The best moments of the European Dressage Championships at Aachen

By Carla Passino on |



Didn’t manage to make it to Aachen? Don’t worry, we have gathered all the best moments of the championships for you.

Beautifully attired, German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen kicked off the proceedings at Aachen.

….while Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and Jon Lansink swapped their horses for a carriage.

Jade Jagger also made an appearance.

Michael Eilberg was the first British rider to compete with his championship debutant Marakov on Wednesday.

Then Fiona Bigwood set the pace for Britain aboard Atterupgaards Orthilia.

Germany’s veteran Isabell Werth and Don Johnson FRH closed the first day of the dressage competition with a competent test…

…while Werth’s historic rival, Dutch three-time Olympic-gold-medallist Anky Van Grunsven, showed off her reining skills.

Thursday saw the much–awaited return of Totilas, now ridden by Matthias Rath for Germany.

Carl Hester vanquished his Aachen bad luck with a very good test on Nip Tuck….

…and Charlotte Dujardin scored 83.029% aboard Valegro.

She was just ahead of Edward Gal and Undercover, but the Dutch pair still clinched the gold medal for the Netherlands with an excellent test.

Despite finishing second by just 1.4%, Britain celebrated its team silver medal — and is now one step closer to securing a medal at next year’s Olympics.

Then, on the eve of the grand prix special, Totilas was unexpectedly withdrawn due to health concerns. UPDATE: Totilas has now been retired from competitive dressage after having been diagnosed with bone edema. Read the owners’ official statement.

On Saturday, a sound performance gained Hester and Nip Tuck fifth place.

Meanwhile, Dujardin wowed the crowds…

…to win the grand prix special title, with Germany’s Kristina Broering-Sprehe in silver and Holland’s Hans Peter Minderhout in bronze.

On the last day of the competition, German fans pulled out all the stops to support their riders.

A superb test by Broering-Sprehe and Desperados saw the pair score an excellent 88.804% just before Dujardin was due in the arena.

It was a tense moment for Dujardin but, in a nail-biting finale, she and Valegro managed to score 89.054%, beating Broering-Sprehe and Desperados by a minuscule 0.25%, with Spain’s Beatriz Ferrer Salat in third.

Dujardin retained her European titles and Britain went back home with two gold medals and one silver. Well done!

Main image: Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro, by Hippo Foto – Dirk Caremans, courtesy of the FEI


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