Lyndal Oatley set to make her Olympic Games debut
Lyndal Oatley's dream of representing Australia at an Olympic Games has been a 12 year work in progress and after a succession of strong performances at recent Australian team nomination events the 32 year old Dressage rider is on the verge of realising her long held ambition.
Lyndal and her ride, the 11 year old bay stallion Sandro Boy, are the highest placed Australian combination at the end of the two round nomination process which will see them automatically nominated* to the AOC for a position on the three member Dressage team.
The team’s remaining two members will be chosen by national selectors over the coming days.
This is not the first time that an Oatley has been nominated to an Australian Dressage team. Lyndal’s cousin Kristy, who is also contesting team selection, is already a two time Olympian having represented Australia at the Sydney 2000 and Beijing 2008 Olympics.
Lyndal started her Olympic journey after watching Kristy compete at the 2000 Olympic Games and she couldn’t be happier about her nomination to the team and the chance to ride into the Greenwich Park arena in London.
“This is a fabulous dream come true and I am one happy girl. It has been a long journey to get to this point and I am thrilled to be going to my first Olympic Games,” she said.
Lyndal and Sandro Boy were cool under pressure in last night’s CDI3* Grand Prix at Compiegne, France. The combination scored 70.894% which saw them finish in fourth position overall.
“I’m so happy with his (Sandro Boy) consistency and his performance, he performs so well under pressure and he tries with every step, he’s got a great attitude and I’m thrilled with how we performed today,” Lyndal said.
“I’m excited that we’ll get the opportunity to compete in London,” she added.
Equestrian Australia’s High Performance Manager Brett Mace said the London bound Australian Dressage team is shaping up to be a smart outfit.
“Our riders showed a lot of promise today particularly in the way they handled the pressure. Competing for a position on an Olympic Games team is an intense situation to be faced with and our riders handled it well which is a really positive thing to see leading into London,” said Mace
“The overall performance by all of our riders was very high and this is evident when we look at the leaderboard and see three riders in the top eight,” he added.
Joining Lyndal in the top eight was her cousin Kristy and Clive (68.234%) and triple Olympian Mary Hanna and Sancette (68.234%), with experience making all the difference for both riders in last night’s all important nomination event.
Six combinations will be in action again in tomorrow’s (tonight – Australian local time) Grand Prix Special which will commence at 7pm AEST. Kristy Oatley and Mary Hanna will also start in the Grand Prix Freestyle which will get underway at 2:30pm Sunday AEST.
Following this, Australian selectors will meet to decide which combinations will fill the remaining two positions on the team which will represent Australia in London.
Final results from the Compiegne CDI3* Grand Prix
Lyndal Oatley Sandro Boy 70.894% 4th
Mary Hanna Sancette 68.638% 7th
Kristy Oatley Clive 68.234% 8th
Rozzie Ryan GV Bullwinkle 67.851% 9th
Kristy Oatley Ronan 2 67.490% 12th
Brett Parbery Lord of Loxley 67.106% 13th
Hayley BeresfordBelissimo NRW 66.085% 14th
Mary Hanna Umbro 65.787% 21st
Chantal Wigan Ferero 64.915% 25th
*The nomination is subject to Sandro Boy passing a veterinary check which will take place on Monday morning local time.
Dressage riders gear up for final nomination event
31 May 2012
We are just days away from knowing which combinations will comprise Australia's Dressage team at the 2012 London Olympic Games but before the team is revealed one final challenge stands in the way.
The second and final Dressage nomination event is taking place this weekend and riders have assembled in France to compete in the Compiegne CDI3*
A good result this weekend could put riders on the path to London and Olympic glory.
Lyndal Oatley is hoping she and her horse Sandro Boy, aptly nicknamed Storm Boy after they faced disastrous conditions at the first nomination event in Manheim (GER), fare better with the weather this weekend
“We have prepared well for this event and I am ready for whatever heads my way, although I would prefer better weather than in Mannheim,” Lyndal said. “I have checked the weather forecast and there is a chance of rain over the Grand Prix days so I’m hoping "Storm Boy" is not facing weather like last time but just in case I have extra gloves and a lot of towels and am off to find gumboots,” she added.
If Lyndal gets the call up from selectors, London will be her first Olympic Games.
“The feelings I have at the moment are exactly the same as they were leading up to Mannheim,” she said. “I feel anxious, excited but also focused on getting the job done. We all want one of the three places on the team and we know what we need to do to get there.”
With Dressage rider Rachael Sanna withdrawing from the event after veterinary advice sidelined her horse, the Bev and John Edwards owned Jaybee Alabaster, there are seven riders vying for three positions on the Dressage team.
Dressage combinations competing at Compiegne CDI3* 1 – 3 June 2012
Brett Parbery Lord of Loxley
Chantal Wigan Ferero
Hayley Beresford Belissimo NRW
Kristy Oatley Clive
Kristy Oatley Ronan 2
Lyndal Oatley Sandro Boy
Mary Hanna Sancette
Mary Hanna Umbro
Rozzie Ryan GV Bullwinkle
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for the latest results and updates. Full reports from each event will be available on the EA website.
Rozzie Ryan and GV Bullwinkle have scored 67.85. Following them into the arena is the final Aus combination to go, Mary Hanna and Sancette who score 68.61. Final placings to follow