The Iron Dames Equestrian Project is thrilled to announce that two promising young riders are joining the team. Founded with the goal of nurturing young talent and providing elite-level resources, Iron Dames is committed to supporting the growth and development of the next generation of equestrian stars.

Launched in September, Iron Dames Equestrian is a dynamic extension of the Iron Dames global project that has already left a notable mark in the world of motorsport. Founded by entrepreneur and racing driver Deborah Mayer, the project has consistently showcased a commitment to promoting women’s excellence in mixed sports. The launch of Iron Dames Equestrian is a natural progression of this pledge, as it seeks to create a platform for female riders to perform in the world of Equestrian.
In conjunction with the all-female elite team competing at the highest level in FEI competitions, including the Longines Global Champions Tour and Global Champions League from 2024, Iron Dames Equestrian will provide a dedicated space for the development and growth of promising young athletes. The project’s mission is not only to compete at the highest level but also to pave the way for the future stars of equestrian sports.

Today, on the occasion of the Holger Hetzel’s 18th International Sport Horse Sales, we are excited to introduce two exceptional young women who have joined the Iron Dames Equestrian project:

Anastasia Nielsen: [17 years old – MON] 2023 European Junior Champion
Laura Hetzel: [23 years old – GER] 6th place, 2023 German Young Rider Championship

These talented individuals are poised to embark on their journey with Iron Dames Equestrian and represent the future of women in equestrian sports. While being part of the Iron Dames team, Anastasia and Laura will benefit from world-class training, state-of-the-art facilities, access to an extensive network of equestrian experts and resources to help them reach their full potential, both as athletes and as role models in the equestrian world. With a focus on dedication, hard work, and a passion for the sport, Iron Dames aims to be at the forefront of equestrian excellence.

As a reminder, the riders already representing the Iron Dames are Natalie Dean [USA], Katrin Eckermann [GER], Janne Friederike Meyer-Zimmermann [GER], Sophie Hinners [GER], Kim Emmen [NED] and Sanne Thijssen [NED].

I warmly welcome Anastasia and Laura to the Iron Dames family. It is a pleasure to have them with us as they have displayed immense potential and dedication in the equestrian world. Their addition to the Iron Dames team is a testament to our commitment to fostering young talents and providing them with the necessary support and resources to reach their full potential. They represent the younger generation of talent that Iron Dames Equestrian aims to nurture and support. We are dedicated to empowering young women in sports and providing them with opportunities to shine in various disciplines. The Iron Dames Equestrian project is soundly underway, and we are looking forward to seeing our riders in action and helping them realise their dreams. 

Deborah Mayer, Iron Dames Project Founder

I feel very honoured and grateful to join the Iron Dames family. Im really looking forward to represent the younger generation in the equestrian world and to spend time, as well as to work with and learn from the other Iron Dames and professionals around us. I would like to say an Immense thank you to Deborah Mayer who is making all of this possible and I’m really excited about the future and what is to come.

Anastasia Nielsen

It is a great honour to have been selected for the Iron Dames project. Thanks to Deborah Mayer for the opportunity and trust she has placed in me. I will do my best to live up to the expectations. As well as expanding my skills and knowledge, I am thankful for all the support we get from the other experienced riders and the whole team around. I will work hard and do everything to be successful for the Iron Dames. I am very much looking forward to contributing.

Laura Hetzel


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