London 2012 Olympic Medals

This weekend is the start of the US Olympic Dressage Team Selection.  The top 15 horse/rider combinations have come to Gladstone Headquarters to compete for 2 Olympic spots.  Yup, you read right – only 2 spots are open at the moment.  Steffen Peters and Ravel – the top American combination – received a bye from Olympic selectors and have automatically taken top spot.

Which leaves 2 left because rules have changed and only 3 go to participate as a team (all scores count, no drop scores AND it is a combo of the GP and GPS).  However, some countries get a 4th rider as an individual.  Currently, Great Britain, Germany, Holland, Italy have individual spots and we are waiting to hear if 3 other individual spots will open up IF Columbia can not field a team.

They have made the new rules SO complicated!!! But why would Columbia not be able to send a team?  Well, Columbia got a team spot in the London Olympics by being a top ranked team at the Pan Am Games last year. However, that is at small tour (ie, Prix St George/Intermediare I) and the Olympics is large tour – ie. Grand Prix. Personally I don’t think this is a big deal – but plenty of  people think the Pan Ams should be GP, this is another blog. I digress……  With Columbia having earned the right for a team spot at the Olympics, each rider who goes to the Olympics has to complete a Certificate of Capability (for everyone who goes this has to be done).  Which is a standard for the Olympics in every sport – so there are no competitors like “Eddie The Eagle” from the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics.  I remember watching him on TV!

Adrienne Lyle and Wizard will be trying to earn a spot on the US Dressage Team at the Selection Trials this weekend

Certificate of Capability is for riders to get 2 scores over 64% from 2 different individual judges (not combined score) from nations other than their own.  And at the moment, Columbia has no riders with the Certificate of Capability completed.  Which means that if it is not done by the official cut off date of June 17th, then the 3 spots saved for the Columbian team will be open to individual riders.  Countries who are next in line are Columbia (if they have any individuals who get their Certificate), Ireland, USA, Austria and Denmark.

Some of the first individual spots were given out based on the FEI rider rankings at a certain date.  Polland even ended up with a team of 3 based on this ranking system because 3 of their riders received individual spots.  But for these last spots?  I don’t even know how they got to this ranking order for which country would get the last individual spots.  This seems like a very complicated system and really leaving it to the last minute.  Perhaps that is more exciting?

Anyway, this weekend will be part one of two where the US will pick the next 2 riders for the team.  They will also have a reserve rider who will travel to Europe and most likely another as well for extra backup just in case.  Then they can have their team of 3, Steffen plus 2 others, an individual and another backup.


2012 USEF Dressage Festival of Champions Tentative Schedule

Friday, June 8
2:00pm Veterinary Inspections (Grand Prix, Young Rider, Junior Rider, Pony Rider)

Saturday, June 9
8:00am Grand Prix Test
Young Rider Team Test
1:00pm Awards (GP & YR) & Lunch
1:50pm Junior Team Test
Pony Team Test
Awards (JR & Pony)

Sunday, June 10
8:00am Olympic Grand Prix Special Test
Young Rider Individual Test
1:00pm Awards (OGPS & YR) & Lunch
1:50pm Junior Individual Test
Pony Individual Test
Awards (JR & Pony)

Wednesday, June 13
3:00pm Veterinary Inspections (Intermediaire I)

Thursday, June 14
10:00am Prix St. Georges Test & Awards
2:00pm Veterinary Inspections (Grand Prix)

Friday, June 15
9:00am Grand Prix Test & Awards
2:00pm Veterinary Inspections (Young Adult “Brentina Cup”)

Saturday, June 16
8:00am Olympic Grand Prix Special Test
11:00am Awards (OGPS) & Lunch
12:00pm Brentina Cup Test
Intermediaire I Test
Awards (BC & I-I)

Sunday, June 17
8:00am Intermediaire I Freestyle Test
Brentina Cup – FEI YR Grand Prix Test
Awards (I-I & BC)

USEF Para-Equestrian Dressage National Championship Tentative Schedule
Sunday, June 10
3:00pm Veterinary Inspections

Monday, June 11
9:00am Class 11 – FEI Grade Ia Team Test
Class 12 – FEI Grade Ib Team Test
Class 13 – FEI Grade II Team Test
Class 14 – FEI Grade III Team Test
Class 15 – FEI Grade IV Team Test

Tuesday, June 12
8:00am Class 21 – FEI Grade Ia Individual Test
Class 22 – FEI Grade Ib Individual Test
Class 23 – FEI Grade II Individual Test
Class 24 – FEI Grade III Individual Test
Class 25 – FEI Grade VI Individual Test

Wednesday, June 13
8:00am Class 31 – FEI Grade Ia Freestyle Test
Class 32 – FEI Grade Ib Freestyle Test
Class 33 – FEI Grade II Freestyle Test
Class 34 – FEI Grade III Freestyle Test
Class 35 – FEI Grade VI Freestyle Test
1:00pm Awards Ceremonies directly following last class

ENJOY – our armchair dressage is heating up.  USET Festival  of Champions, then it is Rotterdam CDIO, then Aachen CDIO (which is a shadow of the Olympics to come a month after) and then LONDON!!!!