Para-Equestrian riders post solid performances in a final bid to make Games team
2011 Para-Equestrian National Championships
Photograph:Free Rein Photography
Australia's top Para-Equestrian riders were put through their paces at the fourth and final Para-Equestrian nomination event in Sydney this weekend.
With a position on the four member Paralympic Games team on the line, riders were in top form with many recording personal bests in an effort to impress selectors.
Held over three days, the competition saw riders from each of the five grades perform the Team Test on Friday, The Individual Championship Test on Saturday and the Freestyle Test on Sunday.
“Everyone has competed extremely well and we’ve seen some very high scores which is fantastic,” said National Performance Director for Para-Equestrian, Julia Battams.
“As far as standard of performance goes, this is probably the highest we’ve seen at all four nomination events. The level of performance has really been increasing along the way and this weekend’s results show this.”
Elite Squad riders Grace Bowman (Grade 2) and Hannah Dodd (Grade 4) dominated their grades taking first place in all three tests. 22 year old Bowman is aiming to make her second Paralympic Games team while 20 year old Dodd is on track to make her first.
In Grade 1A, first time Paralympic Games hopeful Rob Oakley finished just in front of two time Paralympian Jane Pike to finish first in the Team, Individual and Freestyle tests.
Also searching for her first Games start is Joann Formosa (Grade 1B) who performed consistently across the weekend to also finish first in all three tests.
Competition was close between Grade 3 riders Sharon Jarvis and Chelsea Higgins who were equal first in the Team Test. Jarvis nudged out Higgins to win the Individual Championship Test with Higgins taking first place in the Individual Freestyle Test.
At the end of the nine month selection process selectors are confident of fielding a highly competitive team to compete in London.
“The World Equestrian Games was the last major international competition that our team contested and we’re hoping to improve upon the tenth place that we achieved there and it’s our goal for a top five finish at London,” said Battams.
Australia’s current Paralympic Games medal haul stands at two gold, one silver and five bronze.
Australia’s four member Paralympic Games team will be publicly announced in mid-June.
12 May 2012
Riders today performend their Individual Championship Test and there were excellent results across all grades. View full results here
Riders now turn their attention to tomorrow's Freestyle to Music Test which will be the final opportunity to put a good performance on the board.
Stay tuned to the AET website for results and highlights.
11 May 2012
Results from day one of the final Para-Equestrian Nomination event
The sun shone over Sydney and our riders on the first day of the final Para-Equestrian Nomination Event.
With Paralympic Games selection on the line, riders were out to show selectors they have the form to make the four member team that will represent Australia in London 110 days from now.
Team tests were the order of the day and full results can be viewed here.
Congratulations to all riders and stay tuned for more results.
10 May 2012
Para-Equestrian athletes ready for their final Paralympic Games nomination test
With just over 100 days to go before the start of the Paralympic Games, Australia's best Para-equestrian athletes will be out to show selectors they have the form to make the team that will represent Australia in London.
Australia’s Para-Equestrian team will be publicly announced in June and this weekend’s competition is the fourth and final nomination event for athletes to impress national selectors.
The event will mark the end of a nine month journey for our athletes who started the nomination process in September last year at an event in Tamworth. Nomination events were also held in December at the Melbourne CPEDI3* and more recently in April at the Australian Para-Equestrian Championships.
Riders must compete in at least three out of four nomination events to be eligible for the team that represents Australia in London.
Australia’s National Performance Director for Para-Equestrian, Julia Battams, has been working closely with the athletes to fine tune their preparations and says they’re looking forward to competing in the final nomination event.
“Our riders are really excited and looking forward to a full weekend of competition,” said Battams. “We’ve been working with the riders to prepare them for this moment and they’re focused and ready to take on the task.”
Australia’s Para-Equestrian athletes will take part in the fourth and final nomination event from Friday 11 – Sunday 13 May at the Sydney International Equestrian Centre at Horsley Park.
Australia will send a team of four Para-Equestrian riders to the Paralympic Games which are set to get underway 111 days from now. The team will be publicly announced mid-June.
Stay tuned to the EA website over the weekend for highlights and results.