fantastic. It was very in there and there was a decent atmosphere this morning and he’s given us a strong team score.”

    Commenting on the cross-country; “It’s possibly not the biggest course (cross-country) we’ve jumped but it’s technical and you’ve got to keep your wits about you out there but I am looking forward to getting out and riding it.”

    Last to go for the British team was Ros Canter and Allstar B, owned by Caroline Moore and herself. The pair grew as the test wore on and produced a stunning performance to end with a total of 24.6 to soar into third place.

    A beaming Ros said: “I’m absolutely over the moon with Allstar B. He’s been such a trooper and he’s so consistent in the dressage. I gave him a day off yesterday because he worked so well the day before. Everytime he comes out he just gives me everything; I’m delighted.

    “He loves going cross-country. As long as I can stay with him and keep him pointed in the right direction; we’ll definitely be able to give it our best shot.”

    Speaking on the team; “I’m having such a good time here with everybody and the team atmosphere is absolutely brilliant. Everyone is really supportive and we’re going into tomorrow confident.”

    Adding to Gemma and Piggy’s performances yesterday, the scores delivered by Ros and Tom today see Great Britain lying in second place in the team event behind Germany. Germany’s Julia Krajewski and Chipmunk FRH lead in the individual standings and head into tomorrow’s cross-country on a score 19.9 penalties.