Australia’s equestrian stars make bold announcement

To celebrate the one year to go mark, 16 of Australia’s top athletes appear in a special milestone poster which Australian equestrian fans are being encouraged to share with their friends via Facebook and Twitter.

Among the athletes who appear in the poster are Olympic gold medallists Andrew Hoy and Stuart Tinney, dual world driving champion Boyd Exell, Paralympic gold medallist Joann Formosa and Olympic silver medallist Shane Rose.

It’s been almost a year since Joann Formosa took her place atop the dais at the London 2012 Paralympic Games but the memories haven’t faded for the Victorian based rider.

“I remember London like it was yesterday and the journey since then has been unreal. Everyone has been really encouraging of me and I really hope I get another chance to represent my country.”

If Joann is selected to represent Australia at next year’s Games she’ll be aiming to double her London prize pool. 

“I want two gold medals next time,” she said. “London taught me that anything’s possible and now that I’ve tasted gold I know what I have to do to achieve it again. I’m in a much stronger position now than leading into London because I’ve had a chance to experience the competition and that’s really helped my confidence.”


   Athletes appear in the photo in the following order:

   Top L-R: Brett Parbery, James Patterson-Robinson, Chris Burton, Zac Singlehurst, Krystle Lander,
   Kevin McNab, Stuart Tinney, Jerri Butt

   Bottom L-R: Boyd Exell, Andrew Hoy, Nicole Blanks, Shane Rose, Lucy and Anna Betts, Lizzie Sobecki,
   Maree Tomkinson, Joann Formosa


Meanwhile Australia’s National Performance Director for Eventing, Prue Barrett says the eventing team’s preparations for next year’s Games are also on track.

At last week’s test event, team officials and some of Australia’s national squad riders were given a chance to view the facilities and experience the conditions that teams will encounter when the main event gets underway.

“Le Pin is a great venue and the facilities are looking great,” Prue said. “There are some things still to be finalised but everything appears to be progressing according to plan. A key observation for our team coming out of the event is the impact the cross country phase will have on the overall result. It’s going to be a long and hilly course that will really test the stamina and endurance of the horses. This has traditionally been the type of course that Australian combinations excel at.”

The Australian Equestrian Team’s online hub will contain the latest news and updates on Australian riders campaigning for the Games and we hear that on that hub there are five Normans – the official mascot of the 2014 World Equestrian Games - to give away!