Category Archives: *Featured/Spotlights

Special features, spotlights, headlines

Lots of Gold for Germany and Great Britain while Sweden Tops Individual Jumping

The British Eventing team of Ellie Healy, Hattie Grace, Saffron Osborne, and Daisy Proctor. (FEI/Adam Fanthorpe)

Germany claimed all gold in Dressage while Great Britain dominated Eventing and took the Jumping team title. However, the Swedish flag also flew high on the final day of the FEI European Pony Championships 2018 at Bishop Burton College in Yorkshire (GBR) when Ingemar Hammarstrom stood top of the individual Jumping podium.

Dressage

The German Dressage whitewash began in the Team event in which Moritz Treffinger (Top Queen), Jana Lang (NK Cyril), Julia Barbian (Der Kleine Konig) and Lucie-Anouk Baumgurtel (Massimiliano FH) joined forces to post the winning score of 226.286. Denmark took silver on 219.028 and The Netherlands finished close behind in bronze on a final tally of 218.715.

Treffinger was outstanding all week, taking triple gold when also topping the Individual and Kur to Music competitions with his 10-year-old mare. And Denmark’s Alexander Yde Helgstrand was also highly impressive when claiming triple silver with his 12-year-old gelding Adriano B. Jana Lang claimed Individual bronze, but it was her German team-mate Barbian who stood on the third step of the podium in the Kur.

Treffinger looks to have real star potential, judges Jacques Van Daele, Yuri Romanov, Isobel Wessels, Elke Ebert, and Maja Stukelj all placing him first for a big total of 81.875% in the Kur which he performed to David Guetta music.

Eventing

It was a story-book finish when Britain’s Saffron Osborne claimed Eventing Team and Individual gold with the extraordinary 13-year-old Little Indian Feather – a lucky pony who was given a second chance and never looked back.

In very poor condition when rescued from a pound as a two-year-old by the Hennessy family from Waterford in Ireland, the mare survived a near-fatal injury and then produced a surprise foal before beginning her Eventing career and eventually moving on across the Irish Sea. She took Team and Individual silver for Osborne at last summer’s Championships in Hungary, and this year the pair went one better when claiming double-gold.

In fifth place on a score of 28 after Dressage, they added nothing on cross-country day to move into the individual lead, and the 16-year-old daughter of trainer and former National Hunt jockey Jamie Osborne found herself with a fence in hand coming to the closing stages of yesterday’s final showjumping phase.

“I didn’t say to myself that I could have a fence down. I didn’t want to jinx anything and rode it like there was nothing in hand. I know that my pony’s a careful jumper but until you’ve gone over the finishing line you can’t be certain!” — Saffron Osborne (GBR)

Ireland’s Sophie Foyle claimed silver with Little Miss Fernhill while Osborne’s team-mate, Daisy Proctor, took bronze with Holiday Chase. And the British side that also included Hattie Grace riding Noble Superman and Ellie Healy partnering Midnight Dancer were crowned Team champions ahead of Ireland in silver and France who finished just one penalty point further adrift in bronze.

Jumping

The battle for the Jumping Team title was a thriller, with the hosts claiming gold ahead of Sweden and a fierce fight between France and Ireland for the bronze. Clare Whitaker, wife of Olympic legend John Whitaker and mother of Louise and Robert, who also compete at the very top end of the sport, was British Chef d’Equipe. “It meant a lot to win on home soil,” she said.

As other nations started to struggle during the second round the GB girls kept their cool. Shaunie Greig with Casino Royale and Claudia Moore riding Elando van de Roshoeve knew they had the gold medal in the bag after third rider Perdi Digby posted a clear with Kayleighs Star to leave them on eight faults. They had a nine-fault advantage over Sweden in silver, but the French and Irish were tied on 20 faults so all four riders from each team had to jump off once more for the bronze. And it went right to the wire, with France shaving a few precious seconds off the time to clinch it.

Although the gold was won, fourth British team member Nicole Lockhead Anderson still rode her final round with Gangham Style – yet another clear – to keep her very much in the running for the individual medals, but it was Moore who came off best for the home side on the final day. The winner was undisputed as 15-year-old Ingemar Hammarstrom and his bay gelding Ocean des As were just too good for the rest when not touching a pole all week to take the title for Sweden.

With just four faults on the board, Ireland’s Max Wachman and Cuffesgrange Cavalidam earned the silver but it took a two-way showdown with the French partnership of Romane Orhant and Quabar des Monceaux before Moore claimed the bronze with the quickest time in a third-round jump-off.

Full results here.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

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

World Equine Expo to Feature Renowned Exhibitioners, Authors, Film and Art Festivals

Guy McLean ©Katy Driver.

TRYON, NC, USA – August 2, 2018 – The World Equine Expo™, hosted September 11-23, 2018 alongside the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG) at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), is set to host an array of diverse programming that includes renowned exhibitions, demonstrations, authors and speakers. The Equus Film Festival and an extensive Art Festival will accompany more than 200 vendors in a family-friendly, immersive and interactive experience for all World Equine Expo™ attendees. Access to the World Equine Expo™ and all programming is included with any WEG competition ticket, but Grounds Passes, which offer access to the general public facility grounds, can be purchased individually at www.Tryon2018.com.

Equestrian Exhibitions

This unprecedented celebration of human-equine interaction will allow WEG and World Equine Expo™ attendees to experience nationally and internationally renowned clinicians and performers such as Guy McLean, Double Dan Horsemanship, and Monty Roberts, among many others. From informative and interactive to jaw-dropping and innovative, the exhibitions, entertainment, and experiential components of the World Equine Expo™ are a key component of the programming curriculum, and these equestrian exhibitions will be highlighted in Ring 1 alongside the Vendor Village at the heart of TIEC property.

Guy McLean, an Australian horseman and entertainer is known around the globe for his liberty performance teams, which feature Australian Stock Horses and will provide inspiring and educational exhibitions appealing to the young and old alike.

Monty Roberts, known worldwide for his “Join-Up” technique will be present two exclusive exhibitions, including working with an “unworkable” horse and collaborating with a U.S. veteran and an unschooled horse to teach each how to listen, respond, and ultimately heal each other. Roberts has trained horses for celebrities and world-changers including Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the legendary Spanish Riding School and will bring his expertise to the Expo on September 19-20.

The World Equine Expo™ will also feature the World Breeding Federation of Sport Horses (WBFSH) Developing Jumpers Exhibition, presented by Spy Coast Farm, focusing on the evaluation of developing jumpers to educate the public on the criteria for judging young jumpers, including the height of fences and technical abilities five and six-year-old horses are required to demonstrate. This demonstration will serve to draw attention to Young Horse Championships, such as the World Breeding Jumping Championships. While the format will be similar in principle, it will vary from the annual competition in Lanaken, Belgium. Twenty-two horses will compete in jumping exhibitions from on September 20th and 21st at the World Equine Expo™.

Michael Gascon of Gascon Horsemanship has finessed his expertise with gaited horses, as well as his demonstrations and clinics on topics including Paso Soccer, 30 Minute Wild Horse Starting, Horsemanship 101, Obstacles, Solving Problem horses, and much more. Gascon will be joining the World Equine Expo™ with his incredible equine Paso Fino partners.

Showcasing unique classical Dressage skills and bridle-less riding expertise, J. P. Giacomini will be perform over 24 separate demonstrations throughout the course of two weeks at the World Equine Expo™ with his four talented Andalusian and Lusitano homebred stallions. Giacomini will be covering topics from classical Dressage at the Grand Prix level to lunging for balance, contact and bridle-less riding, preparing for a classical piaffe, work in-hand for biomechanics development, Endotapping™ and much more.

Kim Van Kampen, a founding partner of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) and a longstanding partner of the Wellington Equestrian Partners (WEP), will bring eight horses to perform quadrilles on the September 13 and 14, at midday throughout Dressage competition days during Week One of the WEG. A quadrille is a riding team comprised of four dressage riders who will compete together to music. Quadrilles are easily compared to a drill team and originated from the Spanish Riding School.

Mustang Leadership Partners, LLC will be present on-site during the World Equine Expo™ as title sponsor of the Equus Film Festival and will provide a unique demonstration programming schedule. Mustang Leadership Partners, LLC provides girls and young women with an opportunity to develop, practice, and improve relationship skills, responsibility, social accountability, self-awareness and self-confidence through interactions with Mustangs.

Equus Film Festival & Art Festival

The Equus Film Festival, presented by Mustang Leadership Partners, LLC, will showcase eight discipline-dedicated films and host meet-and-greets with directors and producers to an extensive celebration of equestrian art. The Equus Film Festival will air films from 12:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. every hour with special screenings of popular films airing each evening between 6:30 p.m.-8:00 p.m. The Art Festival will also feature galleries of local and international artists exploring all facets of horse and human interaction.

The Coca-Cola® Stage

At the Coca-Cola® Stage, a key focal point of the World Equine Expo™, attendees can experience readings and signings with New York Times Best Selling authors, learn from innovators making waves across the equestrian industry, and be entertained by brilliant performances and musical acts. The Coca-Cola® Stage programming will run at 10:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m., and 4:00 p.m. daily.

Mary Alice Monroe’s award-winning novels have been named to many prestigious lists, including the New York Times, USA Today and SIBA. She has received numerous awards, including several Readers’ Choice Awards; the 2014 SC Book Festival Award for Excellence in Writing; the 2015 SW Florida Book Festival Distinguished Author Award; and the RT Lifetime Achievement Award. Most recently, Monroe was named by the South Carolina Academy of Authors as a member of the Literary Hall of Fame. Monroe will speak about the inspiration for her upcoming novel, The Summer Guests, set in the Tryon and Wellington equestrian communities, and the power of story to connect people and the animal world. Guests will receive a gift of the first three chapters of The Summer Guests. A portion of the proceeds from pre-orders during WEG will benefit Brooke USA, sister organization to Brooke, the Official Charity of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018.

George H. Morris, former Chef d’Equipe of the U.S. Show Jumping Team, renowned rider, coach, clinician, and author, will present an inside look at the international equestrian industry from the 1950s to present day, including a special emphasis on the rich equestrian legacy of the Tryon region. Join Morris throughout both weeks of the World Equine Expo™ as he shares stories about significant equestrian events, answers questions about riding, competition and horsemanship then and now.

Week one attendees will have the chance to learn from United States Dressage Federation Bronze, Silver, and Gold Medalist Jessica Jo (J. J.) Tate, as she presents “What the Heck is Horse Ballet” and explains the ins-and-outs of the intricate and beautiful discipline of Dressage. Tate has competed at the top level of the sport around the world, and her presentation will be both entertaining and educational, whether attendees are completely new to Dressage or a seasoned competitor.

Veterinarian and zoologist Dr. David Jones is an adventurer and world traveler with a passion for wildlife and equines who will present “Tales of Tails and Toenails from This Year’s ‘Equine Industry Vision Award-Winner.'” The former director of the North Carolina Zoological Park and CEO of the Zoological Society of London, Jones has spent his 45-year career in the wildlife and zoo management fields, chasing his passion across 50 countries. He is also the chairman of the world’s largest international equine welfare charity, Brooke, the official charity of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018. David currently chairs Brooke USA and is the founder and chairman of “Wild Welfare,” which seeks to improve animal welfare in zoos needing assistance in their husbandry and management. His stories from around the world can be heard from September 19-21.

CEO of Journeys Equestrian Travels Debbie Dos Santos will recount her equine experiences across the globe through her boutique, luxury travel design company that provides experiential travel, private yacht charters and villas for individuals, groups, corporate and business loyalty programs. Debbie’s Equestrian Travels are designed for the all things equestrian such as bespoke itineraries, world equestrian events and preferred properties. Attendees can catch Debbie Dos Santos between September 19-21.

Petra Ingram, CEO of Brooke, the world’s largest international equine welfare charity, will speak on the connection and love between horse and riders and educate about Brooke’s efforts to lift both horses and humans out of poverty in developing nations around the world.

British Olympic Gold Medalist in Eventing and Lady-In-Waiting to HRH The Princess Royal Jane Holderness-Roddam will discuss her amazing career in Eventing, including competing at the age of six at Madison Square Garden and share her stories of the abiding relationship between the Royals and horses, from the rural paddocks of England to the grounds of Buckingham Palace.

Leslie Munsell, Founder of Beauty for Real, has been described as a makeup maverick, innovator, trend forecaster, educator and entrepreneur. With 25 years’ experience as a celebrity makeup artist, Leslie has worked with the biggest talents in the advertising and fashion worlds. Now, in her crowning role as the creator of Beauty for Real cosmetics, Munsell will demonstrate the use of her cruelty-free cosmetics. As a lifelong Dressage rider, Munsell will also explain why her cosmetics are perfectly formulated for equestrians and how proceeds improve the welfare of horses, donkeys, and mules around the world through Brooke USA. Munsell will be on-site for both weeks of the World Equine Expo™.

To learn more about the World Equine Expo™ and preview schedules, click here.

Irish Pip British in Brilliant Battle at Hickstead

Photo: Anthony Condon and SFS Aristio. (FEI/Liz Gregg)

Ireland won out in a two-way jump-off against old rivals Great Britain in the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at Hickstead. Wild winds and the first heavy rain to hit the region for more than 50 days ensured conditions were seriously challenging in this penultimate qualifier of the Europe Division 1 series. But Rodrigo Pessoa’s side of Trevor Breen (39), Richie Moloney (36), Michael Duffy (23) and Anthony Condon (31) battled through, and Condon clinched it in a third-round showdown against Holly Smith.

It was no day for the faint-hearted as the formidable Hickstead fences took their toll. The tall white gate at fence three was a real bogey, as was the 4-metre-wide open water which sealed the fate of the 2017 series champions from The Netherlands who retired in the closing stages. Only two weeks ago Johnny Pals and Chat Botte du Ruisseau Z were the Dutch heroes when pinning the Irish into runner-up spot at Falsterbo (SWE) in a four-way jump-off against the clock. But the lovely 10-year-old stallion found the Hickstead water very scary in both rounds, and, down to a three-man side following the withdrawal of Willem Greve’s Zypria S, the pair’s second-round tally of 23 faults was so expensive that Chef d’Equipe, Rob Ehrens, decided his team should call it a day.

But the British were also reduced to just three counting scores when former world no. 1 and 2012 Olympic gold medallist Scott Brash was eliminated at the open water both times out with Hello Shelby. Team manager Di Lampard has tremendous talent at her disposal, however, and Smith (Heart’s Destiny), Amanda Derbyshire (Luibanta BH) and William Whitaker (Utamaro D’Ecaussines) showed true grit to force the jump-off against the boys in green.

Smith set the target with a lovely clear round from her big, quality, nine-year-old bay who broke the beam in 43.39 seconds. Condon, who has been based in England for the last 14 years, knew what he had to do when it came to his turn.

“Holly is a very fast rider and her horse has a huge stride so she can be deceptive – I just thought that if I could do the same and be a little quicker, then I could catch her.” — Anthony Condon (IRL)

Steering his 12-year-old stallion SFS Aristio, which is owned by John and Pat Hales and their daughter Lisa, whose names will always be intrinsically linked with the super-stallion Arko and rider Nick Skelton, he broke the beam more than two seconds sooner. As he raced through the finish his fellow-countrymen Duffy (EFS Top Contender), Breen (Bombay) and Moloney (Freestyle de Muze), and the entire Irish contingent, exploded with delight.

Ireland has now rocketed up to third on the Europe Division 1 leaderboard and, with 335 points, the reigning European champions look well-qualified for the Longines 2018 Final in Barcelona (ESP) in October. Brazil finished third, Sweden fourth and the Belgians, long-time Europe Division 1 leaders, had to settle for fifth ahead of Italy who lined up sixth of the seven competing nations.

And the Irish have another big day to look forward to when the Europe Division 1 series concludes on home ground in Dublin (IRL) in 12 days’ time where Britain and Italy will be desperate to move out of the danger-zone at the bottom of the league table, as only seven of the 10 competing nations will make the cut to the Barcelona Final.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

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

Bridget’s Girls vs Frankie’s Boys in ‘Battle of the Sexes’ Markel Champions Challenge at Olympia

‘Race Night’ at Olympia, The London International Horse Show, is set to wow crowds on Friday 21 December, with an evening of competitive racing action including the Markel Champions Challenge, in aid of the Injured Jockeys Fund.

Star jockey, Frankie Dettori, will captain a team of leading male jockeys who will be looking for victory in an unmissable battle of the sexes. Pitched against Dettori’s team will be the racing world’s ‘Girl Power’ – a team of leading female jockeys captained by Bridget Andrews.

The Markel Champions Challenge will see the jockeys switch disciplines for one night only, as they compete in a relay Show Jumping competition. This is the fourth year of the Markel Champions Challenge at Olympia and it has quickly become a highlight of the week.

With a long list of achievements under their belts, both captains have the credentials to lead their teams and take the Markel Champions Challenge title. Dettori recently took centre stage at Royal Ascot, riding three winners to victory on the opening day, adding to his extensive list of over 3,000 winners. Bridget Andrews took her biggest win to date at the Cheltenham Festival in March, aboard Mohaayed in the County Hurdle, cementing her position amongst the best female jockeys in the country.

Bridget Andrews says: ‘I am delighted to be captaining the girls. I’m sure we’ll give Frankie and the boys a real run for their money, and hopefully, come home winners! More importantly, it’s all for a great cause, raising money for the Injured Jockeys Fund.’

The final line-up will be announced in due course as Andrews and Dettori select their teams. Expect to see some of the biggest names in racing as competition gets fierce for the 2018 showdown.

Juliet Redfern, Managing Director of Markel’s Equine and Livestock division, says: ‘Markel is delighted to be continuing our support of this fabulous event which gets more competitive every year between the teams. Having a “Girls vs Boys” theme this year puts a new twist on things and of course I’ll be rooting for the girls. Combining such a popular event in support of such an amazing charity in the Injured Jockey’s Fund – it doesn’t get any better.’

Lisa Hancock, CEO of the Injured Jockeys Fund, says: ‘Olympia is becoming one of the highlights of the jockeys’ year and they have so much fun. We can’t thank Markel enough for their continued support of us and the work we do and are looking forward so much to being back at Olympia again.”

‘Race Night’ at Olympia, the UK’s largest indoor Show, will involve an evening of race-themed entertainment. With a full line-up still to be announced, spectators can expect appearances from the legendary Bob Champion. The Bob Champion Cancer Trust is supported by the Osborne Refrigerators Shetland Pony Grand National, in which crowds can cheer on the mini jockeys and their fierce Shetlands over a mini Grand National course.

To find out more about Olympia, the London International Horse Show, visit www.olympiahorseshow.com.

For more information, please contact:
Gayle Telford gayle@revolutionsports.co.uk +44(0)7717 776928

Zenanta and Amy Speck-Kern Victorious in I1 Freestyle Debut

Amy Speck-Kern and Zenanta in their I1 Freestyle (Photo courtesy of Jonna Jodko)

Wellington, FL (July 14, 2018) – A sweltering Florida summer couldn’t stop Excel Dressage’s Amy Speck-Kern and her KWPN mare Zenanta from attaining another milestone in their dressage career. During June’s Gold Coast Summer Solstice, held at the Palm Beach Equine Sports Complex in Wellington, Florida, Speck-Kern and the elegant bay mare topped their debut FEI Freestyle class with a 72.230%. Zenanta (Krack C x Ferro) made her Intermediaire I debut only in beginning of 2018, and her debut Intermediaire I freestyle victory demonstrates the alacrity with which she is successfully progressing up the levels. The pair danced to a selection of violin covers of pop music from Avicii, Kygo, Lindsay Sterling, Justin Bieber, and Selena Gomez, all choreographed to the movements of the Intermediaire I. Winning their first freestyle is a meaningful step as the mare continues to make progress towards the Grand Prix, and Speck-Kern also has her sights set on possibly taking Zenanta to regionals to do the Prix St. Georges, Intermediaire I, and Intermediaire I Freestyle.

The pair’s freestyle was designed by Karen Robinson of Applause Dressage. Beginning with a tribute to the late Avicii in the opening canter song, Gonna Love Ya, the test progressed to a Martin Z cover of Feel It Still by Portugal. The Man for Zenanta’s trot, a Lindsay Sterling cover of It Ain’t Me by Selena Gomez and Kygo for her canter, and Love Yourself by Justin Bieber for her walk. “I chose music that was easy to ride to and upbeat to match her elevated gaits,” said Speck-Kern, who trains out of her Loxahatchee facility with Olympian Ali Brock. “We decided to do the Freestyle as a step towards the winter CDIs next season; I’ve never done a CDI and wanted to practice with her in the summer when there was less pressure. She’s really been stepping up in her training, and our lessons with Ali [Brock] have been going really well. We are preparing her for the Grand Prix, but are very much taking our time and letting Zenanta determine when we are ready. There’s no rush, and the emphasis will be on quality. For now my plans are to show our I1 freestyle one more time this summer, then maybe go to regionals with an eye on nationals before seeing where our training is for the beginning of the 2019 season.”

Speck-Kern closed out her 2018 winter season with successful rides on her two campaign horses, Zenanta and Amadeus (Flemmingh x Welt Hit II). A and Z, as they are known around the barn, put in solid tests at the national level during the 2018 Adequan Global Dressage Festival. Zenanta began by making her Intermediaire I debut just before the start of season and closing AGDF Week 12 with a personal high score at the level; she and Speck-Kern also won the Intermediaire I during the Palm Beach Dressage Derby with a score of 66%. Amadeus, a gelding Speck-Kern scouted and imported from Europe as a 3-year-old, is making currently competing at Intermediaire and making steady progress towards the Grand Prix.

Media contact:
Holly Johnson
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
www.equinium.com
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

The FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon 2018 Countdown Is Underway

There’s no event quite like it! The FEI World Equestrian Games™ is the pinnacle of equestrian sport and it is two months to go to the opening ceremony for Tryon 2018.

With an anticipated 1,000 athletes, 1,500 horses, and 500,000 spectators from more than 70 countries scheduled to attend, this edition will be one of the biggest sporting events on US soil this year and will attract an expected on-site audience of over 500,000.

The eighth edition of the Games is generating huge excitement at the prospect of the world’s best partnerships from across all the FEI disciplines uniting for a showcase of horse sport at the spectacular Tryon International Equestrian Center venue. With so many incredible stories to tell, both from past Games and a preview of those special moments to come, the two-month countdown marks the perfect occasion to launch the FEI campaign for the Games … #BeOne.

Equestrian fans, athletes, and teams from across the globe will come together to celebrate the sport – as one. We will #BeOne and stand proud as a global community united by sport and horsemanship as we honour the unrivalled bond between horse and human.

We ask equestrian fans to come together and show their love of the sport at one of the biggest events in the world. It’s the chance to celebrate everything that makes equestrianism one of the most loved sports worldwide.

It’s time to be passionate.

Be epic. Be free. Be united. Be fearless. Be spectacular. Be victorious. Be one.

“We are very pleased to launch our BeOne campaign today as the excitement really kicks off in the countdown to the FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon this September,” said FEI Secretary General Sabrina Ibáñez. “When you look at equestrian sport, which is intense and emotive, our sport thrives on passion, not only from our athletes but our fans, this campaign will clearly showcase the diversity of our disciplines and will demonstrate that it really all comes down to one partnership & one sporting effort. A true celebration of the sport and as for the Games, there’s really is no event quite like it!”

To learn more about the #BeOne campaign, click here.

For more information on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, go to: www.Tryon2018.com and www.fei.org/events/fei-world-equestrian-games-tryon.

Media contact:

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

CHIO Aachen Hosts the Second Major of the Year

11 July 2018, Aachen, Germany – From 13 to 22 July the world’s top international riders will travel to West Germany to showcase their talents to over 360,000 spectators as they compete in the second Major of the year, the Rolex Grand Prix, at the spectacular CHIO Aachen.

The heart of equestrian sport beats at this magnificent venue, showcasing show jumping, eventing, dressage, driving and vaulting. This breathtaking nine-day event is known as the best equine sporting competition in the world and a highlight of the annual equestrian calendar.

The focal point of the competition, the Rolex Grand Prix, will take place on Sunday 22 July. As part of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, CHIO Aachen hosts the second Major of 2018 in the main jumping arena, a stunning setting that accommodates over 40,000 passionate supporters. Widely acknowledged as one of the most demanding show jumping courses in the world, the Rolex Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen epitomizes show jumping, and is the show against which all others are measured.

The most recent addition to the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, The Dutch Masters, held in March, saw Belgium’s Niels Bruynseels triumph. Revelling in his success, Bruynseels will be hoping to maintain his position as the live contender for the premier contest. “Aachen is the next stop in my journey, and of course one of my number one goals right now is to go there and win,” Bruynseels affirmed.

THE ROLEX GRAND SLAM OF SHOW JUMPING

The first Major of the year took place in ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands, where 11,500 fans gathered to witness this new addition to the Rolex Grand Slam prize. Bright lights illuminated the beautiful indoor arena, for the highlight of the event, the Rolex Grand Prix. Now all eyes will turn to CHIO Aachen for a contrasting competition, held in one of the greatest outdoor arenas, on grass.

A monumental challenge for the horse and rider combinations, the Majors require perfect performances in order to reach the final stage. World-renowned course designer, Frank Rothenberger, creates the imposing, technical course seen each year in the Rolex Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen. His course will demand faultless precision, courage, and determination from all competitors as they contend for the highly sought-after victory.

The greatest riders from all over the world will be heading to CHIO Aachen with the goal of being crowned champion. With one Major success already this year, spectators will keep a close watch on Bruynseels to see if he can continue his winning streak.

ROLEX TESTIMONEES AT CHIO AACHEN

World number eight Steve Guerdat is aiming for victory at CHIO Aachen. Having recently triumphed at CHI Royal Windsor Horse Show in the Rolex Grand Prix, the Swiss hero is at the top of his game and will be a formidable contender.

The first and only rider to ever win the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, Britain’s Scott Brash, and 2016 Olympic Team gold medallist Kevin Staut (FRA), are also set to compete at CHIO Aachen. Joining them will be the masterful Canadian Eric Lamaze and Swiss rider Martin Fuchs, Rolex’s newest equestrian Testimonee.

The passionate and knowledgeable home crowd will be eager to welcome their national heroes, Rolex Testimonees and champion riders Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and Isabell Werth. Winner of the 2005 Rolex Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen, Michaels-Beerbaum, an inspiring and courageous show jumper, will no doubt have the full support of the grandstand driving her to repeat this victory once again. The incomparable Isabell Werth is one of the most decorated dressage riders. Her World Dressage Champion title and six Olympic gold medals are just two of her many illustrious achievements. This year, spectators will have the pleasure of seeing Werth compete in the 5* Dressage Grand Prix, as she aims to win her twelfth Aachen Grand Prix title.

SHARED VALUES IN EQUESTRIAN SPORT

CHIO Aachen was inaugurated in 1924 and has exhibited phenomenal equestrian sport ever since. The year 2018 marks 10 years since the show extended to nine days of thrilling competitions, highlighting its distinguished history and commitment to the sport.

The enduring relationship between Rolex and CHIO Aachen was formed in 1999 and has gone from strength-to-strength throughout the years. Show Director, Frank Kemperman, said: “We are extremely proud of the partnership between Rolex and CHIO Aachen. We feel privileged to be associated with such a prestigious and iconic brand, which has stood behind equestrian sport for over 60 years and provided fundamental support to foster its development and long-term success.”

MEDIA CONTACTS:

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

Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Merrick Haydon
merrick@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 (0)7748 186 833

Parot Jumps to Success during Conclusion of Tryon Spring V CSI 3*

Samuel Parot and Quick du Pottier. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – June 3, 2018 – Chile’s Samuel Parot concluded competition at Tryon Spring V on a high note, guiding his own 2004 Selle Francais gelding Quick du Pottier (Hurlevent de Breka x Silnette de Menell) to a first place victory on the Derby Field at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) in the $35,000 1.45m Sunday Classic CSI 3*.

Parot piloted his mount across the fast track in 39.44 seconds, besting more than 25 combinations and riding more than two seconds ahead of second place pair Aaron Vale (USA) and Cassevel, a 2007 Holsteiner gelding (Cassini II x Quidam de Revel) owned by Hays Investment Corp., who claimed the red rosette after a jump-off time of 41.57 seconds. Third place honors were awarded to Manuel Torres (COL) aboard Santa Catalina Farm’s Alejandro, a 2009 Rheinlander gelding (Acorado’s Ass x Continue), who rode through timers in 41.7 seconds.

Parot and the gelding have been competing at the FEI level together since 2016 and have notched several top finishes at the venue. Of his turnout for the day’s class, Parot explained, “This horse has a lot of experience out on the grass. I’ve taken him out on it a lot in Europe at shows over there. It’s easy for him to come out here. This footing is fantastic.”

The duo competed throughout the course of the week, placing fifth in the $35,000 1.50m Welcome Stake CSI 3*, after riding to the fastest jump-off time of 33.505 seconds, but adding four faults to their score.

“He jumped out here the first day and we had a fast jump-off, but knocked a rail,” exclaimed Parot. “Yesterday he competed in the Grand Prix, but had two down very quickly, so I retired him to save him for today. That was the right choice and today he was fantastic.”

Parot plans to continue on with competition next week during the CSI 4*, and will stay at the venue until the end of July. He concluded, “For the summer I will stay here and then I will figure it out from there!”

Please visit www.tryon.com or call (828)-863-1000 for more information.

McLain Ward Makes Devon History with Tenth Career $250k Sapphire Grand Prix Win

Photo: McLain Ward and Clinta.

Devon, Pa. – May 31, 2018 – Thursday night at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair once again belonged to the “King of Devon” McLain Ward of Brewster, New York, who surpassed 31 contenders to claim the $250,000 Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon CSI4* for a record tenth time in his career. Ward rode the 11-year-old Oldenburg mare, Clinta, owned by Sagamore Farms, around the famed Dixon Oval in front of a packed crowd, consisting of diehard show jumping fans to Pennsylvania locals, hoping to witness some of the greatest names in the sport of show jumping go head-to-head for the most coveted trophy in the Devon collection: the Celeste McNeal Harper Perpetual Trophy.

Hunt Tosh and Flamingo K Claim $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

Thursday afternoon at the Devon Horse Show brought top hunter horses and riders together to showcase their best efforts in the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, sponsored by the Wheeler family. At the end of the afternoon, it was Hunt Tosh of Alpharetta, Georgia and Ceil Wheeler’s Flamingo K who bested the playing field of 30 other entries.

Amanda Murchison and CH Spread The Word Earn Three-Peat Devon Blue in Adult Three-Gaited English Show Pleasure

The Dixon Oval saw “Devon at Sunset” take place on Thursday, where highlighted events included the Adult Three-Gaited English Show Pleasure class with eight horse-and-rider combinations. For the third year in a row, it was Amanda Murchison and her own CH Spread The Word who took home the Robin Hill Challenge Trophy in the competitive class.

For more information, please visit www.DevonHorseShow.net.

Media Contact: Rebecca Walton
Phelps Media Group, Inc. International
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386
info@phelpsmediagroup.com

3 of the Best: Three of Aiden O’Brien’s Key Runners ahead of Royal Ascot

Photo: Sergei Prokofiev clears away to win easily for the O’Brien team. Source: https://www.theirishfield.ie/naas-sunday-sergei-prokofiev-is-a-confident-choice-372911/.

The O’Brien team is no doubt set to dominate across Royal Ascot with their incredible strength in depth. Some who are some of the key contenders to note for the Champion trainer?

Coventry Stakes
Sergei Prokofiev

The son of Scat daddy looks to be at the head of the pecking order of 2 year olds for the Ballydoyle team. He was sent off at odds of 4/9 in a maiden at Dundalk and shaped with a fair bit of promise only to lose a short head to Skitter Scatter. Skitter had already had a run under his belt and clearly showed the experience on the day.

Sergei was then pitched in again just 12 days later at Navan and was supported as if defeat was out of the question. Ridden by Ryan Moore he sat behind the leaders always travelling the best before taking it up with just over a furlong to go. He cleared away to win by 7 and a half lengths with ease. This was a performance stamped with class and one that shows why the horse is held in such high regard by connections.

Sergei again returned over the weekend for his final prep race in a tough looking listed contest but was sent off at odds of at prohibitive odds of 2/7. He again looked a complete class above and a clear Group 1 performer in winning by 4 lengths. All roads are now likely to lead to the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot in just a few weeks’ time. He is currently priced at odds of 4/1 for the race and if showing similar improvement again it is going to take a seriously top horse to stop him from following in the footsteps of previous stable stars in 2013 and 2016 winners War Command and Caravaggio.

St James Palace Stakes
Gustav Klimt

Yet another classy horse to have been sired by the great Galileo. He entered his current 3 year old campaign following two successes in his three starts as a 2 year old. His only defeat coming on debut which comes as no surprise as being trained by O’Brien. The final of those victories was at Newmarket in a Group 2 where he found a significant amount of trouble only to fly late on to get up and land the odds. This performance firmly stamped him down as a horse with a significant amount of ability and one to follow.

Gustav returned with a victory in the 2000 guineas trial at Leopardstown where he got up to beat the promising Imaging cosily on unsuitable ground. Following this he was made a short favourite for the guineas at Newmarket. However, on the build up to the day he drifted heavily with his stablemate Saxon Warrior continued to be gambled on. The market got this correct with Saxon Warrior as he was a very impressive winner of the race. Gustav is clearly still a horse with a lot of ability so is still one to follow. His next start is likely to be in the St James Palace Stakes in which he is currently priced at odds of 4/1.

Gold Cup
Order of St George

The final horse to make the select list is the classy stayer Order of St George. The 6 year old is another star from the stable who is not far off surpassing the £2 million prize money mark. He has returned with a solid victory showing the horse is in fine fettle ahead of another testing campaign. He has always looked all about stamina and is renowned for finishing best, which is why this race is tailor made for the horse. To further back up his claims, he has placed in the last two runnings of the Arc over an inadequate trip – again, not only showing the class, but the will to win in the horse.

Order was a very impressive winner of the Gold Cup back in 2016 where he made up an incredible amount of ground in the latter stages of the race. He came back to contest the race again last year and was a very unlucky fast finishing second from an enterprisingly ridden Big Orange. There is no doubt the horse is one to follow and if bringing his A game again it will certainly take a class performance from one of the younger brigade to topple the experienced campaigner. You can place a bet on Royal Ascot and he is currently 9/4 to go on and land his second Ascot Gold Cup.