The KNHS recently stated on their homepage that they have decided in consultation with the national coaches for dressage, eventing and reining to adjust the team/squad criteria for 2018.
The KNHS states that the goal that the new squad criteria reaches accurately reflect today’s top-sport performances.
Due to an ever increasing and evolving (international) level of the sport, the KNHS and its national coaches consider themselves obliged to set or revise the squad criteria in line with this high level. They state that firstly, an A-squad combination can be expected to qualify on the basis of their performance in a short period for an international championship (with medal opportunities. For a B-squad combination, this period is set to be slightly longer. Further is NOC * NSF also making stricter demands on the KNHS squads by for example setting a maximum number of riders per squad.
For these reasons it was decided to adjust the framework criteria as of 1 January 2018. The framework criteria, which are set out in the KNHS Participation Agreement 2018, are as follows as of 1 January 2018:
For admission and re-qualification, the rider-horse combination must achieve a score of 72% in a 9-month period, at a minimum of 3 competitions in the Country Test (Landenproef), of which at least two are at a FEI competition.
B – Squad:
For admission and re-qualification, the rider-horse combination must achieve a minimum score of 70% in a Country Trial (Landenproef) at, at least 3 competitions, in a 9-month period, of which at least two at a FEI competition.
U25 / Young Riders / Juniors / Ponies / Children:
For admission and re-qualification, the combination must achieve a score of 71% in a 9-month period in at least 3 competitions in the Country Test (Landenproef), of which at least one in a FEI competition
For admission and re-qualification, the combination must achieve a minimum score of 69% in a 9-month period for at least 3 competitions in the Country Test (Landenproef), out of which at least one at a FEI competition.
These new rules create extensive changes in the earlier squads, bumping many down to the B-squads or off the squads completely.
For Hans Peter Minderhoud, one of the most famous Dutch dressage riders, this change leads to that he no longer is included in neither the A nor the B-squad.
The dressage squads of U25, young riders, juniors and ponies have also been considerably reduced. As the A-squad score has been increased from 70% to 71% and for the B-squad the requirement has been increased from 68% to 69%, many riders do not fulfill these high criteria.
Micky Schelstraete with Elin’s Noncisdador is the only A-squad combination of the pony riders which remains in the A-squad. Thessa Gilbers (Baumann’s Despino) and Shanna Baars (Camillo du Bois) are now included in the B-squad.