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The FEI Federation Equestre Internationale News

3 October 2001

- FEI Open European Endurance Championship
- FEI/Gandini World Jumping Riders Rankings
- FEI/BCM World Dressage Riders Rankings
- Bolivarian Games
- WEG Test Event
- Samsung Nations Cup

- Top Driver Awards
- Open Forum Eventing
- In Memoriam


The 2001 FEI Open European Endurance Championships were held in the beautiful town of Castiglione del Lago near Perugia (ITA) on 29 September. Eighty-two competitors lined up at the start at 5.30 a.m. on Saturday and eight hours and twenty minutes later, Sheik Rashid bin Mohd Al Maktoum (UAE) riding the new star Provocative, crossed the line to win the Open Gold medal. He was closely followed by his brother Sheik Hamden bin Mohd Al Maktoum (UAE) on Dynamik, who took the silver and then the home favourite Fausto Fiorucci (ITA) on Faris Jabar to take the Bronze Open medal and the European Gold. The Open team gold went to the UAE thanks to the combined skills of the Gold and Silver medallists and their father Sheik Mohd bin Rashid Al Maktoum on the incredible Nelson, who placed 11th in the individual competition. This was Nelson’s 5th Championship completion and his 3rd Gold medal. Italy took the Silver Open and the European Gold followed by Portugal and Germany.

The Silver in the European section went to Marc Comas of Spain riding Ombra and the Bronze to Switzerland’s Hansjorg Bendiner riding Kamaya.

This was without doubt one of the best Endurance events ever held; the conditions were perfect with pleasant temperatures and excellent going. The organisers provided a perfect Vet gate with enough space for all competitors. The layout and marking of the courses reached new levels, which enabled the horses to maintain good speed. The completion rate reached 50% with all the horses in a great condition following the event.

For the first time an FEI Endurance event enjoyed live television coverage and the last 10 km were broadcast at prime time, reaching over 6 million viewers nationwide. With riders from as far away as Malaysia, Australia and Brazil, the 2001 FEI Open European Endurance Championships was a truly universal event and left both spectators and competitors looking forward to next year’s World Equestrian Games.

Olympic points loose 25% value, To 10 shaken up

Ludger Beerbaum firmly keeps his position as leader of the FEI/Gandini World Jumping Rankings. This month, the points awarded at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney lost 25% of their value, which caused some significant variation in the Top Ten. The Olympic Champion Jeroen Dubbeldam (NED) was kicked off the Top Ten and went down from 10th to 15th place.

Ludo Pilippaerts (BEL), stole the runner-up spot from Willi Melliger (SUI), thanks to his points awarded at the Nations Cup Final in Madrid, where he proudly received the trophy of the Samsung Nations Cup Leading Rider. He also earned about 150 points in CSIO Spruce Meadows (CAN) and in CSI-A Aach (GER). Not all Belgian riders were so fortunate. Fellow countryman Jos Lansink dropped from the Top Ten and is now 11th.

Rolf Göran Bengtsson (SWE) confirmed his good progression by moving from 12th to 9th place.

The first lady rider is now Margie Godstein-Engle (USA) at 20th place, who is also the best North American rider.

The next FEI/Gandini World Jumping Riders will be published the first week of November. All riders will have to earn as many points as possible until 18 November, the set date for the selection of the 10 riders who will participate in the first FEI/Gandini Top Ten World Final on 8 December 2001 in Geneva (SUI).

Complete rankings on


Ulla Salzgeber (GER) leads the rankings for the 8th consecutive month with an unchanged score of 79.639. But there are changes in the immediate runners-up: Isabell Werth (GER) gained one place and is now 2nd, followed by Nadine Capellmann (GER) who went up one place.

The Olympic champion Anky van Grunsven (NED) dropped down from 2nd to 5th place.

As in Jumping, one year has passed since the Olympic Games: the Olympic scores, that could be taken into account twice the first year – if better than the other scores – are only counted once the second year, until the next World Championship, i.e. 2002 World Equestrian Games, when they will be dropped.

complete rankings on


The Bolivarian Games were organized from 12 to 16 September in a spectacular location surrounded by permanent snow-topped mountains, 30 minutes from Quito, the capital of Ecuador.

It was the first time that Eventing was included in the programme of the Bolivarian Games. The “Escuela de Equitación” prepared excellent facilities and a very good one-star cross country course. New roads and tracks, a steeple-chase built around a polo field and beautiful scenery for the cross country attracted more than a thousand spectators to watch riders from Peru, Venezuela and Ecuador. The team gold surprisingly went to Venezuela, who was not the favourite team, as they had to leave their best horse at home, and furthermore had to replace one rider who had an appendicitis attack the day before the Dressage test. The Individual medals were all won by Ecuadorian riders. The gold went to Alejandro Luna with Mr Daniels.

Four countries participated in the Jumping competitions of the Bolivarian Games. Colombia won the Team title followed by Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela. The Colombian riders took the individual medals, the gold medal being awarded to Rodrigo Diaz on Amoante.

Colombia also won the Team Dressage competition with a strong team which finished with an average 73.4 % score. The silver medal went to the home team and the bronze to Venezuela. Tatiana Londoño (COL) and Dancing were crowned individual champions with 75% followed by Carmen Franco (COL) / China Town and Diana Rey (COL) / Rambo Rey.


Last weekend (28-30 September) Jerez de la Frontera (ESP) hosted the second scheduled Test Event for next year's World Equestrian Games. After the International driving competition that was successfully run on the second week of September, WEG 2002 Organizing Committee staged an International Three Day Event (CCI**).

The competition had the aim of testing facilities and tuning the organizing team for next year, therefore it represented an ideal occasion for delegations from all over the world to arrive in THE South of Spain to familiarize with the competition venues where, in exactly one year, the biggest ever equestrian event (seven world titles awarded in the same contest at the same time) will take place.

Eighteen riders in total (from Australia, France and Spain) competed in the CCI** which saw the final victory of Didier Dhennin, member of the French cavalry troup 'Cadre Noir', riding his eight year old mare Fine Fleur V Ene HN. In second place, also for France, Eddy Sans with Ecile, followed by the Australian combination Sam Griffith and In the Grove (who led after dressage).

While the four-in-hand driving test two weeks ago suffered from very high temperatures and bone dry conditions, the eventers found the opposite. On cross-country day water bucketing down for hours, though, didn't affect the ground prepared by course designer Mike Tucker and his Spanish-british crew. Twelve months from now the newly sown gras will provide even more hold and organizers are confident that they have seen the worst.

Safety of the horses is a paramount issue in Eventing and the Test Event was the ideal occasion also to verify all safety measures which need to be taken for next year. The competition at Jerez was also a welcome opportunity for the FEI- Veterinary Manager Frits Sluyter to gather 55 veterinarians, mostly from Spain, to discuss veterinary standards and FEI-regulations. A main focus was the term "fitness to compete" which is often interpreted differently. The forum used video tapes from the first and the last inspection to compare changes in movement, if any.

A sunny day concluded the event and many people from Jerez came to Chapin (the main competition venue) to watch the final phase of the event, the jumping test. A nice atmosphere, smiling faces and the awareness that preparations for WEG 2002 are well in shape accompanied the final day where riders, horses, officials, foreign delegates were cheered by FINO, WEG's official mascot, who took the opportunity to make his joyful appearance.

Belgium Gets the Time Right in Zagreb

The Belgian team came out on top in a marathon round of the Samsung Nations Cup series in Zagreb, Croatia on 28 September but it was close-fought affair with Italy beaten only by the clock when sharing the same final score but just under five seconds slower.

A total of 12 teams lined out for this third leg of the 2001/2001 league which began with victory for the reigning league champions, Germany, in Linz, Austria two weeks ago before Hungary took the honours in Bucharest, and the Germans looked set for victory once again when leading on a zero score after the first round today.

Andrea Bracci (Banjo d'Elle) had been the only member of the Italian team to return a clear at his first attempt as the rest all had a single fence down but Bracci sat it out in round two as Paolo Martinelli (Gasparone) improved to leave all the fences intact and when Valerio Sozzi (Gisowatt Pilot High Flight) did likewise Italy had only the four picked up by Filippo Rizzi (Easy Jumper) to add, leaving them on a 12-fault total.

This might have been good enough to seal victory but for the speed of the Belgian second-round attack and Marc Boes, who was competing in his 14th Nations Cup was the hero of the day when his fast run with Tre Jolie clinched it for his side. He complimented the riding of 25 year old Filip Lacus who provided the first-round discount score with eight faults from Quenoz do la Petite Bilanda and Wim Smet, who were both riding their first Nations Cup for Belgium. Bert Prouve, a more experienced rider, completed the Belgian team.

This result moves Belgium up to a close-second behind Germany at the top of the Samsung Nations Cup leaderboard at this early stage of the 2001/2001 series. Germany are on 13 points with Belgium on 12, Switzerland on 8 and Holland on 7 while the Hungarians, winners at Bucharest the previous weekend, share fifth spot with Italy and Poland.

With the Samsung 2000/2001 World Final taking place in Madrid the same weekend, just four teams, the minimal number allowed under international rules, lined out in Bucharest where Hungary held sway by a considerable margin.

A double-clear from Joszef Turi (Dani) rounded up a solid Hungarian performance as faultless second rounds from Atilla Szask (Perseo) and Gabor Grudner (Lugisaor) added nothing to the first-round tally of five which included the single mistake made by Attila Scocz (Denever), and the Polish squad of Lukasz Jonczyk (Ocean T) Monika Przysada (Oxer) and Sladomir Uchwart (Metz-Sport Agresja) were a full 25 faults behind in second place while Bulgaria slotted into third ahead of Romania in fourth.

The next leg of the Samsung Nations Cup takes place in Athens, Greece next Friday and then moves across the Atlantic to Washington, USA at the end of the October and to Toronto, Canada and Buenos Aires in Argentina in November before the series takes its annual break.

Samsung Nations Cup League 2001/2002 after Round 3 in Zagreb, Croatia:
1, Germany 13 points; 2, Belgium 12 points; 3, Switzerland 8 points; 4, Holland 7 points; 5, Italy, Hungary and Poland 5 points.

results and standings on


Michael Freund (GER) is the winner of the FEI/Finn Caspersen Four-in Hand Top Driver Award 2001 with a total of 44 points. The Award was created in 1991. Freund already received it in 1992. The Swiss driver Werner Ulrich placed second with 41 points, followed by the three times winner Tomas Eriksson (SWE) with 40 points. Sixty-one drivers participated in the 2001 Four-in-Hand Top Driver Award and 44 obtained points in the six events counting for the overall classification, which ended with CAI Gladstone, N.J. (USA) on 23 September.

The Swedish driver Yngve Käll is the winner of the second FEI/Van der Wiel Harness Pairs Top Driver Award 2001. After his victory in Åstorp (SWE) in June and two 8th places in Beekbergen (NED) and Riesenbeck (GER), he finished on top of the standings with 38 points. Boyd Exell (AUS) was in the lead before the World Championships in Riesenbeck following his victory in Saumur (FRA) and his second place in Beekbergen. Further to a mistake in the final cones course in Riesenbeck, he dropped down to the 2nd place in the Top Driver Award with 37 points. Riny Rutjens, winner of the first Van der Wiel Award, is 3rd with a total of 33 points, thanks to his win in Beekbergen and his 4th place in Riesenbeck. Yngve Kåll will receive a sculpture donated by the sponsor of the Award the harness-maker and international pair driver Henk Van der Wiel from Achel (BEL).

Germany’s Dagmar Tödter is the winner of the first FEI/Kühnle Singles Top Driver Award. Thanks to excellent results in Dillenburg (2nd place) and Nebanice (1st place), she scored 35 points and ended ahead of André Herman (BEL) (28 points) and 1998 World Champion Arja Mikkonen (20 points), who won the event in Dillenburg.

Top Drivers Awards complete standings on

FEI Eventing Open Forum will take place in Pau (FRA) on Thursday 11 October (17h00-18h00) following the Dressage test of the European Eventing Championship.


John E. Wylie, a member of the FEI Bureau for 16 years and its Vice-President for four years, died recently after a short illness. He was 81 years old.

John Wylie, the son of an Irish judge, was elected to the FEI Bureau in 1963 and re-elected for three additional four-year terms until 1979. From 1975 to 1979 he served as FEI Vice-President.

Sallie Wheeler, who was instrumental in bringing the CSIO New York, the United States most prestigious horse show, back to Madison Square Garden, died on 21 September at her home in Keswick, Virginia, at the age of 70.

Sallie Wheeler was the daughter of Adolphus Busch III who was, together with his brother August Jr., the owner of the Anheuser-Busch brewery in St. Louis. She began to ride competitively early and made her first National Horse Show appearance in Madison Square Garden in 1946 when 15. In 1965 she married Kenneth Wheeler, a professional horse trainer and together they raised and trained hundreds of champion horses and participated in shows around the country. Each year they won 200 to 300 blue ribbons for a victory in a USA Equestrian (formerly AHSA) approved competition. In 1987 AHSA named Mrs Wheeler its Horsewoman of the Year.

Two years later the National Horse Show moved from Madison Square Garden – where it had been a social mainstay since 1883 – to Meadowlands. Mrs Wheeler believed the NHS to be synonymous with Madison Square Garden and she spearheaded the efforts to bring the show back to the Garden. She succeeded in 1996. To herald its homecoming, Seventh Avenue was closed to allow a parade of the Budweiser Clydesdales.


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