Adding to this year’s spectacular Show will be a world-class selection of riders contesting the FEI World Cup™ Dressage Grand Prix and Freestyle to Music, supported by Horse & Hound, taking place on the Tuesday 12 and Wednesday 13 December respectively.
Contending for the title and making a welcomed first appearance at the Show, Swedish Olympian and current leader of the FEI World CupTM Western League, Patrik Kittel. Kittel will be competing aboard Delaunay Old, who together took team bronze at the 2017 European Championships in Gothenburg.
Judy Reynolds (Vancouver K) is another who will be gunning for glory. Certain to give Reynolds a run for her money is renowned Dutch rider, Edward Gal (Glock’s Zonik), triple gold medallist at the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games™, the first rider to claim all three available medals.
Making her Olympia debut will be Madeleine Witte-Vrees riding the Dutch-bred stallion Cennin. Adding to the Dutch challenge and returning to Olympia for the third time will be Katja Gevers with Thriller, a combination that are into their seventh season of Grand Prix.
Flying the flag for the home-side will be 2017 British Dressage National Champion Hayley Watson-Greaves (Rubin’s Nite), Emile Faurie (Delatio), Gareth Hughes (Don Carissimo) and Lara Butler (Rubin Al Asad). The strong home contingent also includes four-time British Olympian Richard Davison (Bubblingh).
The UK’s largest indoor horse show is also set to welcome top international four-in-hand drivers for the FEI World Cup™ Driving leg, presented by Dodson & Horrell.
Reigning World Champion, both indoors and out, Boyd Exell, returns to compete with a wild card. With seven FEI World Cup™ titles to his name, including the 2016 and 2017 seasons, he is a regular contender and winner at the prestigious Show. Challenging Exell, and representing the home team, will be the notorious Dan Naprous, who will be wowing crowds with his supreme pace and agility.
Joining Naprous will be Ijsbrand Chardon, the most experienced, and multi-medalled of all the drivers in the starting line-up, having been at the top of the sport since the 1980s. Fellow countryman, Koos de Ronde, who has shared the World and European Championship team gold medal winning rostrums with Chardon on eight separate occasions, will be giving Chardon a run for his money, having competed at the Show each year since the competition began.