Carlos Lopes (the Portugal Team Selector) told me it is not just the evolution of the Lusitano breed that has achieved this result, but also the investors in the horses and their support for the internationalisation of the riders. These investors have shown huge faith in the breed and commitment to International advancement. With this support there is greater access to more training and therefore better performance in the horses and riders.
The qualifying riders and horses are Maria Caetano Couceiro on Coroado, Rodrigo Moura Torres on Fogoso, João Torrão on Equador and Duarte Nogueira on Beirao.
Maria Caetano riding Coroado now ranked 38th in the FEI World Dressage Ranking has for the first time in Lusitano Competition History cracked the 80% barrier by finishing 2019 with 80,940% 2nd place at CDYW MECHELEN.
In 1954 Roger Bannister smashed the 4 minute mile which led to 4 more achieving the same within a year. How many riders inspired by Maria and Coroado´s achievements will score over 80% in the next years on their Lusitanos !! The flood gates of belief are officially open. It’s certainly an exciting future for the breed.
Quote taken from an interview with Carl Hester who has been working with João Torrão on Lusitano Equador
“I find Lusitanos are so kind and willing to work, Equador transforms from looking like a cuddly pony in the stable to a real showman in the arena. The pair have achieved so much so young and they have the potential to achieve a place in the top 10 world rankings”.
I talked with the riders to learn more about their journey and their future plans.