The CDIOs of Falsterbø, Sweden and Rotterdam, Netherlands will no longer host legs of the FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ as previously planned in 2024. However, according to organizers, both events will proceed as regular CDIO5* and CDIO4* competitions, respectively. This follows the notice that CDIO Aachen gave in February that it would not stage an FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ Event in 2024, opting instead to hold a regular CDIO5*.

The decision of Falsterbø and Rotterdam to withdraw stemmed from their preference to choose to invite their own participating teams independently of the updated regulations specified in Article 3.4 of the FEI Dressage Nations Cup Rules 2024. which states:

“Each CDIO-NC Organiser must invite all NFs and is not permitted to limit the number of NFs that can participate. The only possible limitation is the maximum number of combinations to start per day (forty (40) combinations).”

According to the FEI statement, updates to the Rules were introduced with the purpose of promoting inclusivity and transparency in the invitation process, and extending invitations to all National Federations (NFs) who wished to participate in the FEI Nations Cup™ Series. The rule revision was approved by the FEI Board at their meeting in August 2023 and all National Federations were notified of the change immediately after.

CHIO Rotterdam immediately issued a press release from sport director of dressage Patrick van der Meer, stating:

“The decision was taken in accordance with the CHIO Aachen and CDIO Falsterbo because the CHIO Rotterdam cannot fulfill the agreements previously made with the National Federations of the participating countries on the basis of the rules amended by the FEI at the beginning of this year, that mean that the best teams based on the average of the points in the FEI world ranking may participate.”

“For us, the interests of the participants come first. This means that we would only be able to admit teams two weeks before the start of the CHIO Rotterdam. We had already invited eight countries [Belgium, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Germany, Sweden, USA and The Netherlands] before the rules changed and, especially in an Olympic year, you cannot leave participants in uncertainty for so long.”

This now reduces the number of Dressage Nations Cup competitions in 2024 to just three – the first leg was held in Wellington, Florida, in February; then Compiegne, France, May 2-4, and Pilisjászfalu, Hungary, from May 8-12. Following the conclusion of this year’s series, the FEI advises that all stakeholders will convene to explore future possibilities for the FEI Nations Cup Dressage Series.