Horse sport Woman of the Year: Joyce van Rooijen-Heuitink

After the FEI Dressage World Cup Freestyle, the Horsesport man of the Year 2021 was honoured. But this time it was not a man. For the first time in 43 years, the committee that chooses the Horse sport man/woman of the Year has succeeded in awarding this most prestigious title in the Dutch equestrian world to a woman: Joyce van Rooijen-Heuitink. The string of medals that this Horse sport Woman of the Year has managed to collect with her athletes in recent years is impressive. Gold and silver with the team at the World Championships. Bronze and silver with the team at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo and an overwhelming row of individual medals.

It is largely thanks to Joyce that para dressage has been able to take its rightful place within the total equestrian sport in The Netherlands. Joyce has studied the limitations of the riders and how they can and should deal with that during training and competition. This approach is bearing fruit.

The committee is convinced that by awarding this distinction to Joyce van Rooijen - Heuitink, she and her team members will set sail for Herning with even more motivation, in order to capture gold again at the World Championships and then continue on to the Paris Games, in order to capture team gold there as well.

Like all 43 previous elections, it was a unanimous decision by the committee consisting of Nicole van Doorne, chairman, Adrienne van Waardenberg Nooren, Henk Nijhof Sr., Rob Ehrens and Jacob Melissen.
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