At the age of only 58, BN is sad to report the passing of former KWPN selection committee member and Dutch national dressage coach Wim Ernes. A kind and gentle international five-star dressage judge, Ernes became an icon in Dutch equestrian sport. Following a successful career with his own company, Wim Ernes chose to live his life and make his horse-world dreams come true. For many years his heart was with dressage breeding and the KWPN, then he became Dutch chef-d’equipe and dressage coach for the second time in his career in 2013 – opening a new era of unity and shared visions. Director of the Dutch Olympic Committee Maurits Hendriks said: “Dutch top sport loses another very special coach with his own personal style. His kind and open personality made him a powerful believer in sharing ideas, visions and motivation”.

For the Dutch equestrian Federation KNHS, as well as the International Equestrian Federation, Ernes’s ideas to better develop knowledge for dressage judges has been very worthwhile. In 2015, his national team won team dressage gold at the European Championships in Aachen, and his legacy also includes world and Olympic medals. Although Wim Ernes left the dressage selection committee of KWPN last year, his name is linked to several approved stallions, of whom the best known is Arlando (Paddox - Herlanda x Mytens xx). Suffering with a serious brain tumour, Ernes's deteriorating health forced him to pass his coaching reins to protegée Johan Rockx.

Our thoughts are with his wife and daughter at this sad time.