Michèle George

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Para Equestran

Dressage competitor Michèle George became a Cavalor ambassador after her double-gold win at the London 2012 Paralympics aboard Rainman, a 10-year-old chestnut gelding. In addition to Rainman, many young, talented horses stand in her stable in the Hainaut town of Amogies in Belgium.

"I am very pleased about my partnership with Cavalor. "Before and during the 2012 Games, the horses of the Belgian delegation were accompanied by the super Cavalor team. Their nutritional counseling for London was great. The guidance of Cavalor was very professional, and it certainly contributed to the success of the Belgian team in London," says Michèle, who has been coached by Ulla Salzgeber and Jean Bemelmans.

"I'm very happy for myself and Cavalor. We are both very pleased that our relationship has taken on a long-term scope. This provides an important and serious form of support for me. It also means a form of recognition for our sport, and I am very grateful to the staff of Cavalor."
Born in Ostend in 1974, Michèle 's "horse-loving story" began at the age of 12. She remembers her mother taking her horseback riding at a small club. Within a week, she says, she preferred spending her time around what she found to be "this magic animal called ‘horse.'"
About a year later, Michèle helped train several race horses. Due to her height, however, she was forced to look for another discipline and went into show jumping. Soon she realized that show jumping wasn't her passion and decided to learn how to ride dressage. "From that day, I made up my mind and kept training," she says.

Today a 38-year old rider, Michèle has made no secret of her accident in 2008 and has taken a courageous path. She was left partially paralyzed after an accident longing a young horse. At the time, she had about 20 horses waiting for her to resume their training.
Every day after the accident Michèle tried to walk and finally reached that goal. She kept training every day and quickly became skilled in riding with a whip, as she no longer has feeling in her left leg and foot. After about six months, she decided to test herself in a competition because, in her words, "Riding just for fun without a target has never been my thing. So I took my chance and won. What a feeling!"

"That's how I started to ride in Paraequestrian competitions. A judge saw me riding and spoke to the national coach, Anne D'Ieteren, who invited me to be classified. That year I started my first competition in Paraequestrian in the European Championships in Norway and won two silver medals," she says.
A year later, she was selected to compete in the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 in Kentucky, where she became Vice World Champion. In 2011, she qualified for the European Championship in Belgium.
Michèle's philosophy is: "The sky is the limit. Never give up. After every down there will be an up. Just follow your dreams!"



Coverphoto: Dirk Caremans

Biography at fei.org :