In what has been a record-smashing year for the sport, EquiRatings is delving deeper into our numbers to unearth the most impressive statistics of 2016. First up, we’re taking a look at the lowest international dressage scores.
It should come as no surprise that Germany dominates the top 10, taking eight of the slots and the lowest score of the year. One combination appears on the list twice, while one CCI4* performance made the cut and female riders swept the top five. There’s plenty to sink our teeth into here, so let’s count it down.
30.6 – Michael Jung and fischerIncantas (GER) – Radolfzell CIC*
With a win in the 6-year-old Championships last year at Le Lion d’Angers, Michael Jung and fischerIncantas were already firmly on our radar when they started the 2016 season. This duo didn’t disappoint, delivering a personal best of 30.6 at Radolfzell CIC* in April and going on to finish on that score to take the win. Remember this name!
30.2 – Chris Burton and Nobilis 18 (AUS) – Burghley CCI4*
The only CCI4* score in the top 10 for the year also obliterated the previous best at Burghley, and did we mention that 30.2 is the best CCI4* dressage score ever recorded on British soil? Adding just a handful of time on cross country preserved enough of a margin to allow Chris and Nobilis 18 to drop four poles in show jumping and still clinch the Burghley win on 49.4.
29.8 – Sandra Auffarth and Opgun Louvo (GER) – Wiesbaden CIC3*
We’d expect to see the reigning World Champions on this list, and Sandra Auffarth and Opgun Louvo held to that standard. While they scored well off their dressage average in Rio, they dazzled at Wiesbaden in May and ultimately delivered their best first-phase performance of the year. They withdrew after scoring 29.8, but we can’t forget the magic of that test.
29.2 – Julia Krajewski and Chipmunk FRH (GER) – Wiesbaden CIC3*
While eventing fans will be more familiar with Julia’s Rio Olympic mount Samourai du Thot, it’s her younger mount Chipmunk FRH that we’ve been tracking at HQ. He delivered two of the best dressage performances of the year, with a 29.2 at Wiesbaden CIC3* setting Julia up to take second place to none other than Ingrid Klimke and her own Rio mount Horseware Hale Bob, who appear later on this list.
29.1 – Michael Jung and La Biosthetique Sam FBW (GER) – Kreuth CIC2*
We’ve already seen Michael’s name once on this list, and it’s only fitting that he appears again with La Biosthetique Sam FBW, with whom he clinched back-to-back gold medals in Rio, becoming just the third pair in history to do so. Michael and Sam scored 29.1 in the CIC2* at Kreuth as their final prep run for Badminton, which they went on to win on 34.4. Just another day in the office for Ze Terminator.
28.9 – Julia Mestern and Grand Prix Iwest (GER) – Bad Segeberg CIC*
We see Julie Mestern compete most often at the CIC* level internationally, and that’s exactly where she dominated in dressage this year. A personal best of 28.9 at Bad Segeberg CIC* in October made her impossible to catch with Grand Prix Iwest, adding just 4 cross country time penalties to that score to go on to win.
28.5 – Alex Postolowsky and All Or Nothing (GBR) – Aske CIC*
Chris Burton managed to sneak into this top 10 list for Australia, and one other rider broke up Germany’s stronghold on 2016’s top dressage performances in Great Britain’s Alex Postolowsky. Alex and All Or Nothing scored 28.5 in the CIC* at Aske to crack the top five dressage scores of the year — no small feat.
27.8 – Julia Krajewski and Chipmunk FRH (GER) – Kreuth CIC2*
This isn’t déjà vu! It’s Julia and Chipmunk FRH appearing once again in this top 10 list — the only horse-and-rider combination to appear twice in the top 10 for 2016. While their score of 29.2 in the CIC3* at Weisbaden was impressive, Julie and Chipmunk managed to dig deeper at Kreuth, scoring 27.8 in the CIC2* and ultimately going on to finish in first place.
27.3 – Ingrid Klimke and Horseware Hale Bob (GER) – Wiesbaden CIC3*
We strive to #BeLikeIngrid at EquiRatings HQ, and there’s no question that Ingrid is consistently dominant in the dressage. Like many of the riders gunning for the German Olympic team, Ingrid and Hale Bob’s path to Rio took them to Wiesbaden, where they scored 27.3 in dressage to set them up for the win. Goals, anyone?
24.2 – Bettina Hoy and Seigneur Medicott (GER) – Luhmühlen CIC2*
If you look back at the other top dressage performances of 2016, the previous marks are all separated by less than 1 point. That makes Bettina Hoy and Seigneur Medicott’s score of 24.2 at Luhmühlen all the more impressive, as they topped the next best score on our leaderboard by more than 3 points. They finished on 24.2 to take the CIC2* win at Luhmühlen and later went on to win at Blenheim in the fall.
Stay tuned to EquiRatings as we continue to analyze the top trends and statistics from 2016.