Last night, March 24, Anky van Grunsven announced in a televised press conference that she would compete IPS Painted Black in Las Vegas, Nev., at the Rolex FEI World Cup Final.
Van Grunsven would’ve preferred to bring her four-time World Cup winner IPS Salinero, but he had a long break after winning individual gold at the Olympic Games and only competed in one World Cup qualifier.
Van Grunsven was qualified for the Final, because she won last year, but the rules stated that she must compete the horse she wanted to bring in two qualifiers. Salinero was scheduled to compete at the Göteborg CDI-W (Sweden) and the ‘s-Hertogenbosch CDI-W (the Netherlands), but a back injury prevented van Grunsven from riding in Sweden.
After ‘s-Hertogenbosch, van Grunsven hoped to acquire a wild card for Salinero, but even the wild cards must compete in two qualifiers, and the Dutch Equestrian Federation hadn’t applied for one for van Grunsven.
“The Dutch Federation and Sjef [Janssen, van Grunsven’s husband and coach] have looked into the rules [to see] if there is any opening so that Salinero can compete, and apparently there is an opening, but Anky choose now to go with Painted Black and not to force Salinero’s participation,” said the statement on van Grunsven’s website.
In her De Telegraaf column she wrote that it wouldn’t be good for the sport or her honor to continue fighting to bring Salinero. She also said there will be too many top riders in Las Vegas for her not to go, and now she has extra motivation to lay down a good result with Painted Black.