Diederik van Silfhout creates a surprise

Invited at the last minute to join the Dutch Dressage team to fill in for Danielle Heijkoop, the young Diederik van Silfhout has created a sensation at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2014™ in Normandy. Riding the promising Arlando NH NOP, the rider recorded a score of 77.286% in the Freestyle competition this afternoon. In the end, his performance was good enough for the 11th place while Charlotte Dujardin came out on top.

Diederik van Silfhout creates a surprise
© PSV Photos

What was your goal coming into the Games?

“I didn’t really have a specific goal, I came here as a reserve. My horse is still young for this type of contest so I just tried to prepare him the best I could. In the beginning, I was asked to come here for the Grand Prix but my horse was so good that I qualified for the Grand Prix Special. Today, the Freestyle was the icing on the cake.”

Your horse, Arlando NH NOP, was the youngest participant today. Can you tell us a little about him?

“Arlando is a nine-year-old KWPN stallion sired by Paddox. His grandfather, Mytens, was a purebred. I would say that he is a fantastic horse with many attributes and an excellent disposition. Technically, he works well in the piaffe and that he has a good extended trot and pirouettes. He knows how to do everything (laughing).”

What were your impressions when you entered the stadium in front of the massive crowd?

“I tried to concentrate. My dad told me: "Watch out, there are a lot of people out there, it will be noisy when you step into the stadium". So, I went into the zone with my horse. It was my first time in an arena like that. The atmosphere was incredible. With Arlando, we gained a lot of experience out there.”

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