Nine-time World Cup dressage champion and multiple dressage Olympic gold medalist Van Grunsven is no stranger to reining, however; she has been working with a reining trainer since late last year and has said she is aiming to compete in both reining and dressage at the World Equestrian Games next year.
The four will take a four-day crash course in the trademark sliding stops, mind-blurring spins and classical power-steering of the Reining horse before they hit the arena for a thrilling head-to-head competition. They will be paired with National Reining Horse Association Professionals Rick Weaver and Ann Fonck in the first-ever International Reining Celebrity Challenge.
The National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) and the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) are co-sponsors of the International Reining Celebrity Challenge and are supplying expertise in the form of coaches, riders and, of course, horses. Each team will consist of the following riders with one dressage, one jumping and one reining competitor assigned to each team.
Charlotte Bredahl is a dressage team Olympic medalist, USEF "S" judge and FEI "C" judge; Pessoa is a jumping Olympic gold medalist, three-time World Cup Champion and the youngest World Equestrian Games World Champion; and Will Simpson was part of the US Olympic jumping gold medal team.
The reining contest takes place on April 18.