Category Archives: Driving

Christmas Comes Early for Holly in the Cayenne Puissance

Olympia, the London International Horse Show had crowds sat on the edge of their seats, as the Cayenne Puissance took flight. Holly Smith (GBR) and Christopher Megahey (IRL) both went clear in the 5th round to take home the title in front of HRH The Duchess of Cornwall. Olympic Gold Medallist Nick Skelton, was also in attendance as he took part in a Q&A session with some lucky fans.

Holly Smith, who had never ridden in a puissance competition until this year, and the teenager from Ireland, Christopher Megahey, 18, a first-timer at Olympia, The London International Horse Show, shared the spoils in a thrilling finale to the Cayenne Puissance.

With The Duchess of Cornwall, who was paying her annual visit to the show, looking on, the pair both cleared 7ft 1in in the fifth and final round.

Holly (nee Gillott), riding the huge bay Irish sport horse Quality Old Joker, showed all her experience from the hunting field, saw the perfect stride and cleared the massive wall in superb style.

But then the young Irishman matched her for nerve and pinged over on another Irish-bred horse, his brother’s former eventer Seapatrick Cruise Cavalier, in a result that will thrill fans of horses from the Emerald Isle.

Norwegian rider Rebekka Lie Andersen finished third, having retired in the third round on Want To Do, and Britain’s Laura Renwick, who withdrew from the third round, was fourth on Top Dollar Vl.

“It’s fantastic,” said Holly, 27. “All my friends are here to watch. I tried to treat it as a normal show, but it’s just got such an amazing atmosphere. The first three rounds didn’t actually go that well, but then I managed to see a forward stride in the fourth and he jumped brilliantly.”

Christopher was equally thrilled. “I loved it – it didn’t faze me at all. It’s just brilliant being here, being around top riders like Marcus Ehning and Scott Brash.”

Earlier on in the day the Stephex Stables enjoyed a fantastic start to the show, with its riders claiming the first two international Show Jumping classes.

The initial victory came from Germany’s Daniel Deusser, who took the Santa Stakes with nine-year-old stallion Hidalgo VG.

“It’s great to start with a win as it gives you confidence for the rest of show,” said Daniel, who beat 11 rivals in the jump off and relegated Britain’s Ben Maher (Don Vito) to second.

Italian rider Lorenzo De Luca took the Christmas Pudding Stakes, a speed class, riding Halifax van het Kluizebos, one of the Belgium operation’s nine-year-old stallions.

“He’s a very good horse now, having continued to improve and become more competitive in bigger classes,” said Lorenzo, who is an Olympia first-timer. “Getting the invitation to compete here was a dream come true,” he said. “To win on the first day is just fantastic.”

Preceding the first round of the FEI World Cup™ competition, the Dodson & Horrell Extreme Driving at Olympia saw all seven competitors representing five countries. But it was the world’s leading driver, current reigning World Champion both indoors and out, Boyd Exell (AUS), who snatched victory.

Over a challenging course set by course designer, Johan Jacobs from the Netherlands, Exell was the last to go in the first round and was fastest at the midway point. However, the brakes locked on his carriage as he drove over the bridge in the centre of the arena, making for a difficult turn into the first gate of the second obstacle. A resulting knockdown gave him penalties and put him into third place behind Koos de Ronde from The Netherlands and Jozsef Dobrovitz from Hungary. Dobrovitz, whose son is also competing in the competition, was the only driver to post a clear round at this stage, giving him the top slot.

In the second round, in which the top three placed drivers compete again for first to third place, Exell set the bar high with an excellent round despite one knockdown. Even with 5 penalties added the other two were unable to better his score and he claimed the win again, repeating last year’s success in this competition.

“I’ll be making a few changes in my team for the World Cup competition tomorrow,” Exell remarked. “But today’s competition was outstanding. This Show produces an amazing atmosphere and really allows us to showcase our sport. To compete to such an enthusiastic crowd and a full house spurs us all on.”

Course designer Jacobs commented, “I expect all the drivers to make fewer mistakes tomorrow – there are always difficulties in the first competition. They will be competing over a different course although the obstacles are in the same place – I don’t plan to make it any trickier than today though!”

Along with the evening’s Show Jumping and the Dodson & Horrell Extreme Driving, a special presentation took place as Tim Wilks was awarded the Raymond Brooks-Ward Memorial Trophy, presented to young riders demonstrating potential for future success in the forthcoming season.

The Kennel Club ABC Dog Agility Final thrilled the crowd, but Jo Gleed and her dog Bonvivant With Extra Zoom were too quick for fellow four-legged competitors to clinch the victory.

Olympic champion Nick Skelton spent the day being feted by journalists and the crowd, who will no doubt be voting in their thousands for him on Sunday night in BBC Sports Personality of the Year. Speaking of his Olympic Gold Medal, Nick said, “I never thought it would happen – I’d tried and failed so many times, but I think it means more to me winning a gold medal at my age than it would have done if I was younger.”

For more information, please contact:
Gayle Telford, Revolution Sports + Entertainment
gayle@revolutionsports.co.uk
0203 176 0355
www.olympiahorseshow.com

Ninth Victory for Boyd Exell in Geneva

Boyd Exell (FEI /Dirk Caremans)

Geneva (SUI), 11 December 2016 – In a thrilling competition in which Boyd Exell (AUS) was put under pressure by Georg von Stein (GER), Boyd put the accelerator on and claimed his 9th consecutive victory at the FEI World Cup™ Driving in Geneva. Von Stein finished in second place, while József Dobrovitz jr. (HUN) picked up important World Cup points by finishing in third place.

Dutch level 4 Course Designer Johan Jacobs had laid out a nice and fluent course in the very large arena in Geneva, where the beautiful water splash and the hill always ensure spectacular images. The Ground Jury included a former fellow four-in-hand driver; Swiss level 2 Driving Judge Daniel Würgler, who won the inaugural edition of the CAI-W Geneva in 2002.

The second round took place over an altered course and the drivers started from scratch. Dobrovitz jr. was first to go, but he lost precious seconds: “I wanted to go fast to put the pressure on, but in the second marathon obstacle I turned too slow and I lost time. I wanted to go even faster to make up for it and I turned onto the bridge too fast, so I had a knock down. I became a little tired and lost concentration, which caused another two balls to fall. But I am very happy with my top three place!”

Next driver in the arena, Georg von Stein, put the pressure on Boyd by driving a fast and clear round. The reigning German Champion finished third in Stuttgart where he competed with a wild card and now took home his first World Cup points of this season: “I have a very fast team; especially on the long lines, I can make up a lot of time. I have watched the videos of the first competition and I learnt that my turns in the obstacles cost much time, so I know what I have to work on.”

The many enthusiastic spectators in the Palexpo arena held their breath when last starter Boyd Exell had one knock down, but the four-times World Champion passed the finish line 10 seconds faster than Von Stein and secured his 9th win in Geneva since he first won in 2008: “I have been helping Georg lately to make his team better, so on the one hand I was pleased for him, but on the other hand I really felt the pressure. At the split time I was four seconds up, but then I had that ball, which was really a driver mistake. I turned my wheeler horse too fast into the obstacle. But I made up time in that very same obstacle and in the last part of the course.”

Home driver Jérôme Voutaz finished in fourth place with his team of fast turning Freiberger horses, ahead of József Dobrovitz (HUN) and wild card drivers Benjamin Aillaud (FRA), driving a team of beautiful Lusitano’s and Werner Ulrich (SUI). For Ulrich, Geneva was his last competition as four-in-hand driver. The 57-year-old very successful Swiss competitor retires from the four-in-hand sport, but will continue as a pair driver and trainer.

For the complete results, click here.

The FEI World Cup™ Driving competition in London Olympia will be broadcast live on FEI TV, the FEI’s official video platform, on Saturday, 17 December at 17.30 hrs. CET (local time in Switzerland, GMT+1 hour).

For information on London Olympia, go to www.olympiahorseshow.com or contact Press Officer Jo Peck, jopeck@hpower.co.uk, + 44 1753 847 900.

For more information on FEI World Cup™ Driving, please check the FEI website.

By Cindy Timmer

FEI Media Contacts:
Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

At Geneva:
Corinne Druey
druey@syntagme-lausanne.ch
+41 21 312 82 22

World’s Best Riders Set to Compete at Olympia, The London International Horse Show

Olympia, The London International Horse Show, will host 10 Olympic gold medallists who will be providing top class sporting action across the seven days of competition.

From the world of Show Jumping, five of the top 10 riders from across the globe, including former World No.1s, Germany’s Daniel Deusser and Switzerland’s Steve Guerdat, will be under one roof to compete at the UK’s premier indoor horse show. Carl Hester, gold medallist from London 2012 and silver medallist in Rio 2016, will be heading up Team GB’s dressage entries. The sporting excitement does not end there, with the three-time World Champion, Boyd Exell, returning to wow the crowds with his Carriage Driving skills.

SHOWJUMPING

Olympia’s Show Jumping competition will have a dazzling array of first-class riders set to take centre stage during a week of unmissable competition.

Britain’s most renowned riders are, once again, congregating in London for five days of competition including the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Leg presented by H&M and the Olympia Grand Prix. London 2012 team gold medallists Scott Brash and Ben Maher will be joined by rising Team GB star Jessica Mendoza, as well as William Funnell, Laura Renwick and Olympia newcomer Anna Power. Reigning Olympia Grand Prix Champion, Michael Whitaker, returns alongside his brother John Whitaker. Competing for the younger generation of the Whitaker family, Jack Whitaker lines up for the Dodson & Horrell and the World Class Programme Under 23 Championship.

The Brits will be rivalled by a strong international contingent including the current Olympic team gold medallists from France, Kevin Staut and Penelope Leprevost who are currently ranked World Nos. 8 and 9, respectively, alongside team mate Philippe Rozier. The German challengers will mount a strong opposition with World No. 3 Daniel Deusser, hoping to add another World Cup™ victory to his 2016 tally, appearing alongside his compatriots, Marcus Ehning and Marco Kutscher.

Peder Fredricson, individual silver medallist in Rio, and Steve Guerdat, individual gold medallist in London, will also feature amongst the leading riders. 2008 Beijing team gold medallist Laura Kraut, will be joined by Edwina Tops-Alexander and team silver medallist Malin Baryard-Johnsson to add further strength to the depth of the field.

DRESSAGE

On the evenings of the 13 and 14 December, the FEI World Cup™ Dressage supported by Horse & Hound comes the Olympia Exhibition Hall with eight Rio Olympians taking part.

Setting the standard will be Great Britain’s Carl Hester, aboard his Olympic medal winning partner Nip Tuck, who will be hoping to repeat his 2015 winning performance in the FEI World Cup™ Dressage Freestyle to Music supported by Horse & Hound. Competing against him will be fellow London 2012 Olympic team gold medallist, Laura Tomlinson, who will be attending Olympia as a final competition before she goes on maternity leave, and leading Dutch riders, reigning World Cup™ Champion, Hans Peter Minderhoud and Edward Gal.

Representing Ireland will be Judy Reynolds, who currently holds the highest Grand Prix score by any Irish rider in international competition. Olympia will be seeing a new face as Japan’s Akane Kuroki will be attending for the first time, after making her international debut at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

CARRIAGE DRIVING

Olympia is set to provide an exhilarating display of skill, as the World’s best carriage drivers storm the arena.

Current World Champion Boyd Exell will be returning to the Olympia Grand Hall, armed with a team of horses to battle for the number one spot. Great Britain’s Dan Naprous will be contending against Boyd, pulling out all the stops in an endeavour to achieve first place position.

For more information, please contact:
Olympia, The London International Horse Show:
Gayle Telford, gayle@revolutionsports.co.uk 0203 176 0355

Superb Start for Koos de Ronde in Budapest

Koos de Ronde (FEI/Krisztina Hajdu)

Budapest (HUN), 4 December 2016 – Dutch four-in-hand driver Koos de Ronde experienced a superb start of his FEI World Cup™ Driving season in Budapest. The bronze medallist of the World Championships in Breda set the fastest times in the third leg of this season’s series and won the competition with seven seconds advantage to home driver József Dobrovitz and Belgium’s Edouard Simonet.

After one year of absence, the FEI World Cup™ Driving leg in Budapest joined the series again, much to the joy of the Hungarian driving fans, who attended the exciting competition in the Lászlo Papp arena. This year, the programme existed of a show of the famous Spanish Riding School in Vienna, followed by the FEI World Cup™ Driving class. The spectators were treated to a great competition where the six drivers battled it out in the course, laid out by Hungarian top course designer Gábor Fintha.

Koos de Ronde had an advantage of six seconds going into the second round, which took place over the same course. Despite the heavy footing, his experienced team of mixed bay horses went even faster and was eight seconds faster than József Dobrovitz in the end: “This is the best thing about the sport. Dobrovitz drove a very good round and I had to try to top this. I knew that if I had one knock down, I could lose my advantage, so I really went for it!” De Ronde’s plan is to pick up World Cup points as well in London Olympia and try some new wheeler horses in Mechelen (BEL) where he will compete with a wild card.

József Dobrovitz, who lives around the corner from Budapest in Vecsés, used two new horses in his team, but this didn’t keep him from driving some excellent clear rounds: “I used a new horse in the right lead which I’ve only had for four days, and has never been to a competition before,” laughed Dobrovitz. “And also a new horse in the right wheel, but this one has been in a pair before.” The member of the silver team in Breda went even faster in the second round and put some extra pressure on De Ronde: “I wanted to go faster, but I also needed to keep concentrating, especially with these two new horses. It worked out very well for me and I am very pleased that I have taken the decision to use them.”

Edouard Simonet’s tactics were to improve as much as he could, compared to the first competition, and he succeeded very well. In the first round, he drove very nice and fast, staying close to the obstacles. A wider turn going into the last phase of the competition didn’t prevent him from qualifying for the second round. After he knocked the first cone down, two other balls fell in the second marathon obstacle, dropping him to third place: “I tried to go a bit faster in the second round. I really went for it. But the horses were more tired and they felt less even.”

József Dobrovitz jr. drove clear, but was just a few seconds too slow to qualify for the second round. He finished in fourth place, followed by Rainer Duen (GER), who had one knock down. Wild card driver Miklos Juhász finished in sixth place.

The FEI World Cup™ Driving competition in Geneva will be broadcast live on FEI TV, the FEI’s official video platform, on Sunday, 11 December at 13.00 hrs. CET (local time in Switzerland, GMT+1 hour).

For information on Geneva, go to www.chi-geneve.ch or contact Press Officer Corinne Druey, druey@syntagme-lausanne.ch, +41 21 312 82 22.

For more information on FEI World Cup™ Driving, please check the FEI website.

By Cindy Timmer

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

At Budapest:
Ezster Kovács
lovasvk@gmail.com
+36 70 366 6494

Boyd Exell Class of His Own

Boyd Exell (AUS) (FEI /Roland Thunholm)

Stockholm (SWE), 27 November 2016 – Boyd Exell (AUS) has proved once again to be in a class of his own in the FEI World Cup™ Driving competition in Stockholm. The six times FEI World Cup™ Champion went into the second round with over 19 seconds advantage to József Dobrovitz (HUN) and passed the finish line with an even larger advantage to his Hungarian fellow competitor. József Dobrovitz jr. (HUN) finished on a humble third place, only 1,5 seconds behind his father.

After his disappointing performance during the first competition on Friday evening, World Cup debutant Edouard Simonet (BEL) drove a very secure and safe round, only picking up a ball in the corner at the tricky 9th gate. Simonet finished in the fourth place, ahead of wild card driver Fredrik Persson (SWE). The home driver had to use his spare horse, which on Friday was not focussed at the right time. The horse insurance salesman hit one ball too many to qualify for the second round, which took place over a shortened course. Germany’s Rainer Duen picked up three balls and was placed sixth in his second World Cup competition of this season.

The enthusiastic spectators in the Friends arena cheered the six drivers in the technical course, laid out by Sweden’s level 3 Course Designer Dan Henriksson. Both rounds times were added together, but this didn’t affect Exell’s tactics. The Netherlands-based driver was the only one who drove a clear round and the one knock down in the second round did not endanger his leading position at all: “My horses were very excited when they came from the warm up arena into the main arena. I tried to slow them down, but they wouldn’t let me, so I just went very fast. In the second round again, their rhythm was excellent and I decided to go with the team. If I try to slow them down, I make mistakes. Compared to Stuttgart, I had my concentration back again because my father is back home after an operation.”

József Dobrovitz started his World Cup season in Stockholm, a show that he likes very much: “I was very pleased with my horses, but I made a mistake myself. I missed a gate in the first marathon obstacle, which cost me much time.” Dobrovitz then didn’t want to concentrate too much on gate 9 and knocked this one over, as well as a ball in the linear obstacle.

Dobrovitz’ son József Dobrovitz jr. also started his season in the Friends Arena, where he had to drive with an alternative set of leader horses after his experienced horse Cselentano was declared unfit to compete in the first horse inspection. The spare horse that he used had never experienced an indoor show before, but junior found the right pace and qualified for the second round. Unfortunately his reins went around his fingers in the second marathon obstacle and later on his whip got caught in the harness, which caused one ball to drop: “My horses were very good today; the leaders really started to get together. We compete in Budapest next week and I am not sure that I want to change again!”

Results in detail can be viewed here.

For information on Budapest, go to http://lovasshow.hu/ or contact Press Officer Ezster Kovács, lovasvk@gmail.com, +36 70 366 6494.

For more information on FEI World Cup™ Driving, please check the FEI website.

By Cindy Timmer

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

At Stockholm:
Lotta Amnestal
Lotta.Amnestal@ridsport.se
+ 46 709 79 56 35

US, Swedish and Dutch Cities Win Hosting Rights to Major FEI Events

(Photo: Liz Gregg/FEI)

Tokyo (JPN), 19 November 2016 – The Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping and FEI World Cup™ Dressage Finals for the years 2020 and 2021 and the FEI European Championships 2019 in Jumping, Dressage and Para-Equestrian Dressage were among the key events allocated by the FEI Bureau in Tokyo (JPN).

Following the success of the 2015 Finals, the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping and FEI World Cup™ Dressage Finals will return to Las Vegas (USA) in 2020 when the Finals will be hosted at a new venue, the MGM Grand Garden Arena from 15 to 19 April. Las Vegas has previously hosted six FEI World Cup™ Finals, two in Jumping and four combined Jumping and Dressage Finals at the Thomas & Mack Center (2000, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, and 2015).

The new venue, located in the MGM Grand Hotel on the famous Las Vegas Strip, is world renowned for hosting high-profile sporting events such as boxing and basketball, as well as live performances from global superstars like Celine Dion, Elton John and Britney Spears.

Gothenburg’s Scandinavium Arena, spiritual home of the FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final since playing host to the inaugural Final back in 1979, has been awarded the 2021 Finals. The Swedish sporting capital, which has already organised 22 FEI World Cup™ Finals including joint-Finals in 2013 and 2016, will host the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping and FEI World Cup™ Dressage Finals 2021 from 31 March to 5 April.

The 2021 double FEI World Cup™ Finals will kick-start celebrations of the City of Gothenburg’s 400th birthday celebrations.

Rotterdam (NED), another city with a long-standing tradition of hosting major equestrian championships, was announced as host for the triple FEI European Championships 2019 in Jumping, Dressage and Para-Equestrian Dressage from 19-25 August.

“We are delighted to confirm the allocation of some of our major Finals and Championships to major global cities like Las Vegas, Gothenburg and Rotterdam,” FEI Secretary General Sabrina Ibáñez said. “The organising committees for all these top events have such hands-on practical experience, and understand the process, commitment and dedication involved in organising these important fixtures on the FEI Calendar. We are very grateful to all the organisers who put in bids for these key events and are extremely happy to have the opportunity to showcase our sport in major global cities.”

The allocations were made at the FEI Bureau in-person meeting in Tokyo, prior to the FEI General Assembly (22 November). The Bureau also allocated the following FEI Championships and Finals:

2017

Jumping:
FEI South America Jumping Championships for Young Riders, Juniors, Pre-Juniors & Children, Buenos Aires (ARG) 2-8 October 2017
FEI World Jumping Challenge Final, Algiers (ALG) 26-29 April or 3-6 May (dates to be confirmed)
FEI Balkan Jumping Championships for Seniors, Young Riders, Juniors & Children, Zhitnica (BUL), 31 August – 3 September

Dressage:
FEI European Dressage Championships for Young Riders, Juniors. & Children, Roosendaal (NED), (dates to be confirmed)
FEI Balkan Dressage Championships for Seniors, Young Riders, Juniors & Children, Zagreb (CRO), 30 June – 2 July

Driving:
FEI World Driving Championship for Young Horses, Mezöhegyes (HUN), 7-10 September
FEI Balkan Driving Championship, Floresti (ROU), 29 September – 1 October
FEI World Para-Equestrian Driving Championship for Singles, Izsák (HUN), 28 September – 1 October

Endurance:
FEI Balkan Endurance Championship, Salcioara (ROU), 29-30 September

Reining:
FEI European Reining Championship, Givrins (SUI), 2-5 or 9-12 August (dates to be confirmed)

2018

Dressage:
FEI European Dressage Championship U25, Roosendaal (NED), 25-29 July

Driving:
FEI World Cup™ Driving Final, Bordeaux (FRA), 2-4 February
FEI World Driving Championship for Young Horses, Mezöhegyes (HUN), 13-16 September

Vaulting:
FEI World Cup™ Vaulting Final, Dortmund (GER), 1-4 March

2019

Multi-discipline:
FEI European Jumping, Dressage and Para-Equestrian Dressage Championships, Rotterdam (NED), 19-25 August

Driving:
FEI European Driving Championship, Donaueschingen (GER), 20-22 September

2020

Multi-discipline:
Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping and FEI World Cup™ Dressage Finals – Las Vegas (USA), 15-19 April

Driving:
FEI World Cup™ Driving Final, Bordeaux (FRA), 7-9 February

2021

Multi-discipline:
Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping and FEI World Cup™ Dressage Finals – Gothenburg (SWE), 31 March – 5 April

The FEI Bureau was also informed about the Secretary General’s decision to open a multi-year application process for the FEI WBFSH World Breeding Championships for Dressage and Eventing for 2019 and 2020 in order to align the bidding process with Jumping.

Details on the bidding process for FEI events can be found here.

For further information about the FEI Bureau, its role and composition, please click here.

FEI Media contacts:

Grania Willis
Director Press Relations
grania.willis@fei.org
+41 787 506 142

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
Email: ruth.grundy@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 145

Chardon Beats Exell in Stuttgart

Ijsbrand Chardon (FEI /Stefan Lafrentz)

Stuttgart (GER), 19 November 2016 – After an exciting battle in the nearly sold out Schleyer Halle in Stuttgart (GER), reigning World Cup Champion IJsbrand Chardon (NED) beat his rival Boyd Exell (AUS) in the first FEI World Cup™ Driving competition of the season. Wild card driver Georg von Stein (GER) finished in the third place.

Chardon set the time to beat in the second round, in which the top three drivers started from scratch. Last starter Boyd Exell knocked down two cones and was unable to beat Chardon’s time, which resulted in Chardon wining Stuttgart again, for the first time since 2007.

Boyd Exell used a new left leader horse in his team as well. The 18-year-old gelding Costa contributed to Boyd’s very fast team of horses. Being the last man in, Boyd was so focused in the first marathon obstacle, he completed with an extra circle. Whilst trying to make up for this mistake, the four-times World Champion went even faster, but knocked down two balls and finished in second place.

Georg von Stein thanked the organiser for his wild card, which allowed him to test his horses: “I made changes to my wheelers; I took one out and changed position of the other. The spectators were amazing; the atmosphere was great. It is a shame that I knocked some flowers over in the second round, but I am very pleased with my results.”

Theo Timmerman (NED) used two new leader horses and his team was very fast. Unfortunately he had three knockdowns, which dropped him to fourth place. The four-in-hand of Rainer Duen (GER) lacked the proper settings and Duen could not get into the right rhythm, finishing in fifth place, ahead of Jérôme Voutaz (SUI) whose round did not go as well as he had hoped for.

The 2016/2017 FEI World Cup™ Driving series now moves on to Stockholm (SWE) on Sunday, 27 November. Boyd Exell and Rainer Duen will drive their second competition in Sweden’s capital city. József Dobrovitz (HUN), József Dobrovitz jr. (HUN) and Edouard Simonet (BEL) will kick off their season there. Fredrik Persson (SWE) will compete with a wild card.

Quotes:

IJsbrand Chardon used a new horse in the left lead of his team, the 10-year-old piebald gelding Casper: “I have had this horse for two years and I normally use him in my riding school. I started to use him in a few small indoor competitions and he did very well, so I decided to use him in Stuttgart.”

Boyd Exell: “I wanted to stay tight to the elements and I forgot to think ahead; this was a driver mistake! I did cut every edge though and I am very pleased with my horses; they form a very good team.”

Results in detail can be viewed here.

The FEI World Cup™ Driving competition in Stockholm will be broadcast live on FEI TV, the FEI’s official video platform, at 13.00 hrs. CET (local time in Sweden, GMT+1 hour).

For information on Stockholm, go to www.swedenhorseshow.se/english/news/ or contact Press Officer Lotta Amnestal, Lotta.Amnestal@ridsport.se, + 46 709 79 56 35.

For more information on FEI World Cup™ Driving, please check the FEI website.

By Cindy Timmer

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

At Stuttgart:

Hartmut Binder
hartmut.binder@mps-agentur.de
+49 172 972 2848

Olympia Set for an Exhilarating Competition as Carriage Drivers Come Charging In

The world’s top Carriage Drivers will be storming back into the Olympia Grand Hall, on Thursday 15, Friday 16 and Saturday 17 December, with only one intention, to take home the top prize. The record holding six-time FEI World Cup™ Driving Championship winner, Boyd Exell (AUS), will be hoping to defend his 2015 title and extend his lead in the FEI World Cup™ Driving standings, but there are plenty of challengers in the line-up who will be vying to claim the coveted title.

Long-time rival Koos de Ronde (NED) will undoubtedly be one of them having competed in every show since 2011. De Ronde will be entertaining the crowds with his aggressive approach in the four-in-hand, battling it out with Exell and the rest of the field.

This colossal clash also welcomes back home-favourite, Daniel Naprous, lead member of the world-famous Devil’s Horsemen Stunt Team, who will be looking to record his first World Cup Leg victory. Ranked seventh in the world Jozsef Dobrovitz Snr (HUN) will be looking to go one better than his result in 2015, after narrowly missing out on 1st place. His son Jozsef Dobrovitz Jnr (HUN), ranked fifth in the world will be making his debut, adding extra spice as the family rivalry will commence with no holds barred.

Drivers George von Stein (GER) and Theo Timmerman (NED) ranked eighth and ninth in the world respectively, will be looking to make their mark on this nail biting contest, as the entire hall will be treated to an adrenalin fuelled competition. The matter of ultimate success will come down to the smallest of margins, as pace and power must be matched with definitive precision.

World no.1, Boyd Exell, commented; “Olympia always has an enthusiastic crowd and the atmosphere is electric.  There is a strong line-up this year, but I hope we can repeat our result from last year.” For more information, please visit the website at www.olympiahorseshow.com.

For more information, please contact:
Olympia, The London International Horse Show:
Gayle Telford, gayle@revolutionsports.co.uk 0203 176 0355

FEI World Cup Driving Enters Its 16th Season

IJsbrand Chardon (FEI /Eric Knoll)

Lausanne (SUI), 16 November 2016 – The very successful FEI World Cup™ Driving series will enter its 16th season starting in Stuttgart on 19 November. After the introduction of the FEI World Cup™ Driving for four-in-hands in 2001, the Series developed and became more and more popular amongst Carriage Driving fans, Competitors, Organisers and Media. The Series form a fantastic platform for the promotion of the carriage driving sport, in particular indoor driving.

After an exciting outdoor season with thirteen qualification competitions all over Europe, 10 top four-in-hand drivers will battle it out over eight Legs. As Chester Weber (USA, placed 4th), Michael Brauchle (GER, placed 6th) and Christoph Sandmann (GER, placed 10th) withdrew their participation, Jérôme Voutaz (SUI), Edouard Simonet (BEL) and Rainer Duen (GER) moved up in the standings and were delighted to be able to compete in the 2016/2017 Series.

Six times FEI World Cup™ Driving Champion and four times World Champion Boyd Exell won the Outdoor Qualification Ranking and will do his utmost to win the World Cup title back again. Reigning World Cup Champion and silver medallist at the FEI World Championships in Breda IJsbrand Chardon (NED) and bronze medallist Koos de Ronde (NED), both members of the undefeatable gold-medal winning Dutch team, are again part of the Series, as well as their team member Theo Timmerman.

Father and son József Dobrovitz and József Dobrovitz jr. were members of the silver team in Breda and will defend the Hungarian colours during the upcoming indoor season.  German Champion Georg von Stein (GER), member of the bronze team in Breda, qualified for the Series after winning the World Cup Qualification competitions in Lähden (GER) and Donaueschingen (GER).

Jérôme Voutaz got seriously injured at the last FEI World Cup™ Driving Qualification competition in Donaueschingen (GER) in September, but his recovery is going well and he has confirmed that he will kick off his second FEI World Cup™ Driving season in Stuttgart (GER).

Edouard Simonet (27) competed with a wild card at the CAI-W Mechelen (BEL) in 2015, where he finished on the fourth place. After several top ten places during the 2016 outdoor season, he got injured at the FEI World Championships in Breda (NED) early September as well. But like Voutaz, his recovery is also going well and Simonet, who learnt the tips and tricks of carriage driving as groom for Boyd Exell (AUS), will start his season in Stockholm (SWE).

Rainer Duen (GER) was the runner up in the German Championships and achieved several top 10 placings during the outdoor qualifiers. Duen will compete in the series for the fifth time in his career.

FEI World Cup™ Driving 2016-2017

The FEI World Cup™ Driving series is made up of eight Legs in Germany, Sweden, Hungary, Switzerland, Great Britain, Belgium and France. After one year of absence, Budapest Horse Show is part of the Series again, much to the delight of the drivers. The Driving world is extremely pleased to welcome Gothenburg Horse Show back as host to the FEI World Cup™ Driving Final from 24th to 26th February 2017.

Five drivers from the Top 10 will compete at each event and organisers may give wild cards. Every driver competes at four events. The scores from the best three events count. The top six drivers qualify for the Final, which will take place in Gothenburg (SWE) for the first time again since 2009.

Final Standings FEI World Cup™ Qualification
https://data.fei.org/Ranking/Search.aspx?rankingCode=A_WC_Q

FEI WORLD CUP™ DRIVING 2016-2017 Calendar
http://inside.fei.org/fei/events/world-cups/driving/current-season

Gothenburg (SWE) FINAL, 24-26 February 2017
Open to the top six athletes after CAI-W Bordeaux

The first qualifier of the FEI World Cup™ Driving 2016/2017 season takes place on Saturday, 19 November at the Stuttgart German Masters and will be broadcast live on FEI TV, the FEI’s official video platform, at 13.50 CET (local time in Germany, GMT+1 hour). For information on this event, go to the official website or contact Press Officer Jörg Klopfer, joerg.klopfer@in.stuttgart.de, +49 7 11 95 54 31 28.

For more information on FEI World Cup™ Driving, please check the FEI website.

By Cindy Timmer

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Introduction to Para-Driving with Scott Monroe, November 18 at Carlisle Academy

Are you a disabled veteran looking for an exciting adaptive sport?

Para-Dressage and Para-Driving are internationally-recognized, elite sports for individuals with permanent, measurable physical disabilities. Carlisle Academy, in partnership with the United States Equestrian Federation, was recently awarded an Adaptive Sports Grant from the Department of Veterans Affairs to support growth and participation of disabled veterans in para-equestrian sports. Full tuition support for veterans is available for this camp, as well as federal allowances to support ongoing training. Eligibility requirements apply.

Come learn more about these opportunities for disabled veterans and their coaches at Carlisle Academy.

Introduction to Para-Driving with Scott Monroe
Friday, November 18, 9am – 4pm
Carlisle Academy Integrative Equine Therapy & Sports in Lyman, Maine

For more info on the Para-Equestrian Training Camp, contact Carlisle Academy Head of School, Sarah Armentrout, at 207-985-0374, sarmentrout@carlisleacademymaine.com, or visit carlisleacademymaine.com.

For eligibility in Para-Equestrian Sports and the Paralympic Military Program, contact Laureen Johnson, Para-Equestrian Director of the United States Equestrian Federation, at lkjohnson@usef.org or (908) 326-1155.

Carlisle Academy is a recognized PATH Premier Accredited Center and a USEF/USPEA Para-Equestrian Center of Excellence.

For more information about the USPEA, please visit www.USPEA.org or contact USPEA President Hope Hand by e-mail: hope@uspea.org or by phone: (610)356-6481.