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Sharn Wordley Helps Qualify New Zealand for Olympics at CSI*** Balve

Balve, Germany—It was do or die for the New Zealand show jumping team hoping to qualify for the 2008 Olympics in Hong Kong, but consistent riding from some of the country’s top veterans ensured their spot at next year’s games. Sharn Wordley, currently based in the United States, had come to Europe to compete with the goal of riding on his country’s Nation’s Cup team at Balve.

“Obviously this was really important to everyone,” Wordley says. “I have a young horse that I’m really excited about so this is an important personal goal too.” Wordley and his teammates, Kirk Webby, Daniel Meech and Bruce Godin, had to beat Korea, Japan and Taiwan, in order to join Australia as the two countries from “Group G” for the Olympic Games. By jumping a four-fault round in the Nations Cup Wordley has earned his Certificate of Capability, which is needed to be considered for the New Zealand Olympic squad.

Wordley rode Fall Kaheer, a Belgian Warmblood gelding by Pavarotti. The pair had only been together a little over a week when they faced the pressure in Balve, although it was already their second horse show. Wordley recounts, “I picked him up and drove directly to Belgium,” where the duo faced more than 50 other competitors in the Grand Prix du CSI** de Wisbecq. Wordley and Fall Kaheer jumped a double-clear round to finish fourth.

About Sharn Wordley:

Wordley, a native of New Zealand, has represented his country in numerous Nation’s Cups and has competed in 22 countries. He qualified for the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games and was the young rider champion in New Zealand earlier in his career. In addition to his victories as a rider, Wordley has coached riders who have gone on to represent their countries in the Olympics, World Cup Finals, World Championships and the Pan American Games.


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