DUJARDIN Charlotte

13 Jul 1985
Great Britain
Great Britain

Events and Medals

Discipline Event Rank Medal
EQU Equestrian Dressage Team 3 Bronze Medal
Dressage Individual 3 Bronze Medal


Location Event Status
Equestrian Park
Equestrian Park

Biographical Information


Olympic Games
YearLocationDressage IndividualDressage Team
2016Rio de Janeiro, BRA12
2012London, GBR11

World Equestrian Games
YearLocationGP SpecialGP FreestyleDressage Team
2018Tryon, NC, USA3-3
2014Normandy, FRA112

European Championships
YearLocationDressage Team
2019Rotterdam, NED4

World Cup Western European League
1Grand Prix Freestyle2019/2020London, GBR
2Grand Prix Freestyle2019/2020Amsterdam, NED
2Grand Prix Freestyle2019/2020Lyon, FRA
2Grand Prix Freestyle2018/2019London, GBR

GP - Grand Prix, NS - Not Started, RT - Retired, WD - Withdrawn, EL - Eliminated
Edwina [given to her by Carl Hester, after the fictional character Edward Scissorhands, because he thought her movement and hands were harsh], The Girl on the Dancing Horse. (news.sky.com, 10 Jan 2020; newyorker.com, 08 Aug 2016; dailymail.co.uk, 07 Sep 2013; Instagram profile, 30 Jun 2021)
Shopping, spending time with friends, walking her dogs. (theguardian.com, 19 May 2018; horseandrideruk.com, 28 May 2019)
Athlete, Coach, Horse Trainer
Carl Hester [personal], GBR
She used to show horses and ponies, and won titles at both the Horse of the Year Show [HOYS] and the Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead in England. (eurodressage.com, 07 Aug 2011)
She began riding at age two and took up dressage at age 13. "It was something I started when I was young and my mum and sister were involved, too, so we enjoyed it as a family. I loved horses from the start." (supremeproducts.co.uk, 09 Apr 2012; eurodressage.com, 07 Aug 2011; ponymag.com, 01 Jan 2016)
She was into showing and did not want to do dressage, but her trainer Debbie Thomas put her on a grand prix horse and persuaded her to try the discipline. She picked up the skills immediately. She was able to buy her own first grand prix horse [Fernandez] thanks to inheritance money from her grandmother. "My parents don't have a lot of money and it was only through my mum's mum dying that we managed to buy Fernandez at a sale. He taught me so much and I have to say, I owe my mum an awful lot." (supremeproducts.co.uk, 09 Apr 2012; standard.co.uk, 2012; eurodressage.com, 07 Aug 2011)
To win a medal at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. (news.sky.com, 10 Jan 2020)
Winning gold in individual and team dressage at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. (vanolsthorses.com, 11 Dec 2020)
British dressage rider and coach Carl Hester, German dressage rider Isabell Werth. (equestrianteamgbr.co.uk, 09 Apr 2012; skysports.com, 02 Jan 2021)
She has a pair of lucky breeches. (horseandrideruk.com, 28 May 2019)
"I want to create. It is probably like an artist. They see in their head what they want to draw, and they draw it. It is like I have a feeling inside me that I want to create on a horse, and that is what I do. It's easy [to stay motivated] because it's not just about competing, but the whole partnership I have with my horses and their training. That's what motivates me every day." (newyorker.com, 08 Aug 2016; horseandrideruk.com, 28 May 2019)
In December 2020 she was named Professional Rider of the Decade by readers of Horse & Hound magazine. Her horse Valegro [who was retired from competition in December 2016] was named Horse of the Decade. (vanolsthorses.com, 11 Dec 2020; horseandhound.co.uk, 01 Dec 2020)

She was appointed Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire [CBE] in the 2017 New Year's Honours list. (horseandhound.co.uk, 30 Dec 2016)

She was named the 2014 Sunday Times and Sky Sports Sportswoman of the Year. She also won the 2014 BT Sport Action Woman of the Year award. (horseandhound.co.uk, 10 Dec 2014, 20 Nov 2014)

She was named the 2013 Best Athlete by the International Equestrian Federation [FEI]. (insidethegames.biz, 07 Nov 2013)

In 2013 she was made Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. [OBE]. (sportinglife.com, 10 Jan 2013)

General Interest

She wears a protective helmet instead of a customary top hat when competing after falling in 2009 and fracturing her skull. At the 2012 Olympic Games in London, she became the first dressage rider to win a gold medal wearing a helmet. "I feel unsafe without my helmet on. People say you don't always need it but for me, especially in this kind of atmosphere, you never know what can happen." (theguardian.com, 15 Dec 2014; telegraph.co.uk, 10 Aug 2012; Instagram profile, 30 Jun 2021)

In March 2018 she released her autobiography called 'The Girl on the Dancing Horse', in which she revealed that she had struggled with depression following the 2012 Olympic Games in London and a breakup with former partner Dean Golding. "Depression was not something I'd ever really understood. But it got to the point where I was thinking about harming myself because I had no idea what to do next. I wanted to hurt myself because I felt such pain. I never wanted to stab myself or hang myself, I did it by not eating, punishing myself in that way. I lost quite a lot of weight, nearly two stone. I honestly didn't feel as if anyone could help me. It did not matter where I went or who I spoke to, I could not escape the grief and the pain of losing my old life, the life I'd had before the Olympics, and I think that was something I had to figure out for myself. I came to the yard and I rode my way through wave after wave for five, six months. My horses lifted me every day. I don't know why I wanted to punish myself, it was not that I had done anything wrong, but I suppose I was grieving because I'd lost Dean, I feared I was about to lose Valegro and I'd definitely lost any kind of normality." (Instagram profile, 13 Sep 2020; dailymail.co.uk, 03 Mar 2018)

She won gold with her horse Valegro at the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games, and retired the mount following the 2016 Olympia Horse Show in London. Her trainer Carl Hester showed Valegro a couple of times as a four-year-old, but the horse proved difficult to handle until Dujardin began riding him. The horse was honoured with a statue in October 2020 at the International Centre for Birds of Prey in Newent, Gloucestershire, England. "Valegro was very, very hot as a young horse. I started riding him, and I never let Carl have him back. He was never naughty, just hot - he had all this power and he didn't know what to do with it. When you sit on a horse like that, it is amazing." (bbc.co.uk, 13 Dec 2016, 16 Nov 2015; horsemagazine.com, 21 Oct 2011; dailymail.co.uk, 03 Mar 2018; gloucestershirelive.co.uk, 27 Oct 2020)

She and her horse Mount St John Freestyle were disqualified from the 2019 European Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands, after traces of blood were found on the horse's flank. Judges accepted there was no intentional mistreatment of the horse. "It was a really horrible thing to have to go through, but it has made me a stronger person. At the end of the day, the rule is the rule. It was very difficult to deal with the social media side of things. I have been very fortunate in my career in that it has always gone upwards, but everyone has to deal with highs and lows." (bbc.co.uk, 12 Dec 2019)


At the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro her silver medal in team dressage and gold in individual dressage made her the first British equestrian to win three and four Olympic medals of any colour in dressage. (SportsDeskOnline, 01 Jun 2021)

At the 2012 Olympic Games in London she was part of the first British team, alongside Carl Hester and Laura Tomlinson, to win gold in dressage at an Olympic Games. At the 2012 Games she also became the first British equestrian to win individual gold in dressage, and, in conjunction with her team gold medal, this made her the first British equestrian to win more than one gold medal in dressage at an Olympic Games. (SportsDeskOnline, 01 Jun 2021)

Her victory at the 2014 World Cup Finals in Las Vegas, NV, United States of America, meant she became the first dressage rider to hold the World Cup, Olympic, world and European titles at the same time. (bbc.co.uk, 19 Apr 2015)
Bronze Medal
Gold Medal Event
Silver Medal Event
Bronze Medal Event
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