Dunphy has had a successful career as one of Ireland’s top dressage athletes, competing in International Small Tour and Big Tour and was crowned Irish National Grand Prix and Grand Prix Kur Champion in 2016 and 2017. She brings a wealth of experience to the table and has played an influential role in the growth and development of youth dressage in Ireland. She was appointed HSI Youth Dressage High Performance Director when the programme began in 2013 and will remain in this position.
Through her role within the youth dressage programme, Dunphy is responsible for devising the high-performance pathway and programme structures for the development of Irish youth dressage athletes to international and European Championship level. Irish teams have now competed at consecutive FEI Pony European Championships and there has been a significant rise in the number of athletes progressing through to Junior and Young Rider ranks. In recognition of her work with Irish youth dressage, Dunphy was awarded the HSI Coach of the Year Award in 2016.
HSI would like to thank Johann for his contribution to Irish dressage and the senior high-performance programme. He has played a pivotal role in growing Irish senior dressage since his appointment in August 2019 and has been instrumental in bringing new combinations into the squad – HSI would like to wish him success in the future.
The immediate focus for the Irish Senior Dressage squad will be on the pool of athletes who have qualified, or have yet to achieve qualification, for the FEI Dressage European Championship for Seniors in Riesenbeck, Germany this year. These championships serve as the final opportunity for team qualification for the Paris Olympics, with Ireland campaigning against nations from Group A and Group B, who are not already qualified, which includes the likes of Belgium, Switzerland, Portugal and Spain. The qualification spots will be hotly contested by all nations.
Speaking about the appointment, Dunphy said: “I’m very much looking forward to taking up the position as the High Performance Director for Senior Dressage. We have some great combinations on the circuit at the moment and I am excited to be working with each of these athletes and building up a strong team. Alongside qualified combinations some of our athletes secured the first of their qualification scores for the European Championship recently and we will be putting a plan in place to maximise our potential for the European Championship and beyond. I would like to thank Johann for his work over the last number of years, I was fortunate to have observed and availed of his coaching during his tenure and we also had a number of very beneficial collaborations with my youth squads. Also, thank you to Horse Sport Ireland for this opportunity.”
HSI CEO, Denis Duggan added:
“We would like to congratulate Anne Marie on her appointment. Anne Marie has developed an excellent team environment within youth dressage which will now be extended into the senior ranks. She is very experienced in team management and will work closely with the Sport Department within HSI to develop a senior high-performance pathway, with the immediate aim of qualifying for the 2023 FEI European Championship and the 2024 Paris Olympics. Long term, we are very much looking forward to seeing how the Irish dressage programme develops under Anne Marie’s tutelage and have been very impressed with her vision for the programme into the future.”