All posts by Associate Editor

Daniel Deusser Wins Trophée de Genève, the First Rolex Grand Prix Qualifier of CHI Geneva

Daniel Deusser riding Calisto Blue at the Trophée de Genève (Photo: Rolex Grand Slam / Kit Houghton)

The first qualifier for the Rolex Grand Prix saw nine horse and rider combinations compete in a hotly contested jump-off. Setting the bar high, Daniel Deusser riding Calisto Blue was the first to produce a clear round with a thrilling time of 37.31 seconds.

Last to go, Pieter Davos, looked on par to emulate Deusser’s clear round but was a fraction too slow and had to settle for second place, with Simon Delestre finishing in third, both excellent contenders for the Rolex Grand Prix on Sunday.

How did the course feel?

Daniel Deusser: The time was really tight in the first round so everybody was forced to ride forwards, and in the end the horses got quite long which accumulated a lot of faults. There were 10 combinations clear and a couple more with time faults, which is a good amount for a jump-off, but it was certainly not an easy class.

Going into the jump-off did you think you were in with a good chance?

Daniel Deusser: To be honest, I was not sure. There were a lot of fast combinations to compete against and I thought that one or two might be a little bit quicker, but I think my clear round put the pressure on and some of the horses were forced to go quicker which made them go a bit flat. I had a good round and was really pleased with my horse.

Looking ahead to the Rolex Grand Prix on Sunday, who do you think your biggest competition is?

Daniel Deusser: There are quite a few really good competitors here this weekend, so it is hard to say. I think McLain Ward and Clinta will go well, Steve Guerdat and Bianca are hard to beat when they are on form as well – it will be a good competition for sure.

© 2018 Rolex – Rolex Grand Slam

WIHS Creates Regional Horse Show Committee, Names Beezie Madden as Int’l Show Advisor

Beezie Madden (USA) and Breitling LS presented as winners of the $135,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Washington, presented by Events DC, by WIHS President Vicki Lowell. Photo by Jump Media.

Washington, D.C. – The Washington International Horse Show (WIHS) announces steps to build on the success of the 60th Anniversary Show by establishing a special committee for the WIHS Regional Horse Show and naming U.S. Olympic gold medalist Beezie Madden as the new WIHS International Show Advisor. WIHS is one of North America’s most prestigious and entertaining equestrian events and will celebrate 61 years on October 22-27, 2019, at the Capital One Arena in downtown Washington, D.C.

The WIHS Regional Horse Show, also host to the USHJA Zone 3 Championships, is held at the Prince George’s Equestrian Center in Upper Marlboro, MD on October 18-20, 2019. The WIHS Regional Committee will be chaired by WIHS Board Member Judy Bishop and will comprise members from the Zone 3 Committee, Zone 3 trainers, and WIHS staff members. Committee members include:

  • Judy Bishop – Chair
  • Alan Lohman – Zone 3 Committee Representative
  • Streett Moore – Zone 3 Committee Representative
  • Rachel Kennedy – Zone 3 Professional
  • Tracy Magness – Zone 3 Professional
  • Lara McPherson – WIHS Staff Representative
  • Elizabeth Mellen – WIHS Staff Representative
  • Tom Blankenship – WIHS Regional Horse Show Manager

The goal of the committee is to further elevate and enhance the overall exhibitor experience of the WIHS Regional Horse Show through sponsorship, hospitality, and other improvements. The committee will seek feedback and input from exhibitors and make recommendations to the WIHS Board of Directors.

Beezie Madden, the winner of the 2018 Longines/FEI World Cup Jumping Washington and the reigning FEI Jumping World Cup Finals champion, will review the International Jumper division schedule working closely with Show Manager David Distler and make recommendations to ensure WIHS continues to be a top event on the international jumping calendar.

“It is our collective goal to keep both the downtown event and the regional show at Prince George’s Equestrian Center as premier championship competitions on the calendar that riders of all levels aspire to compete at each year,” said WIHS President Victoria Lowell. “WIHS is a special event that has a storied history, which takes commitment from staff and volunteers to ensure it continues as a strong and successful event for years to come. As the last remaining U.S. indoor show in a major metropolitan sporting arena, it is critical we remain focused on creating the best experience possible for horses, competitors, and spectators. I would like to thank these important volunteers for stepping up to help us continue bringing horses to downtown D.C. and recognizing the importance of our regional competition as well.”

For more information on WIHS, please visit www.wihs.org.

Grade 1 Winner Wake Forest and New York Champ Kharafa Retire to Old Friends

Wake Forest checks out his new digs (Old Friends Farm Photos)

GEORGETOWN, KY – DECEMBER 3, 2018 – Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement facility in Georgetown, KY, announced the arrival of two new notable retirees: Grade 1 winner Wake Forest and stakes winner Kharafa.

Wake Forest was a Group 3 winner in Germany before relocating to trainer Chad Brown’s barn in 2015 for owners Michael Dubb, Sol Kumin and his Sheep Pond Partners, and Bethlehem Stables. In his third North American start, Wake Forest captured the Grade 1 Man o’ War Stakes and went on to win the Grade 2 Mac Diarmida Stakes in 2017.

This past July, the bay son of Sir Percy (GB) went on the block at Fasig-Tipton where he sold for $90,000. Under new ownership he began dropping down the claiming ranks. On November 24th at Gulfstream Park West he ran for a tag of $8,000 and finished ninth of 11 starters.

It was to be his final start, as former owner Dubb stepped up to claim the 8-year-old horse for retirement.  After 28 starts and eight wins, Wake Forest completed his career with earnings of $951,745.

Trained by Timothy Hill for owners Paul Braverman and Timothy Pinch, New York-bred warrior Kharafa finished out his career after 52 starts in eight seasons.  A star of the NYRA circuit, Kharafa captured multiple runnings of the Ashley T. Cole Stakes and the Kingston Stakes at Belmont Park, as well as Aqueduct’s Three Coins Up Stakes.

This August, the 9-year-old was the unexpected star of Saratoga’s New York Showcase Day after capturing the $150,000 West Point Stakes to the delight of his fans.  The win brought Kharafa’s career earnings to $1,238. 622.

Since 2013, Kharafa had become a huge fan favorite thanks to a sensational rivalry with fellow state-bred turfers Lubash and King Kreesa. As fate would have it, all three are now retired at Old Friends in Georgetown.

“It’s a banner day here,” said Old Friends founder Michael Blowen. “Wake Forest is the sweetest most beautiful horse, and it’s such a thrill to reunite Kharafa with his famous rivals. We hope all their fans will come to visit them,” Blowen added. “We are so thankful to their respective connections for trusting us with these two beloved champs.”

For more information, contact the main farm at (502) 863-1775 or visit www.oldfriendsequine.org.

Abigail McArdle Victorious in $50k USEF U25 National Show Jumping Championship with Victorio 5

Abigail McArdle and Victorio 5. Photo Credit ©AnneGittinsPhotography.

Wellington, FL – December 3, 2018 – Abigail McArdle (Barrington, IL) maintained her lead to take the title after a double-clear performance in the final day of the USEF U25 National Show Jumping Championship at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC), piloting Victorio 5, a 2006 Hanoverian stallion (Uccello x Graefin) owned by Victorio Equine Group LLC, to the top and besting a field of 15. North Salem, NY native Mattias Tromp had one rail down in the first round of Finals competition but countered with a fault-free score of 70.73 seconds in round two with Eyecatcher, a 2009 Dutch Warmblood mare (Harley VDL x Ninewood) owned by Beyaert Farm Inc., to improve his rank by one and claim reserve honors on the week. Samantha Cohen of New York, NY entered round two on just two penalties with her own Carmen, a 2007 Dutch Warmblood mare (Whitesnake x Wanado), and finished the day on a four-fault score of 74.05 seconds to be recognized with third place. The $25,000 USEF U25 National Show Jumping Championship Class 3 welcomed back the top twelve pairs for the second round in order to discern the day’s winners, influencing the weeklong results as well.

The course design by Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA) “asked all the questions,” said McArdle, who has finished on the podium twice prior at the USEF U25 National Show Jumping Championship. “This is actually my third year competing. Every year I’ve had a great horse and it felt like it was just my time. I was ready to win it. I have a lot of belief in this horse right now and I sort of walked into this week knowing I was going to win,” she recalled.

“It’s not at all like a normal show, where you jump a few classes or do your round and then get ready for the grand prix,” McArdle said of the multi-day format. “It asks different questions of your horse. If they’re tired because they’ve jumped a lot of rounds, it’s hard for them to jump that many clean rounds. You also had to go fast – it’s a lot.”

Runner-up Tromp touched on the importance of the U25 division for up-and-coming riders like himself, saying, “I think this division gives the opportunity for younger riders to compete in a championship format that I think will be very important later on in our careers. I think it’s also a great place for us to develop as riders, and also some younger grand prix horses also fit very nicely into this division.

“I think the hardest part is the first day because it’s faults-converted,” Tromp elaborated. “And although the format is done that way so that a good rider can still be in it if they have a rail down, the reality is there are very fast riders involved. I think going into several days of competition it can undo a horse very quickly, so I think as riders we have to be conscious of our horses – yes, we have to ride fast because it’s a faults-converted format, but we can’t undo the horses, either, so that they’re rushing at fences the rest of the week.”

Cohen agreed, “After the first day with Carmen, I had to do a lot of work on the flat before Friday’s class to kind of reel her back in, because I really made her go the first day and she was at the end of stride. I think remaining consistent is definitely a challenge through all of the rounds – it’s really not over until you’ve jumped the last jump.”

But for Cohen, the week’s youngest competitor, the pressure of a national championship was not a hindrance, and might have pushed her to perform at a higher level, she revealed. “Being on Carmen, the pressure doesn’t really get to me as much because I’m so confident on her, and she really never puts a foot wrong in the ring. This summer I’ve gotten to jump a lot of big classes with her and in a couple of pressure situations, and she’s really helped me out. Sometimes pressure helps me ride better, and I just try to block everything out and just focus on myself and my horse. When I’m on a horse like her, the pressure never seems too bad,” she concluded.

For more information, please visit www.pbiec.com.

Isabell Werth and Weihegold Old Back to Top FEI Dressage World Rankings

Isabell Werth (GER) and Weihegold Old. (FEI/ Leanjo de Koster)

Olympic silver individual and gold team medallist duo, Isabell Werth and Weihegold Old, have topped the FEI Dressage World Rankings once again (2742 points), following their win in the Grand Prix and the Grand Prix Freestyle to Music at the Sweden International Horse Show (“Saab Top Ten Dressage 2018”) in Stockholm (SWE). The famous combination, who were number one for almost two years, from November 2016, only sat in second place for a couple of months behind Laura Graves and Verdades (USA). The American duo now drop back to second place again with 2714 points.

Dressage Queen Isabell Werth can be found three times in the top four of the ranking list, as she holds the third place with Bella Rose 2 (2690 points) and the fourth place with Emilio 107 (2658 points).

A number of other combinations moved up in the rankings, thanks to the Saab Top Ten Dressage 2018 and the FEI Dressage World Cup™ qualifier in Madrid (ESP) on 23-25 November 2018. Patrik Kittel with Delaunay Old (SWE) moved from the 97th to the 11th place (2280 points), whilst Daniel Bachmann Andersen and Blue Hors Zepter (DEN) jumped from the 175th to the 33rd place (2030 points). Claudio Castilla Ruiz and Alcaide (ESP) also made an enormous leap from the 118th to the 43rd place (1923 points).

With the FEI Dressage World Cup™ season continuing over the next few months there will certainly be more impressive changes in the ranking list.

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager, Media Relations and Media Operations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Olga Nikolaou
Media Relations Officer
olga.nikolaou@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 56

CHI Geneva Welcomes Leading Riders to Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final and Rolex Grand Prix

03 December 2018, Geneva, Switzerland – Held from 6-9 December, the 2018 edition of the CHI Geneva will include two of the pre-eminent equestrian competitions, namely the Rolex International Jumping Riders Club (IJRC) Top 10 Final and the Rolex Grand Prix, the fourth and final Major of the year in the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. The highest-ranking international riders will compete at the famous Palexpo venue, the largest indoor show jumping arena in the world.

This year’s show also features the Youth Challenge, an innovative contest introduced in 2017, giving four juniors and four young equestrians, riding four young Swiss-bred horses, the chance to compete against four of the world’s top riders, including Rolex Testimonee Jeroen Dubbeldam. In last year’s competition, the established champions had to work hard to outperform the Under-21s to win the jump-off.

ROLEX GRAND PRIX

Geneva, a city with a strong equestrian heritage and home to Swiss watchmaker Rolex, is the ideal setting for the final Major of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, the CHI Geneva Rolex Grand Prix. World-renowned course designers Gérard Lachat (SUI) and Louis Konickx (NED) have ensured a challenging circuit for the top horse and rider combinations.

Each of the Majors has a long tradition of sporting excellence. As a long-term partner to all four – The Dutch Masters, CHIO Aachen, the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters,’ and the CHI Geneva – Rolex appreciates the significance of the Grand Slam and has been honoured to be its exclusive partner since 2013.

In contention for the Grand Slam title is Egypt’s Sameh El Dahan, who took top honours at Spruce Meadows in September. Exultant after winning the event’s CP ‘International,’ presented by Rolex, the third Major of the year, El Dahan will attempt to finish his equestrian year on a high by winning a second consecutive Major at the CHI Geneva. “I’m thrilled to have won a Major in the Grand Slam and I will now be concentrating all my efforts on the CHI Geneva,” El Dahan said.

CONTENDING ROLEX TESTIMONEES

With many Rolex Testimonees participating in the Rolex Grand Prix, El Dahan will face challenging opposition.

Steve Guerdat will try for his fourth title, following wins in 2006, 2013 and 2015. The Swiss rider has been in top form this year, claiming individual bronze at the World Equestrian Games in North Carolina in September and winning the Rolex Grand Prix at CHI Royal Windsor Horse Show in May. “Competing in my home country is fantastic, and as part of the Rolex Grand Slam, the Rolex Grand Prix at the CHI Geneva is particularly significant – I will be giving it my all,” Guerdat says. Also contending will be fellow countryman Martin Fuchs, who joined the Rolex family this year and most recently earned individual silver at the World Equestrian Games.

Vying for the title will also be the defending champion Kent Farrington (USA) aiming to emulate his spectacular 2017 win at the Geneva event.

Hoping to compete in the Grand Prix will be Frenchman Kevin Staut and Scotsman Scott Brash, both of whom have claimed victory at Geneva in previous years. Looking to join the line-up will also include Rolex’s youngest Testimonee Bertram Allen (IRE), as well as fellow Testimonees Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum (GER) and Jeroen Dubbeldam (NED).

ROLEX IJRC TOP 10 FINAL

Only the top 10 riders are invited to compete in the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final, which will be held on Friday 7 December. A concept similar to the ATP World Finals in tennis, also supported by Rolex, the Top 10 Final is the only contest run by the competitors, through the IJRC. Rolex has been Title Sponsor of the event since its inception in 2001. This year will be the 18th edition, with CHI Geneva hosting for the 14th time.

Rolex Testimonee and 2010 champion Steve Guerdat will be looking to regain his title in 2018. Whilst Rolex’s newest Testimonee Martin Fuchs will be contending for the very first time, endeavouring to finish his magnificent year on a high by achieving victory.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Virginie Chevailler
Rolex SA
virginie.chevailler@rolex.com
+41 (0)22 302 2619

Merrick Haydon
rEvolution
mhaydon@revolutionworld.com
+44 (0)7748 186 833

Margie Engle and Royce Dominate $205,000 Holiday & Horses Grand Prix CSI 4*

Margie Engle and Royce. Photo Credit ©AnneGittinsPhotography.

Wellington, FL – December 1, 2018 – Margie Engle (USA) and Royce dashed to a well-deserved victory in the $205,000 Holiday & Horses Grand Prix CSI 4* presented by Palm Beach County Sports Commission at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). Engle and Royce were the only pair to finish the evening with a double clear effort, securing their win ahead of Susan Horn (CAN) and Lillyfee, who captured second place with a time of 60.14 seconds in the jump-off. Eduardo Menezes (BRA) and H5 Quintol rounded out the top three placings with four faults and a time of 49.32 seconds.

Engle and Royce are a notorious pair on the international competition circuit and with their win this evening, concluded one of their best seasons together yet as a partnership. Engle and Royce looked in top form, besting a class of 37 entries, finishing faultless in both the first round and the jump-off. The course, designed by Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA), saw rails fall throughout class and proved difficult for most entries.

“He’s been showing lightly for the last few months and has really only done big shows, probably for the whole year. I think this is only his second show that wasn’t a CSI 5*,” explained Engle. “I’ve been able to save him a little bit with Dicas coming up and the young ones. He’s quite fresh.”

Emphasizing their attentiveness to flatwork over the past few seasons, Engle commented that their efforts are beginning to pay off in the ring, as Royce’s rideability has drastically improved as a result of their commitment to dressage work.

“It’s nice because he’s been home for a little over a month and Lisa Wilcox helps work with him on the flat and whenever she works with him, he goes that much nicer,” she chuckled. “She helps me with the flatwork with quite a few of the Grand Prix horses. She does an unbelievable job and it makes my job that much easier.”

The duo is concluding a banner year together, which featured top results in nearly each of the major international competition they attended. With her new mount, Dicas, on the rise, the balance it has provided for Engle works in Royce’s favor.

“He’s felt great all week. Earlier in the week I was able to do him in the smaller class. I did the 1.45m and he was double clean and jumped great. I was able to save him and use Dicas in the qualifier and Royce jumped great under the lights and fresh. I honestly think he jumped better in the jump-off. The more I started kicking him at the jumps the higher he got.”

While the pair has been a staple combination for the United States for the past few years, Engle feels that her and Royce are beginning to hit their peak as a pair, both growing together and developing a much stronger bond in the past twelve months.

“He’s really matured. I know it sounds funny, but we’ve both matured a little late together. He’s just starting to get the rideability so nice. He’s getting more manageable and he’s really become seasoned and it’s made my job quite a bit easier. He’s always had the jump and been super careful, super powerful, but we lacked in the rideability, but now he’s riding nice so it makes my job easy.”

The two-round format of the class brought the top twelve combinations back to contest the short course and Engle knew that she sat in an enviable position with Royce heading into their final round.

“I knew going into it that there was only one more behind me that was clean and the one ahead of me that was clean had one down. I know Marilyn [Little] is very fast with Clearwater and I had better take a shot, so that even if I had one down, I’d at least get a good piece of it. I was just going to go medium fast, but the further we got around course the better he felt, so I just went with it. It felt like he was getting into so I went with it and keep going.”

For more information on PBIEC and the ESP Holiday Series, please visit www.pbiec.com.

Margie Engle Dashes to First in $35,000 Dever Golf Cars 1.45m Classic CSI 4*

Margie Engle and Dicas. Photo Credit ©AnneGittinsPhotography.

Wellington, FL – November 30, 2018 – Margie Engle (USA) flew to first place in the $35,000 Dever Golf Cars 1.45m Classic CSI 4* with her mount, Dicas, at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). The swift duo halted the timers in 57.52 seconds to ensure top honors. Engle and Dicas, a 2009 Rhenish Warmblood gelding (Diarado x Cassini I) owned by Storm Ridge Capital LLC, Show Horses, Garber & Gladewinds, Inc., took home the win in their final competition for the year. Also representing the USA, Kristen Vanderveen earned second place with Bull Run’s Faustino De Tili, a 2005 Belgian Warmblood stallion (Berlin x Darco) owned by Bull Run Jumpers Five LLC. Vanderveen completed the course in 57.77 seconds. Todd Minikus (USA) merited third place riding Amex Z, a 2009 Zangersheide mare (Andiamo Z x Landaris) owned by Bit by Bit Group, with a time of 58.86 seconds.

Jumping against 33 pairs, Engle’s speed and accuracy resulted in first place in the course set by Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA) with her attentive and willing mount. “It was his last class of the year, so he gets a couple of months off now. He’s a young horse and just started moving up the FEI levels this year. I figured I would give it a shot since it’s his last class and now he gets a nice, well-earned vacation.

“He’s a big horse, but he’s gotten quicker and quicker as the years progressed. He’s really fun and he’s been consistent. He’s easy to ride even though he’s really large. He’s got quick thinking and turns quick, so he’s really nice and easy. He’s always really game,” she said.

“I think [it was] the rollback to fence 3 [that] was a big oxer off of a tight turn, but he handled it really well. He just turned well and fortunately everything came up nice and easy off the turns. He’s very trusting and kind of young. He’s kind of naive in trusting in a good way so far, so as long as I don’t do anything to break his trust, then whatever I ask him to do he’ll give it a shot,” concluded Engle.

For more information on PBIEC and the ESP Holiday Series, please visit www.pbiec.com.

Charity Selection for Great Charity Challenge to Take Place throughout Palm Beach County

Wellington, FL – November 29, 2018 – With over 360 applications received for the chance to participate in the 2019 Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments® (GCC), this year’s annual charity selection will take place throughout Palm Beach County between Friday, November 30 and Saturday, December 8, 2018. A total of 24 charities will be randomly drawn and earn a spot in the highly anticipated 10th annual GCC to be held on Saturday, February 2, 2019, for a chance to win up to $150,000!

In years past, the drawing of the charities took place at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). This new selection format will bring the community closer and highlight some of the individuals who make the GCC a reality. Joining Paige Bellissimo, co-founder of the GCC, will be Wellington Mayor Anne Gerwig and Vice Mayor Michael Drahos, as well as Village Council members Michael Napoleone, Tanya Siskind, and John McGovern; Palm Beach County Mayor Melissa McKinlay; several team and corporate sponsors of the event; local news anchor Roxanne Stein; a live appearance on WPTV; and a visit to Wellington’s Winterfest on Friday, December 7, 2018. To guarantee full transparency in the selection process, all drawings will be posted via Facebook: www.facebook.com/greatcharitychallenge.

The GCC is an exciting pro-am show jumping event that brings together over 30 equestrian families and companies as they sponsor a competing team for $25,000 and $10,000, respectively. Each team is assigned to compete for one of the randomly selected charities, offering amateur riders the chance to compete side-by-side with their Olympic and world-class professional equestrian heroes and role models. With additional donations from local families, businesses, sponsors, vendors, exhibitors, and spectators, the 2019 GCC is on track to fundraise and distribute over $1 million in Palm Beach County. Prize money for participating charities will range from $150,000 to $15,000, ensuring that every charity is a winner.

Mark Bellissimo, CEO of Equestrian Sport Productions, LLC, and co-founder of the Great Charity Challenge with his daughter Paige, commented, “We look forward to kick-starting our 2019 season with this initiative. We hope that the GCC will become the legacy of our partnership and this facility. This year’s list of applicants is truly inspiring. They work tirelessly to make Palm Beach County a better place – we are very grateful for them!”

Paige Bellissimo added, “The GCC is a unique event that allows us to raise awareness of the diverse charitable organizations throughout the community. We hope that this year’s edition will unite all involved, from the sponsors and riders, to the nonprofits involved and the community at large! We are very grateful for those who support the effort.”

PBIEC is home to the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), the largest and longest running horse show in the world. WEF will run January 9 through March 31, 2019. Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP), the PBIEC operating organization that oversees equestrian events at the venue throughout the year, donates the facility, staff, and infrastructure to ensure the success of the charitable event.

Mark your calendars for the 2019 Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments® to be held on Saturday, February 2, 2019, at the PBIEC during the Winter Equestrian Festival’s popular “Saturday Night Lights” series. This family-friendly event offers free general admission and parking. With riders dressed up in costumes and horses adorned to match them, this year’s theme of “We Are the World” will focus on promoting unity and celebrate the cultural differences in our community.

Future charity drawings will be held at random during the first weeks of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival and the final two wild card teams will be drawn the night of the GCC on Saturday, February 2, 2019.

For the latest event information and application guidelines, visit www.greatcharitychallenge.com and learn more about the GCC on Facebook at www.facebook.com/greatcharitychallenge.

Inside the CHI Geneva: The Elite Contenders for the Rolex Grand Prix

Steve Guerdat riding Alamo (Photo: Rolex / Ashley Neuhof)

From 6-9 December 2018, more than 40,000 spectators are set to flock to the Swiss city for the 58th edition of the CHI Geneva, the final Major of the year. Taking place in the Palexpo, which at 5,200 m2 is the largest indoor arena in world, visitors can expect to be thoroughly entertained at an event that has won the Best Equestrian Sports Show Worldwide award no less than nine times.

Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping Rider Watch

With several prolific horse and rider combinations set to compete in the Rolex Grand Prix at the CHI Geneva, there are a whole host of contenders who will undoubtedly be among the discussion as to who will be crowned champion in this historic Rolex Major.

A hot favourite to claim the title this year is the current Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping live contender, Sameh El Dahan. The Egyptian rider clinched victory at the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ in Calgary riding Suma’s Zorro, and will be tipped by many to continue his fine form in Switzerland. With a potential €500,000 bonus for winning two Majors successfully, Sameh will be doing his utmost to repeat his performance in Canada.

Never far from success is Rolex Testimonee Steve Guerdat, who currently sits at second in the World Official Jumping Rankings. Being a Swiss rider competing in Geneva, Guerdat is likely to be well supported, and when combined with his unquestioned ability, it would be a surprise if he is not one of the top performers in the competition, especially given that he has already won the Rolex Grand Prix on three occasions.

© 2018 Rolex – Rolex Grand Slam