Sep 09, 2021
Team Germany has clinched the team title for the 25th time at the FEI Dressage European Championships. There have been a total of 29 editions.
The team composed by Dorothee Schneider (with Faustus), Helen Langehanenberg (with Annabelle), Isabell Werth (with Weihegold OLD) and Jessica von Bredow-Werndl (with TSF Dalera BB) performed brilliantly, pinning Great Britain into the second position. Denmark won bronze.
Germany also won the Team Gold at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, but Langehanenberg did not get to compete. Von Bredow-Werndl was riding the same horse as in the Tokyo Olympics and posted the biggest mark in the Grand Prix.
At first the British were in the lead but the German team soon changed the situation as Werth and her mare Weihegold came into the ring. Before the final day, the German team was in third position behind Denmark in second spot and Great Britain in first. Daniel Bachmann Andersen was the first Dane to go, producing a score of 76.366.
When Werth rode her technically perfect test and scored a 79.860, she could not hide her disappointment:
“We had just a little mistake at the end of the two-tempis where she was a bit quick at the end, but the last centreline was superb so I was really happy. But a score under 80%... in the last three years I had just one competition with her under 80% and that was Paris at the World Cup Final.”
Denmark’s Cathrin Dufour with Bohemian came really close to Werth’s leading score, however a blip in the first canter pirouette held them back from a better result.
Germany’s von Bredow-Werndl sealed Germany’s victory with an incredible mark of 84.099. When asked if she felt the pressure for the team, especially because British dressage rider Charlotte Dujardin was yet to perform, she admitted she did, but her performance made up for it.
“She is amazing! She was on fire but still so focused and concentrated that I couldn't have asked for more. From the very first second to the very last second she didn’t give me any doubts!”. Recently Jessica von Bredow-Werndl became world’s number one dressage rider.
Charlotte Dujardin and Gio then performed brilliantly, with a score of 79.829 that slotted her into the third individual result, behind Werth and von Bredow-Werndl. At the end Germany finished on 238.944, Great Britain on 232.345 and Denmark on 231.165.
As the team results are now known our attention turns to tomorrow’s Grand Prix Special for the individual results. Rivalry will be intense again, and while von Bredow-Werndl and Dalera are looking up for the gold medal, Isabell Werth does not like being second to anyone and might try a change of boots.
In Tokyo, Werth won team gold and individual silver while she wore a pair of boots she has been wearing for the past 35 years. These are her lucky boots. When asked if the boots she was wearing were new, she replied “no, they are my normal boots but not my lucky boots. So maybe that was the problem today!”.
Earlier this week, Thieme became the 2021 Longines FEI Jumping European Champion. Now, competition continues in individual dressage.