Tokyo 2020 Dressage Team Final: Team GB take Bronze and make history
In the Tokyo 2020 Dressage Team Final, Team GB took bronze and made history all at once.
Carl Hester, Charlotte Dujardin, and Lottie Fry took the first equestrian medal for Team GB at the Dressage Team Final today (27 July), walking away with bronze.
Carl was the first rider inside the boards, with his 12-year-old, En Vogue. Only riding the gelding for the past 12 months and competing at just four International Grand Prix’s together before the Olympics, Carl and En Vogue shone in the Olympics lights, heading the team for a great start. Scoring 78.344% (2577.5 points) the duo executed their test to an orchestral version of Easy Lover by Phil Collins beautifully. Topping the scores at the time, the partnership set the standard for the rest of the field.
Lottie Fry followed closely behind Carl’s performance, making her debut Olympic team final appearance with Team GB dressage. Entering with 12-year-old stallion, Everdale, the pair quickly got the ball rolling. Scoring a respectable 76.854% (2528.5 points) Lottie managed an early error extremely well. A break into canter from extended trot, cost her precious points. However, recovering quickly her marks quickly shot up and were dotted with 9’s from judges.
Charlotte Dujardin was the final rider to take to the stage for Team GB. A test filled with quality work, Charlotte shone with her chestnut gelding, Gio, taking part in his first Olympics. Performing impeccably under the heat of the Olympic lights, a small stutter from passage to piaffe cost the duo considerable marks. At Gio’s fifth ever international Grand Prix competition, one of those being just days ago at the Tokyo Olympics, the partnership scored 79.544% (2617.0 points).
Not only did Charlotte achieve an incredible feat with the inexperience horse, she also managed to make British history. Winning the bronze at Tokyo, Charlotte Dujardin is now officially Britain’s most decorated female Olympian. Taking her Olympic medal tally to five, Charlotte is level with Dame Katherine Grainger.
Elated after the competition, Charlotte posted a heart warming tribute to her experience so far at the Games;
Incredible arena, amazing teammates and a horse who tried his absolute best for me.”“A bronze medal today is laced in gold for me as Pumpkin (Gio) is still a horse so new to the higher levels. He has the biggest heart and it is such a privilege to ride him. I’m lost for words.”“A huge congratulations also to Carl and Vogue who set the arena alight tonight. What a partnership they have become. And to Lottie, your skill and composure is incredible and for you to be on a team with Carl as your mum once was… is magical and you made your Olympic debut a starry one! Also to Gareth Hughes; you are every bit a part of this team win and I am so grateful to have come out to Tokyo with all of you to share this experience.”“To Alan, Lucy, Ian Cast, sponsors, our supporting team here and at home; thank you for everything. You make this possible for us. I could go on with a thousand thank yous but it’s late here and tomorrow we go again.”
Team GB finished on a final score of 7723.0 points, falling just 24 point behind Team USA to take the bronze. America’s Sabine Schut-Kery with ride, Sanceo, put Britain under enormous pressure with her score of 81.596%, clinching the silver medal for the nation.
However, Team Germany took a considerable lead and are now the ones to beat with a team score of 8178.0 points. The German trio of Isabell Werth, Dorothee Schneider and Jessica von Bredow-Werndl were on top form, taking the sizeable lead early with a breath-taking ride by Werth.
The individual final take place tomorrow (28 July), starring all three Team GB athletes. Find out how to view the Individual Dressage Final, here.
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Reporting on equestrian news stories, Abby also produces a variety of engaging content for the magazine.