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National Dressage Championships
National Equestrian Centre
Werribee Park, Victoria
6th, 7th, 8th & 9th April 2000

Introducing the Judges

Uwe Mechlem (Germany)

Mr Mechlem is one of only twenty Dressage judges in the world who can award the ‘Certificate of Capability’ required for Olympic participation. He is renowned to be one of the best Dressage judges in the world.

After the competition, he said …….

"The organisation of this competition was very good, and I was impressed with the number of horses who participated … it was two hundred or so, wasn’t it? It was good to see the competition for young riders because good juniors make good seniors!   Not very often do you have a show with all levels in Europe, as there are just too many horses and the organisers could not manage it.  At this show you could see how the horse develops from young through to Grand Prix".

"There has been a definite improvement. Last time I saw 2 or 3 good horse and rider combinations at the higher levels. This time I saw 6 or 7 who were above average".

Linda Zang (USA)

Linda has been a member of the International FEI Dressage Committee since 1995. She has judged at several world cup finals including Atlanta in 1996 and the World Equestrian Games in 1998. Linda has competed in Dressage for the United States on an International level for many years before becoming a respected judge at an International level. This is Linda Zang’s second visit to Australia.

After the competition, she said …….

This event was of a ‘real International standard’ and equal to anything held in the USA. Saturday night’s program was very well put together with the singing, fashion parade, the horses and the cars - it was really good! The standard of riding and the horses has really improved dramatically since my last visit and there were some excellent combinations.

Kathinka de Monchy (NZ)

Kathinka started judging in the Netherlands before she and her husband and three sons immigrated to New Zealand in 1981. Her mentor was the late Jaap Pot, who inspired her to become an International Judge. She has judged in the Netherlands, Australia, the USA and New Zealand.

Mary Seefried (Australia)

Mary started her equestrian competition career in Horse Trials and Showjumping. After marriage, Mary switched to competitive Dressage and has successfully competed in National competitions at FEI level. She became an FEI International judge in 1983 and was appointed as Australia’s first ‘O’ Level Judge in 1998. She judges regularly in Europe and in 1999 judged at the World Cup Dressage final at Dortmund, Germany.

Joy Charlton (Aus)

After the competition, she said …….

"The horses have improved just so much - the preparation for the 2000 Olympic games has helped horses and riders to really lift their game. The Institute of Sport in Canberra has done a wonderful job, it has availed our equestrian athletes of the back-up of sports psychologists, stress management councillors, media management assistance as well as performance coaching, and this has enabled our elite equestrians to be better at their job! When judging the Grand Prix Special, I was truly delighted to see the improvement. The horses and riders actually improved their performances from their first competition at the start of the championships, and today I saw some very good quality dressage, it was great".

Jillian Cobcroft AUS      Susie Hoevenaars AUS

Virginia Creed AUS      Jan Bird NZ

Dr. Ricky McMillan QLD     Maria Schwenneson QLD

Gisella Nilsson-Harding NSW    Joanne Fowler WA

Sue Goodwin WA      Judy Peel TAS

Jane Grant  VIC     M Kelly VIC

Judy Sheldrake NT    Marie Gahan VIC

Brenda Atkinson TAS     Bernadette Gibson TAS

Prue Foletta SA    Helen Heagney VIC

Gill Botten WA Pat Britton VIC

Janet Earle VIC Judy Quinn VIC