Johann Hinnemann is stepping down as High Performance Director for the Irish dressage team at Horse Sport Ireland, the Federation itself announces. Anne Marie Dunphy, a former international Grand Prix rider herself, will take over his role.
Things have been rumbling at HSI for a while. A number of board members have already resigned, and chairman Joe Reynolds has already resigned from his position as well. Two years ago, the Irish dressage team was able to qualify for the Olympics, which was a first for the country. However, Johann Hinnemann did not give this the green light, which led to discontent among the riders. When the HSI still applied for a starting spot, it was already too late and they had thus lost their chance.
Because of this incident, Rawlins and Connor, two members of the Irish team, had withdrawn from the European Championships, making that qualification too due to an incomplete team. Recently, six board members have already left HSI and there was distrust of chairman Joe Reynolds and CEO Denis Duggan, upon which Reynolds also decided to resign. A provisional board has since been appointed, to remain in charge until after the 2024 Paris Olympics.