Anna Merveldt and Judy Reynolds to Represent Ireland at European Dressage Championships This Week
Published: 27.08.2007 –
Irish international riders Anna Merveldt and Judy Reynolds have both qualified to represent Ireland at the European Dressage championships in La Mandria, Turin, Italy this week [27/8/2007 to 2/9/2007].
The horse inspection is on Wednesday 29th August 2007.
The Irish riders will compete in the Team Grand Prix to be held on Thursday 30th August and Friday 31st August 2007. This class will decide the team competition. The top 30 horses and riders will go forward from the Grand Prix class to the Grand Prix Special on Saturday 1st September 2007. The top 15 in the Grand Prix Special will compete in the Grand Prix Kür (freestyle to music) on Sunday 2nd September 2007 and this class will decide the individual medals.
Just 17 riders competed in the first European Dressage championships in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1965. 18 nations are represented at the 2007 championships with 13 teams [Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Ukraine] lining out along with individual riders from 5 nations [Finland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg and Norway].
The president of the ground jury is Italian Vincenzo Truppa and the ground jury members are Gary Rockwell (USA), Evi Eisenhardt (GER), Beatrice Bürchler (SUI), Wim Ernes (NED), Isabelle Judet (FRA), Leif Törnblad (DEN). The President of the FEI dressage committee Mariette Whitages [BEL] will be President of the Appeal Committee and Gotthilf Riexinger [GER] is the FEI Technical Delegate.
Profiles of the Irish Riders:-
Anna Merveldt and Coryolano - FEI/BCM World Dressage Ranking - 112th
Anna Merveldt (44) is Ireland’s most experienced and successful dressage rider. Born in Canada she moved with her family to Ireland when just six months old. Affectionately known as “Peetzy” to family and friends alike she has been based in Munich for many years. Her big breakthrough came 14 years ago at the Barcelona Olympics when she qualified for the top 16 with Rappallo and went on to place 11th in the individual rankings. The following year she was 9th individually at the European Championships in Lipica and then took 6th place in the individual rankings in World Equestrian Games in The Hague. Anna placed 13th in the European’s in Verden in 1997 and 14th at the same venue in the European’s in 2001. On the international circuit Anna has won at Arnhem, Frauenfeld, Munich, Milan, Rotterdam and Spangenberg and on no less than five occasions a recipient of the Irish Field Dressage Rider of the Year Award. Anna competed in the World Equestrian Games in Aachen last year with the 12 year old KWPN gelding Lafitte which is part owned by her partner and fellow Irish international rider and trainer James Connor where they placed 47th. She will line out on another James Connor owned horse the 11 year old Coriolan gelding Coryolano at the European Championships in La Mandria, Italy. The promising Coryolano easily qualified to compete at the championships in his inaugural international season and demonstrated his undoubted ability by placing second in the Grand Prix Special class at the CDI3* in Achleiten, Austria in June 2007.
Judy Reynolds and Burgfraulein - FEI/BCM World Dressage Ranking - 164th
Judy Reynolds (26) is trained by Anna Merveldt and qualified last to represent Ireland at the World Equestrian Games last year with the 12 year old Russian bred gelding Rathbawn Valet. Despite being rushed to hospital for an emergency appendix operation just three weeks before WEG she still made her championship debut and placed a creditable 71st. Judy was born in Dublin and is the youngest of three children. She trains in Munich for nine months of the year and when living at home in Kilteel, near Naas, County Kildare she drives oil tankers during the winter months for her father’s firm Reynolds Logistics. A successful competitor in show ponies Judy graduated to dressage under the watchful eye of trainer Gisela Holstein and represented Ireland at junior and young rider level at four consecutive European Championships with the former Heike Holstein ride Saturday Night. Judy graduated with a music degree from NUI Maynooth in 2002. Judy qualified her fifteen year old Russian bred mare Burgfraulein to compete at the 2007 European dressage Championships in Italy.