Photo courtesy of Australian International 3 Day Event.
Life and sport might feel a bit more like normal after the successful staging of the Tokyo Olympics, but here’s an unwelcome reminder that things are still in flux: the Australian Three-Day Event CCI5* in Adelaide has been cancelled for the second consecutive year due to ongoing Covid restrictions.
Greg Bolton, Chair of the event’s board, explained that lockdowns in various Australian states had impacted many riders qualification routes, leaving them with inadequate time to prepare and gain the necessary results to contest the Aussie showpiece, which was due to take place from 18–21 November and is the only CCI5* in the Southern Hemisphere. This ordinarily means that the field of entries is significantly smaller than those we see at Europe’s five-stars — and that field would only have been further shrunk in this tricky year.
“Our primary focus is to deliver a safe and successful event at the world-class benchmark we have created,” said Bolton in a statement released today (August 6). “Unfortunately, with continued lockdowns across the country in 2021, this has impacted the ability for riders to compete and qualify for the Aus3DE. We are disappointed this has led to the decision to cancel the 2021 Aus3DE, particularly after the success of our Olympic Silver Medal winning Equestrian Eventing Team at the Tokyo Olympics, but we have our sights set on the delivery of a fantastic event in 2022 post this pandemic.”
The event’s board is committed to the return of the event in 2022. Meanwhile, the Northern Hemisphere’s CCI5* pathway continues on apace, with Burghley’s replacement event at Bicton taking place in the first week of September, followed by the inaugural Maryland CCI5* from October 13–17 and France’s Les 5 Etoiles de Pau from October 27–31.