Nanna, Zack and Orthilia moving UP on FEI's Dressage World Ranking

2021 has been an exciting year for Nanna S. Merrald, with her results on breeding stallion Blue Hors Zack and Atterupgaards Orthilia has been more than spectacular!
Nanna, Zack and Orthilia moving UP on FEI's Dressage World Ranking

Blue Hors Zack - World Cup Herning 2021

Zack moves two spots up on the FEI’s World Ranking

With two great fifth places at World Cup Herning, an eleventh place in the Freestyle from the Olympics in Tokyo and several great placings at several three- and four-starred CDIs, Nanna Skodborg Merrald and the 17-year-old breeding stallion Blue Hors Zack (by Rousseau / Jazz, breeder: B. Wilschut) have been a solid constellation on the Danish national team.

It is also the reason why Nanna and Zack have just advanced from a position as number 27 on the FEI’s Dressage World Ranking to a position as number 25.

The adventure started in the French town of Le Mans and was cemented in the German city of Hagen

Back in February 2021, Zack and his then brand new rider Nanna Skodborg Merrald proved that they are a match made in heaven for the international dressage sport! With 74.17% in their Grand Prix debut at the CDI3* competition in Le Mans, they brought on a nice distance of 2% down to the show’s second placed rider.

The team repeated their success at the four-starred CDI show; Horses & Dreams meets Japan Sports Edition 2021 in Hagen. Here, flanked by groom Ellen Glinvad Nielsen, trainer Michael Søgaard, Nanna and the horses Blue Hors Farrell, Atterupgaards Orthilia and of course Blue Hors Zack were ready to chase two Olympic qualifications and of course lots of placements – and they succeeded!

Nanna and Farrell came home with a double victory in the CDI1* Prix St. George and Intermediare I. Orthilia brought home a victory in Sunday’s CDI4* Grand Prix  – and with the superstar Zack, Nanna rode herself into two third places in the CDI4* Grand Prix and the Grand Prix Freestyle – ‘Under the Floodlights’. The two thirds were the couple’s only 3rd and 4th show appearances together – and this time, they were only surpassed by Charlotte Dujardin on Gio (Apache / Tango) and Frederic Wandres with Duke of Britain (Dimaggio / Rubinstein).

FEI Dressage World Ranking

Orthilia advances 45 spots UP the FEI Ranking!

The story of Nanna and Atterupgaards Orthilia (by Gribaldi / Donnerschlag, breeder: Atterupgaard /Kristine Munch Sinding) has happened with rocket-ish speed! Also on the world rankings, where they have moved up a total of 45 spots from a position as number 77 to now being ranked as number 32!

Nanna started her competition adventure on the 16-year-old mare Orthilia at the World Cup Salzburg in January 2021, where she participated in the CDI3* Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle, where they came in third in the Grand Prix. After that, their next event was the CDI4* Horses & Dreams show in Hagen at the end of April, where they won the Grand Prix.

Nanna and Orthilia in the french town of Lyon

As a now well-established pair, Nanna brought Orthilia with her to the Danish Championships, where they achieved a nice silver medal before Nanna, Orthilia and Zack went on to quarantine in Aachen, to prepare before the flight to the Olympic Games in Japan. With two horses qualified for the Olympics, Orthilia was included as Nanna’s reserve-horse as an extra security in case something should happen before the flight.

While Nanna was at the Olympics with Zack, Orthilia was kept in shape at home at Blue Hors – and what a shape! The mare was more than ready for her next task; The European Championships in Hagen! On the first day of the team competition, Nanna and Orthilia placed as the class’ preliminary number 1 with a more than convincing ride in the Grand Prix with a wild score of 75.078%, which contributed to the Danish national dressage team winning this year’s bronze-medal at the FEI Dressage European Championships 2021!

And Nanna and Orthilia continued this winning-streak at the World Cup Lyon. Here, on the first day, they came in third in the short Grand Prix, while on day two they came in second – surpassed only by the queen of dressage; Isabell Werth, on her Blue Hors Don Schufro-daughter Weihegold OLD.

What will be this impressive pair’s next big achievement?