The Canadian Para-Dressage Team officially joined the #RidetoTokyo after securing its qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, to be held Aug. 25-Sept. 6 in Japan.
“It is great that Canada has qualified a para-dressage team for the 2020 Paralympics,” said Equestrian Canada (EC) High Performance Director, James Hood. “The Games and venue in Japan will be an incredible opportunity for the visibility and growth of our sport. With the spot secured, our riders and horses can focus on their final preparations for team selection and then the Games themselves. Our goal is to always be improving, both individual and team scores, as well as from selection competitions to the Games.”
From Jan. 1, 2019, to Jan. 31, 2020, the Canadian Para-Dressage Team pulled out all the stops at FEI CPEDI 3* competitions across North America to earn the right to send a four-person team to Japan. After second place team finishes at the 2020 Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) 1 and AGDF 3 in Wellington, FL, Canada earned its Paralympic berth as the highest ranked team from the Americas not previously qualified on the FEI Paralympic Team Ranking List. Canada now joins 14 other nations on the quest for Paralympic gold.
“I am delighted for all the grooms, athletes, coaches, owners and support staff that their hard work, determination, effort and talents have been so just justly rewarded,” said Canadian Para-Dressage Team Chef d’Équipe, Clive Milkins. “Para-dressage is a tough sport with high demands and pressures. Para-sport on the American continent is getting stronger and stronger and the achievement of qualifying for Tokyo must not be underestimated.”
Milkins continued, “I want to add my own personal thanks for the support I have received from EC and Canada to make this worthwhile. It is an honour to work with such dedicated individuals and now we have a chance to create a legacy from which we can build moving forwards. Thanks also to all the sponsors and office staff that make this endeavour work.”
EC is supported in its pursuit of excellence at Paralympic Games by the Canadian Paralympic Committee, Sport Canada and Own the Podium. EC wishes to also thank Sport Canada for its support of our athletes through the Athlete Assistance Program (AAP).
For more information on the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, click here. The full list of qualified nations can be found here. To support the Canadian Para-Dressage Team on its #RidetoTokyo, visit www.equestrian.ca/donate.