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OUTSTANDING LINE-UP AS OLYMPIA CLOSE TO SELL OUT

An exceptional line-up of equestrian athletes are set to compete at this year’s Olympia, The London International Horse Show which takes place on 16-22 December, including the three FEI World No. 1s in Dressage, Show Jumping and Carriage Driving.

Charlotte Dujardin riding Valegro winners at last year Olympia (photo © Kit Houghton/Hpower).

The definite entries, which were published today, reveal Dressage supremo Charlotte Dujardin, Show Jumping sensation Scott Brash and Australian Driving legend, Boyd Exell will head the incredible quality of competitors during the week-long event. In addition, seven out of the Top 10 Longines FEI World Ranked Show Jumpers will also compete at London’s premier horse show.

This year, organisers have seen the fastest ever sale of tickets, with 11 out of the 12 performances sold out before the doors even open on Tuesday 16 December.

Show Director Simon Brooks-Ward said: “As well as maintaining the Olympia tradition of staging family entertainment in the build-up to Christmas, our challenge has always been to put on world class sport, and the fact that we now stage three FEI World Cups™ clearly shows how far Olympia has developed over the years. When you add three World No. 1 competitors to this mix – Charlotte Dujardin, Scott Brash and Boyd Exell – it provides a compelling proposition”.

Charlotte Dujardin will compete Valegro in front of a UK audience for the first time this year in the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Leg supported by Horse & Hound which takes place on the first and second day of Olympia. Dujardin has had a momentous year since smashing the world record in freestyle at last year’s Olympia, by adding the FEI World Cup™ Finals and the World Championship titles to her already impressive collection of achievements. She was recently announced on the shortlist for BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

Joining Dujardin at Olympia will be her mentor and GBR team mate Carl Hester who will be riding 10-year-old gelding, Nip Tuck on whom he won Team Silver at the World Equestrian Games. Completing the British line-up are Spencer Wilton, making his Olympia debut with his exciting new ride Numberto, Nikki Crisp with her own mare Pasoa and Hannah Biggs with stallion Weltzin.

Dutch riders, Edward Gal and Danielle Heijkoop, who were placed second and third respectively behind Dujardin last year are confirmed to compete again this year with the same horses, Glock’s Undercover and Kingsley Siro N.O.P.

There are several exciting riders making their Olympia debuts this year. These include Germany’s Jessica von Bredow-Werndl, who was star of Junior and Young riders and twice German Champion. The 28-year-old broke into the highest senior level competition with the stallion who she rides at Olympia, Unee BB. The pair were seventh in the FEI World Cup Final in April and have since won their last three competitions. Fellow German, Sonke Rothenberger is also confirmed to compete at Olympia for the first time. The 20-year-old business student won Team Gold at the European Young Riders and was seventh in his World Cup debut in Odense this year. Completing the German line-up is Dorothee Schneider, who was part of the German team to take Team Silver at London 2012. Schneider makes her Olympia debut on Silvano 71. Spain’s Morgan Barbanςon Mestre,  aged 22, will make his first Olympia appearance with Anky van Grunsven former ride, Painted Black. The pair were placed 10th at the FEI World Cup Finals and 15th at the World Equestrian Games this year.