NEWS > High Performance
Posted by Kirsty Pasto on 14/12/2022.
Merry Christmas from EA High Performance
Photo credit: Libby Law

Merry Christmas and Thank You from the EA High Performance Team

As we approach the end of 2022 we would like to take this opportunity to reflect on how remarkable this year has been for our team, and the tremendous effort delivered by our athletes and support teams. 

The High Performance Committee, formerly the High Performance Panel continues to oversee the EA High Performance Program offering sound guidance and strategic direction as our staff and management deliver a world-class Program. Following the organisations exit from Voluntary Administration the High Performance Panel has also continued to offer support to the EA CEO and EA Board. 

The FEI World Championships were the focus for our team in 2022, which ran under a new format replacing the FEI World Equestrian Games. This year the FEI World Championships were hosted across two venues in Herning (DEN) and Pratoni (ITA). Our cohort continued to operate as a strong cohesive team, supporting each of our athletes in the disciplines of Dressage, Driving, Eventing, Jumping, Para-dressage and Vaulting despite the geographical split.

Once again Boyd Exell proved that he remains in a league of his own winning a historic 6th individual FEI Driving World Championship Four-in-Hand title, his unbroken reign intact after his first gold 12 years ago in Lexington (USA).  

With two personal best results, the Australian Dressage team gave an impressive performance placing eighth out of the 19 nations competing at the World Championships. As the highest-ranking country in Group G the performance of our Dressage Team earned Australia a quota place for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. 

Despite admirable performances by athletes in the Eventing, Jumping and Para-dressage competition Australia did not secure quota places for Paris 2024 at the World Championships. Many of our Team members were representing Australia for the first time on the world stage at Championship level and we are proud of the conduct and sportsmanship they displayed. Securing Australia's quota place for each of the remaining Olympic and Paralympic disciplines will be our key objective in 2023.

Our Program remains athlete centric and is holistic in its approach to assisting riders reach their goals. We are now consistently delivering the 'High Performance Competitive Edge Program', which provides off-horse educational content to emerging talent, Australia wide. This Program has been rolled out across the country and assists in strengthening the High Performance Pathway for athletes at State level as they progress throughout their career and make their way into the High Performance Program. In 2022 our identified athletes continued to be supported via access to world-class coaches, a rigorous and proactive veterinary program, athlete wellbeing specialists and detailed individual performance plans. 

This year we saw Nations Cup Teams compete in all Olympic and Paralympic disciplines with great success, including a silver medal in Drammen (NOR) and a bronze medal in British Columbia (CAN) for our Jumping teams. We have also supported an increasing number of Nations Cup Teams overseas this year and have seen the benefits of this experience reflected in our riders' progress and results. 

In June some of our athletes participated in the Oceania Eventing Championships, hosted by Melbourne International 3-Day Event. Australia fielded two Senior Teams and one Yong Rider Team, with the Australian Senior Green Team winning the CCI4*-L competition. It was wonderful to see the competition resume after being postponed in 2021 due to Covid-19, and we eagerly anticipate the Championships' continuation in New Zealand in 2023. 

The EA High Performance Program also provided an opportunity for a Year 10 work experience student to join our management team for the 2022 Oceania Championships. Investing in future talent is important not only on the horse but also for those who support our athletes behind the scenes. The exercise was very successful and we hope to provide future opportunities to other equestrians looking for a career in high-performance sport management. 

In lieu of a Youth Olympic Games, which have been postponed to 2026, the FEI Youth Equestrian Games were staged at CHIO Aachen earlier this year. Maleah Lang-McMahon represented Australia in the competition, which took place on borrowed horses. Maleah did an outstanding job throughout the Games, and showed extraordinary skill, maturity and horsemanship beyond her years finishing the individual final in 13th place. 

The EA High Performance Program continues to welcome the ongoing support of the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) who remains the sole financial contributor to the Program. All funding received is allocated in accordance with AIS policy requirements and we continue to utilise no EA membership funds in the delivery of our Program.

As we enter the next stage of our Olympic and Paralympic campaign we would like to thank our athletes, staff, and stakeholders for their unwavering confidence and trust in our Program 

We hope you all have a wonderful festive season and we look forward to sharing the journey of our team with you in 2023.


The EA High Performance Team 2022

  • Chris Webb, EA High Performance Director
  • Will Enzinger, EA High Performance Deputy Director / Pathways Manager
  • Kirsty Pasto, EA High Performance Media & Communications Manager
  • Stefanie Maraun, EA High Performance Para-Equestrian Manager
  • Nick Hunter, EA High Performance Para-Equestrian Lead
  • Todd Hinde, EA High Performance Jumping Manager
  • Brett Davey, EA High Performance Dressage Manager
  • Di Saunders, EA High Performance Sport Manager
  • Erin O'Neill, EA High Performance Sport Consultant / Eventing Manager
  • Alison Alcock, Performance Support & Athlete Wellbeing Manager
  • Amanda Ross, Athlete Wellbeing and Engagement Ambassador
  • Sharon Jarvis, EA High Performance Para-Equestrian Pathways Coordinator
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