The Danish newspaper Nordjyske broke the news that the Danish Equestrian Federation (DRF) has decided to exclude Andreas Helgstrand from Danish team selection until 1 January 2025.
In a special meeting in the evening of 28 November 2023, the DRF board decided to put a term on what they first announced "for the time being" on his exclusion from the Danish team and all team activities.
This means that Helgstrand will not be in the running for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. The Olympic format only allows three riders per team and the front-runners for a team spot are Nanna Skodborg Merrald, Carina Cassoe Kruth, Daniel Bachmann and Cathrine Dufour who is premiering her new ride, Mount St. John Freestyle, at the CDI Kronenberg (NED) this Friday.
"There will be no Olympics. It is completely out of the question," said acting chairman of the Danish Riding Association, Jakob Ravnsbo, who replaced Ulf Helgstrand due to conflict of interest. "This does not mean that he will return to the national team on 1 January 2025, but after that date we can start talking about whether he can come back and under what conditions. But in the next year or so it won't happen."
Helgstrand supplied Nordjyske with a statement: "I have always been proud to represent Denmark on the national team, and I had also looked forward to perhaps riding for Denmark at the Olympics. That is why I am of course very sorry about the Danish Riding Association's decision. I take note of the decision."
The DRF has not yet officially released this decision on their website.
Photo © Astrid Appels
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