Equestrian quits Olympics to save her horse: 'In order to protect him, I gave up'

For so many world-class athletes participating in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the only goals are glory and gold medals. However, for Dutch dressage rider Adelinde Cornelissen, her close bond with equine partner, Parzival, proves to be top priority.
CNN reports that Cornelissen's horse, Parzival, a 19-year-old Dutch warmblood gelding, presumably fell victim to an insect bite that caused a fever and swelling of the head.
Advertisement
Cornelissen recounted the ordeal with an Aug. 10 Facebook post, describing how she asked if the Dutch team could compete on a different day, allowing Parzival to recover. However, the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) declined her request.
Despite the fact that the FEI vets approved Parzival as healthy enough to compete after close monitoring and a regimen of fluids to flush out any insect bite toxins, Cornelissen still felt that something wasn't quite right.
She wrote on Facebook, "But in order to protect him, I gave up...My buddy, my friend, the horse that has given everything for me his whole life does not deserve this.... So I saluted and left the arena."

My story.... Lots has happened... The first days in Rio went according to plan: a relaxed flight, stabling good,...

Posted by Adelinde Cornelissen on Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Advertisement
Cornelissen is a world champion dressage equestrian. She won bronze and silver medals, respectively, for team and individual dressage during the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Resources eponatv, Adelinde Cornelissen, and CNN

Jenny Rolfe relies on breath and energy to build a connection with horses in her training methods instead of brute force.
May 26   ·  
Advertisement
Horses, like most animals, are cautious around new stimuli, and a foal is no exception.
May 26   ·  
Weibke Haas is an photographer who specializes in equine photography.
May 25   ·  
A circle of bubbles begins to rise from the depth.
May 27   ·  
Camouflage is one very effective way that snakes hide themselves from predators. I'll bet you can't locate the copperhead snake hiding in plain sight!
May 18   ·  
This baby and her Tabby have a morning ritual that is absolutely adorable, and Dad caught it all on film!
May 10   ·