Brentina out of the FEI World Cup Final 

26 Mar 2004

Title Holder withdraws from FEI World Cup Final 

FEI World Cup Champion Debbie McDonald has had to withdraw Parry and Peggy Thomas's chestnut mare Brentina from next week's Final in
Duesseldorf due to injury.

After their warm up competition at CDI Dortmund two weeks ago, where
they won both the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special, Brentina was found to have a slightly swollen leg. Despite careful monitoring, hopes that the US combination could defend their title were dashed when leading veterinarian Dr Peter Cronau diagnosed a mild tendon strain. While not serious for the mare's future, this would however make any performance during the next few weeks inadvisable.

McDonald said: " We consulted with Dr Cronau and Brentina's vet at home, and both vets agreed that for Brentina to compete on full power could do far worse damage in the long run. The World Cup Final is not a place to go half measures, so in the horse's best interests we could not risk it. We came all this way to defend the title, we were ready for it, so it is just awful, especially as a week or two later it may have been OK."

USET trainer Klaus Balkenhol said: " The horse's health must always come first, but everyone involved is very sad for Debbie and her team, for
the organisers and for us, especially as Duesseldorf is our home town."

McDonald will be at the FEI World Cup Final next week to support her
compatriots Guenter Seidel and Leslie Morse, while Brentina will rest
before returning home to the USA.

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