Athletes from 54 nations will battle for first-week medals

Part of FEI press release

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Dressage also begins on 12 September and the big question here will be whether Germany’s Isabell Werth can add to the seven gold medals she has previously taken. There are three separate competitions: the Team event, the Grand Prix Special and the Grand Prix Freestyle. Werth won her first gold in the Special in 1994 on the road to becoming the most medalled athlete in the history of equestrian sport today. A total of 61 riders from 23 countries participated that year, and this time there will be 78 representing 31 nations. 

The fairytale success of Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and her brilliant gelding Valegro who, at the height of their career together, collected both the Special and Freestyle titles in Normandy (FRA) four years ago, has been largely responsible for a massive surge in the popularity of modern Dressage. The British rider will defend her titles, but this time around with the relatively untried Mount St John Freestyle while Werth has decided to swap her world number one ride, Weihegold, for her personal favourite Bella Rose whose march to the podium in Caen was abruptly halted by injury.

Germany claimed team gold for the 11th time in 2014, and holds the record for most medals, 22 in total, at the WEG. However the hosts from the USA are tipped to turn the tide, led by the world number three combination of Laura Graves and Verdades who have been showing fantastic recent form.

Definite Dressage entries here.