Mexican Team Selected for 2023 Central American and Caribbean Games

Wed, 05/31/2023 - 20:08
Mexican Carlos Maldonado on Frans at the 2023 Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI :: Photo © Astrid Appels

The Mexican dressage federation has announced the team that will represent Mexico at the 2023 Central American and Caribbean Games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, on 24 June to 3 July 2023. 

The Central American and Caribbean Games (CACG) are the oldest continuing regional games. The first Central American & Caribbean Games were held in 1926 in Mexico. Equestrian sports first made an appearance at these Games in 1935

El Salvador - Dominican Republic

The Central American and Caribbean Games are a multi-sport regional championship event, held quadrennial, typically in the middle year between Summer Olympics. The 24th edition of the games are taking place 23 June - 8 July 2023.

They were originally planned to take place in Panama City but on 24 July 2020 that their government withdraw as the hosts due to Covid. Organizer Centro Caribe Sports found an alternative in San Salvador, El Salvador as main host city. 

Due to infrastructure and schedule issues seven sports have been relocated to Santo Domingo, in Dominican Republic, including equestrian sport. 

Selection Woes

Quite a bit of confusion has been taking place in the lead-up to the CACGs with four different versions of technical manuals circulating amongst equestrian federations. 

The version in Spanish listed on the official CACG website was dated 12 December 2022; but there was also an English version dated 12 March 2023; a third  version dated 15 March 2023 (but identical to the 12 Dec Spanish one), and a fourth  which the FEI uploaded on 15  March 2023.  The FEI website version showed contradictions in key sections compared to the manual on the official San Salvador Games website.

Hybrid teams with small and big tour combinations are allowed and bonus points for the team result are given to the big tour horses. For instance, there is a 3% bonus in one manual and 1.5% in another. 

Furthermore, the Games will be open to any horse, except those that have finished in the first fifteen (15) places in a Championship or Games at Intermediate II level, or in Olympics, or won one of the first three (3) places in an Intermediate II Championship or higher in a CDI3*/CDI4*/CDI5* or CDI0* prior to the date of Nominal Entry. This rule does not apply if the horse has been owned by another rider. This means that some of these Central American riders are not allowed to take their top horse to Santo Domingo.

After communication with key players of the CACG, the FEI stands by the current version of the Technical Handbook published on the FEI Website (V6 version), as all previous versions "include(s) many incorrect provisions not in accordance with the FEI Dressage Rules."

Countries seemingly have been selecting its combinations based on the first version of the manual on the official website. 

Mexican Team

At this point in the process riders from eight countries have been declared, but Mexico is the first to announce its definite team as title defenders. 

The Mexican team was selected based on three qualifiers held this spring as well as scores abroad. Their team consists of:

  • Santiago Ortiz  - Dagasus, a 15-year old Dutch warmblood by Painted Black x. Esteban
  • Enrique Palacios  -  Deinhard, a 10-year old Hanoverian by Don Frederico x Londonderry
  • Carlos Maldonado  -  Frans, a 13-year old Dutch warmblood by Voice x Lancet
  • Antonio Rivera  -  Fite, a 15-year old Hanoverian by Laureano x Harvard

The reserve rider is José Luis Padilla with the 9-year old Friesian Twan van Plexat (by Sake 449 x Beart 411).

Photo © Astrid Appels

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