Longtime Canadian dressage judge and rider Cara Whitham is joining a team to experts to work with the country’s high performance riders.
The creation of this team is being spearheaded by Desi Dillingham, MBE, Special Advisor to Dressage Canada.
Dillingham is working closely with Dressage Canada to build a dynamic team of experts, which will work toward programs to support riders aiming to represent Canada at major games-including the upcoming 2014 World Equestrian
“I have known Cara personally since we were in our early teens. And I have since seen her in parallel positions in dressage over the past 30 years,” said Dillingham, who has a wealth of experience and knowledge in the field of dressage, as well as vast international connections and contacts across the equestrian industry.
“I am thrilled to have her as part of the team. What she doesn’t know isn’t worth knowing.”
Whitham, of Stoney Creek, Ontario, is the only FEI official to hold 5* judging credentials for both dressage and eventing. As a rider, she was named a short and long-listed rider for the Canadian Dressage Team numerous times, won Canadian Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle Championship titles, and was Chef d’Equipe for Canada’s Dressage team during a four-year European tour leading into the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. She was also Chef d’Equipe for the Costa Rican Gold Medal Team at the 2013 Central American Games in Costa Rica.
She also lent input into a high performance plan that produced Canada’s only Olympic Team Medal in dressage to date, at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
Other achievements include working on the Ground Jury for the the 2003 and 2011 Pan American Games, 2005 European Dressage Championships and the 2010 World Equestrian Games, and being appointed to the Eventing Ground Jury for the 1998 and 2002 World Equestrian Games, as well as the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Whitham has attained FEI Dressage Technical Delegate status, and was television commentator for the 2007 World Equestrian Games, and 2004, 2008, and 2012 Olympic Games.
“I’m thrilled and honoured to be invited to be part of Desi’s team. Dressage has always been my passion-in particular, Canadian Dressage,” said Whitham.
“I hope I can bring to this position all the international experience and knowledge that I have been fortunate to be a part of for so many years. It’s so exciting to see the future for Canada.”