The Helgstrand Dressage Freestyle competition at the FEI World Equestrian Games has been cancelled due to impending weather.
The Freestyle, which was originally scheduled for Sunday and then intended to move to Monday, will not be held because "the logistics of putting all necessary elements into place in time have proved insurmountable", according to the FEI statement.
The statement notes that this cancellation does not affect the qualification process for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, which was complete on Thursday. Germany, USA, Great Britain, Sweden, Netherlands and Spain qualified to compete at the Olympics. The release also notes that a separate note will be sent to ticket holders for the WEG.
“This was not an easy decision, but we have explored every option, including trying to reschedule the horse departures, and even looking at moving the competition into the indoor with a change of footing, but the logistics of making all this happen are just not possible”, Tryon 2018 Organising Committee President Michael Stone said.
“We know this is desperately disappointing for the 15 athletes who had qualified their horses for the Freestyle, and of course for all the spectators who had bought tickets, but the weather has simply left us with no choice. Horse welfare has to be the top priority and flying the horses out on the same day as competition doesn’t work, so sadly the decision to cancel the Freestyle had to be taken.”
“Although we are devastated that this decision has had to be taken, we’ve had two absolutely world-class competitions here at Tryon, including yesterday’s Grand Prix Special, and to see Germany’s Isabell Werth and Bella Rose taking double gold and Team USA claiming silver was a real treat for Dressage fans.”