After spending the past 10 years as High Performance Coach of the New Zealand Eventing Team, Erik Duvander will step down from the role at the end of this month, Equestrian Sports New Zealand announced yesterday.
“Like all Olympic sports, we are currently in the process of a review and debrief,” ESNZ High Performance Director Sarah Dalziell-Clout said. “As a part of that we are looking at our programme from an end-to-end perspective to continue to develop what has already been put in place and to make those changes required to ensure future sustainable success on the world stage.”
Erik coached the Kiwis to team bronze medals at both the 2010 World Equestrian Games in Lexington and the 2012 London Olympic Games. Andrew Nicholson and Nereo also won individual bronze at the 2010 WEG during Erik’s coaching tenure.
Jesse Campbell posted a message of thanks to Erik on his Facebook page: “Certainly the end of a great era. Erik has been a massive influence in my career for the past 14 years and has really helped guide me through the bad times and the good. I will always be grateful to him for restoring my confidence after the most difficult introduction to English life.
“He has never been afraid to tell me exactly how he sees something and pulled me into line on several occasions, but at the same time was completely supportive of me and my horses. Rain, hail or shine, he would always be there and give 100 percent of himself. I wish him all the best for the future. We have been really lucky to have you.”
The news of Erik’s departure comes soon after the announcement that Jock Paget is leaving the UK to move home to New Zealand, where he will take up the new role of ESNZ High Performance Development Coach in February.
A timeline has not yet been announced for ESNZ to name a new High Performance Coach for the New Zealand Eventing Team. Our friends at NZ Horse & Pony Magazine spoke to Sarah Dalziell-Clout about the process for finding a new coach, which you can read about here.