Horse Campline’s 2021 CDI Abrantes: Tokyo MER Meeting Point for Torres and Oliva

Tue, 04/27/2021 - 10:30
2021 CDI Abrantes
Rodrigo Torres and Fogoso Horse Campline at the 2021 CDI Abrantes :: Photo © Rui Pedro Godinho

Spaniard Jose Antonio Garcia Mena and Portuguese Rodrigo Torres swept the board in the two big tour classes hosted at the 2021 CDI Horse Campline Abrantes on 24 - 25 April 2021.

Especially for Rodrigo Torres the competition re-confirmed his horse Fogoso Horse Campline as team potential with their course clearly set for the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games. Joao Victor Oliva and Escorial Horse Campline achieved their second MER, validating their qualification and place as hot favourites for the Brazilian individual spot in Tokyo.

Horse Campline Steps In

Portuguese equestrian enterprise Horse Campline stepped in to host a new CDI in Abrantes, on the same dates as Alter, after no less than five CDIs had been cancelled in Portugal since the beginning of the year.

"The CDI Alter was cancelled shortly before the due date, so Horse Campline decided to grab the FEI qualification date and go forward with an international dressage event, as many Portuguese riders were eager to show at their first international of the year," said Maria Amaral, a spokesperson for the show organisation. "Horse Campline set up a successful event in just two weeks time, with the objective of giving riders the opportunity to obtain qualification scores for upcoming championships such as Olympic Games, Europeans, and World Championships."


CDI Abrantes with a lush green background
The CDI Horse Campline was held in Abrantes, an equestrian centre which has been host to international shows in previous years. As the Horse Campline headquarters are still under construction, the company opted to rent this venue with very few resident horses, facilitating the guarantee of compliance to all the EHV-1 FEI rules.

Horse Campline brought innovation to the show grounds, applying the new concept of rider-audience engagement, successfully tried out in northern Europe: riders were interviewed after the test and a live stream was offered, which generated over 3,000 viewers on Saturday.

The event was the first opportunity of 2021 for Portuguese riders to re-confirm or achieve their Minimum Eligibility Requirement (MER) scores in the lead-up to the summer's Olympic Games in Tokyo and European Dressage Championships in Hagen. The show further offered young horse classes in which riders could earn their qualifying scores for the 2021 World Young Horse Championships later in the year in Verden

MERs for Tokyo

With an all-level programme, the CDI had classes from young horses level to Grand Prix.

While the youth and small tour tests were filled with Portugues riders, the big tour brought some international flair to the show. The Jerez de la Frontera based Spanish team rider Jose Antonio Garcia Mena trailered in two horses, while the Portuguese Brazilian Olympian Joao Victor Marcari Oliva rode his first CDI of the year.

Joao Victor Oliva on Escorial Horse Campline
Garcia Mena had his international debut aboard the 11-year old Hanoverian Divina Royal (by Desperados), a chestnut mare he has been riding since 2018 and which he premiered at national Grand Prix level in February 2020. At the CDI Abrantes, he won the Grand Prix with 72.783%, but withdrew from the Special.

The Spaniard had Portuguese team rider Rodrigo Torres hot on his heels with Fogoso Horse Campline, an 11-year old licensed Lusitano stallion by Rico. The pair finished second in the Grand Prix with 72.652% and won the Grand Prix Special with 72.638%. They proved they are back in the game for national team selection for the 2021 Olympics, achieving the MER needed to be considered. The Lusitano showed off his talent for the collection movements and scored nines for piaffe. They aim for a peak performance this year and have been closely collaborating with national team trainer Kyra Kyrklund to achieve this goal. Torres and Fogoso will compete next at the CDIO Compiègne in France.

Brazilian Joao Victor Marcari Oliva and the popular 12-year old Lusitano breeding stallion Escorial Horse Campline (by Spartacus) returned to the international scene in Abrantes and immediately made a big statement as hot favourites for the one, individual Olympic spot Brazil can fill for Tokyo. The new combination finished fifth in the Grand Prix with 69.130% and were fourth in the Special with 67.936%. These results gained him the second MER, allowing him to be considered by the Brazilian National Federation for selection. Their plan is to travel to France as well, to continue their preparation at the CDI Compiègne next month.

Rain Check 

Torrential downpours of rain meddled with the Sunday afternoon schedule and resulted in three youth classes being cancelled. This, however, did not dampen the spirit of the riders who were happy to have been back in the arena with their competition outfit on.

Under 25 rider Martim Meneres made his senior Grand
Prix debut on his long-time partner Equador
"The Organising Committee in agreement with the Officials gave the riders the option to choose if they wanted to compete or not, and all of them decided not to ride because of the weather conditions." said Amaral. "It rained and stormed very strongly from lunchtime on. Although the weather did not collaborate on Sunday afternoon, we received very positive feedback on the show, which was very nice and encouraging."

Italian pony rider Lisa Bartz captured the trophy in the pony team test with Hemingway B, Portuguese children rider Briana Alexandra Vintila clocked her first CDI win aboard Diego, while junior Manuel Resina Antunes kicked off his second year at junior level with Jackpot do Penedo on winning form. At young riders level the experienced Portuguese Catarina Costa and Kut 'n Move topped the board in the team test.

At small tour level, Rita Ralao Duarte and Irao (by Rubi AR) made it a double victory, claiming the Prix St Georges with 67.382% and the Intermediaire I with 66.559%. Miguel Duarte Rico and the 13-year old Lusitano Imperador DR (by Rubi AR) swept the medium tour Intermediaire A on the horse's international debut. They scored 66.765%.

Taste for More

The Horse Campline company has developed an appetite for horse show organisation and is planning for more shows in the future.

Photos © Rui Pedro Godinho

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