India’s Historic Dressage Team: On September 26, 2023, the Indian Dressage Team accomplished a remarkable feat by clinching a gold medal at the Asian Games, ending a 41-year drought. This monumental achievement not only exemplifies the team’s exceptional skill and teamwork but also signifies a significant milestone in Indian equestrian sports, specifically dressage—a beloved discipline in the country.
A Milestone for Indian Equestrian Sports
The victory at the Asian Games 2023 serves as a testament to the remarkable progress made in Indian equestrian sports. It also marks India’s inaugural podium finish in the event at the Asian Games, solidifying the nation’s position in the international equestrian community. This historic accomplishment fills the nation with immense pride and serves as a beacon of inspiration for future generations of Indian equestrians.
Meet the Athletes Behind India’s Gold Medal Victory
The Indian Dressage Team comprised four outstanding athletes, each contributing significantly to the team’s success. Here’s a closer look at these remarkable individuals:
India’s Historic Dressage Team
1. Sudipti Hajela: The Rising Star
Born on May 10, 2002, in Indore, Sudipti Hajela embarked on her equestrian journey at the tender age of six. Initially, it started as a summer hobby but soon evolved into a full-fledged career. Sudipti completed her schooling at Daly College, Indore, which played a pivotal role in shaping her equestrian journey. Currently based in Paris, Sudipti trains under the guidance of trainers who are part of the French Olympics team and the French national teams.
2. Divyakriti Singh: A Versatile Competitor
Divyakriti Singh, a 23-year-old international dressage rider, hails from Jaipur, Rajasthan. She is an alumna of Mayo College Girls School and is pursuing her studies in psychology at Jesus and Mary College, University of Delhi. Divyakriti’s equestrian journey was fostered through her college program, and she has represented India in various international competitions across Europe and national events in the country. Her training spans several equestrian hubs worldwide, including the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, and Wellington, Florida, USA.
3. Anush Agarwalla: The Early Enthusiast
Born in Kolkata on November 23, 1999, Anush Agarwalla discovered his passion for riding at the age of three. What began as a weekend joy ride soon transformed into a lifelong passion. By the time he was eight, Anush was enrolled in riding lessons, and at 11, he began his equestrian journey in New Delhi. Balancing school on weekdays and rigorous training on weekends, Anush’s dedication and hard work have paid off in representing India.
4. Hriday Chheda: The Mumbai Sensation
Hriday Chheda, born on July 24, 1998, in Mumbai, shares a similar early start with Anush Agarwalla. His equestrian journey began at the age of six, and over the past decade, he has trained extensively in various parts of India and Europe. His dedication and commitment have propelled him to excel in the sport.
A Glimpse into Dressage’s Rich History in India
Dressage, with its colonial origins in India, was introduced by the British and later evolved into a sport associated with Indian nobility and royalty. Today, it continues to be a beloved pastime and a thrilling sport in the country, captivating the hearts of both enthusiasts and adventurers alike.