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AMERICAN-ISRAELI EQUESTRIAN ATHLETE DANIELLE GOLDSTEIN CHOSEN TO LEAD ISRAEL TO VICTORY AT 2013 MACCABIAH GAMES
GRAND PRIX STAR WILL SPEND FREE TIME LAYING GROUNDWORK FOR ISRAEL’S 2016 OLYMPIC RUN
(JERUSALEM, Israel – July 17, 2013) Award-winning American-Israeli show jumper Danielle Goldstein has been named the chef d’equipe, or team captain, of Team Israel’s equestrian squad for the upcoming Maccabiah Games, the 19th quadrennial international Jewish athletic event held in Israel under the auspices of the Maccabi Federation.
Though Goldstein, a resident of Florida, became an Israeli citizen in 2010 and has been competing for the “blue and white” in major international equestrian competitions since 2012, the Maccabiah Games will mark Goldstein’s first time representing Israel within its borders.
This year’s Maccabiah Games, scheduled for July 18-30, will include equestrian sports for the first time in the competition’s 81-year history. The equestrian portion of the games will be held at Kibbutz Yagur, a picturesque locale near Haifa where Goldstein and her 14 Israeli teammates will set up shop.
“I am very excited to be participating in my first Maccabiah Games and so honored to have been named the team’s captain. I have been waiting a long time for this opportunity – it is like a dream come true for me,” said Goldstein, who just finished her first European tour ranking among the world’s top show jumpers.
“I see the Maccabiah Games as the great unifier, an event that not only brings world-class Jewish athletes from the Diaspora back to the Jewish homeland, but one that encourages Jews from every corner of the globe to rally around Israel.”
Having garnered support from the Israeli Olympic Committee during her last visit to Israel in May, Goldstein hopes to spend whatever free time she will have during the next twelve days laying the groundwork for the first-ever Israeli Nations Cup Team, a group of professional equestrian athletes capable of competing at the international level and chasing down gold at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
“The sole purpose of ‘Team Israel’ will be to bring pride and positive attention to the State of Israel. This goal will be achieved through the success of a first-class equestrian team that will compete worldwide under the Israeli flag, and may even take a trip to the awards podium at the next Olympic Games,” explains Goldstein.
In addition to meetings with potential teammates and exploring sponsorship opportunities for ‘Team Israel’, Goldstein will be launching an awareness campaign for her efforts complete with a t-shirt designed by social activism group and clothing brand NU Campaign. Proceeds from the sale of the t-shirt, whose design illustrates the strength and vitality of the Israeli equestrian athlete, will benefit the Israeli Equestrian Federation.
While building ‘Team Israel’, Goldstein hopes to also plant the seeds for a robust equestrian culture in Israel by establishing an equestrian center to train the next generation of Israeli riders and a framework for increased equestrian education in Israel.
This year’s Maccabiah Games will include over 9,000 athletes representing 71 countries. In addition to Goldstein, notable athletes will include gymnast and Olympic Gold Medalist Aly Raisman and New York Knicks power forward Amar’e Stoudemire.
Danielle Goldstein rides for Israel
Professional show jumper Danielle Goldstein is well known on the national and international Grand Prix circuit. Danielle spent 15 years riding, training, and winning at the top of the show jumping sport as an amateur and junior competitor, before declaring her professional status in 2012. Danielle’s equestrian career has thrived under the tutelage of Olympians Frank Chapot, Norman Dello Joio, Todd Minikus and Lauren Hough.
A dual citizen of the USA and Israel, Danielle now rides for the Israeli show jumping team and has her sights set on becoming the first female Israeli show jumper to compete at the Olympic Games. The goal is realistic, as Danielle has been competing at the Grand Prix level for more than a decade and already has won two NAJYRC Gold Medals.
A graduate of Duke University, Danielle manages Starwyn Farms and has developed several innovative programs designed to contribute to the future of the sport.