FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ 2022
All female-squad leads The Netherlands to victory in Rotterdam, written by Catie Staszak
Led by a strong all-female squad, The Netherlands enjoyed a victory on home soil at CHIO Rotterdam (NED), winning the FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ of The Netherlands Saturday in an authoritative fashion.
Led by Chef d’Equipe Alex van Silfhout, the quartet of Lynne Maas (Eastpoint), Thamar Zweistra (Hexagon’s Ich Weiss), Emmelie Scholtens (Indian Rock) and Dinja Van Liere (Hermes) seized command in the Grand Prix Special and drew away in the Grand Prix Freestyle to finish on a winning total of 25 points. The United States and Sweden finished on equal terms with 39 points, but the Americans received the silver medal by way of a tiebreaker based on Grand Prix results.
“The ladies had the right focus at the right moment. They did a super job. They showed here that, when it has to be done, they can do it.”
Chef d’Equipe Alex van Silfhout (NED)
Van Liere and the exciting 10-year-old stallion Hermes delivered as team anchors, taking top honors in both the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special. Recording personal best scores in both the Grand Prix (79.739%) and Grand Prix Special (77.957%), the pair is tantalizingly close to the coveted 80 percent mark.
“Hermes felt great. He is in top form and just keeps getting better,” Van Liere said. “If I can just improve on some tiny things, we should be able to get there.”
In the Grand Prix Freestyle, The Netherlands dominated the podium to clinch the victory, with Scholtens and Zweistra finishing second and third, respectively. Both competing with 9-year-olds, the future for this squad appears incredibly bright, but there was even more to celebrate for Scholtens, who delivered a baby girl less than five months ago.
“I couldn’t wait: It’s fantastic to be able to compete in shows again,” she said. “Indian Rock enjoyed having all the spectators. Before, he competed in stallion shows, so he’s used to people clapping and the atmosphere. He was very relaxed tonight.”
Sweden continues to lead the FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ standings with 26 points. Belgium sits second (17 points), with The Netherlands and France adjoint third (15).