Tag Archives: Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping

Preview Film: The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping

08 September 2015 – The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping is the ultimate prize in equestrian sport. In five days’ time, at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, one horseman, Rolex Testimonee Scott Brash, has the chance to make history and become the first rider to claim the prestigious award.

Please find below a short copyright free preview film, presented by Rolex.

YouTube link

Media Contacts:
Rolex SA
Virginie Chevailler
virginie.chevailler@rolex.com
+41 22 302 2761

Rod Kohler
Revolution Sports + Entertainment
E: rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
T: +44(0)207 592 1207

Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping in Contention as World’s Finest Riders Head to Spruce Meadows

1 September 2015, Spruce Meadows, Canada – The 2015 edition of Spruce Meadows marks the 40th edition of this exceptional event. The peak of this anniversary tournament will be the CP International, presented by Rolex, where one rider has the chance to take home the ultimate Show Jumping prize: The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

British competitor Scott Brash could make history and become the first to succeed in this unique challenge. Brash has already made history by becoming the first rider to win two consecutive legs of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

His quest started at the greatest indoor show in the world, CHI Geneva, last December, when he triumphed in the Rolex Grand Prix. A few months later, he soared to stunning victory at the Rolex Grand Prix of Aachen in Germany – possibly the most prized in the world. Winning it – in the electric atmosphere of the huge grass arena – is akin to winning a gold medal at a championship.

He instantly declared his intention to compete for the final stage of the Rolex Grand Slam at Spruce Meadows, saying: “To win one leg is already hard enough; to win two is extremely difficult; to win three is going to be really hard. But the Rolex Grand Slam is the ultimate challenge, so I will definitely try and win it.”

Scott Brash’s partner in both Geneva and Aachen was Hello Sanctos, the 13-year-old Belgian-bred gelding owned by Lord and Lady Harris and Lady Kirkham, with which he has won many major grand prix around the world. Brash is taking no chances with Hello Sanctos and is resting him in order to target this exceptional opportunity at sporting glory in Spruce Meadows.

THE ROLEX GRAND SLAM OF SHOW JUMPING

The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping represents the pinnacle of equestrian sporting achievement. Launched in 2013, it is the only global initiative to reward the outstanding rider who wins the three Majors consecutively – CHIO Aachen in Germany, Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ in Canada and CHI Geneva in Switzerland. Only a great horseman or horsewoman could win this most prestigious challenge of show jumping.

A VENUE LIKE NO OTHER

Spruce Meadows is one of the world’s greatest equestrian venues, founded by the Southern family, who understood just what it takes to reach the pinnacle of such a demanding and thrilling sport. At the foot of the Rocky Mountains in Canada, Spruce Meadows has a spectacular setting, as well as the perfect facilities for athletes to perform to the best of their abilities.

Spruce Meadows is the most popular venue for equine sport in North America. The highlight of its season is the ‘Masters’ Tournament, which runs from 9-13 September 2015.

The Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament has been named the number one event in Show Jumping four times, and Rolex is proud to have been associated with it since 1989.

Rolex Testimonee Eric Lamaze, who won The International, presented by Rolex, at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ in 2007 and 2011, said, “For me, Spruce Meadows is one of the most exciting venues in the world. As you proceed through the course the noise gets louder and louder; as a rider I’ve never heard anything like it and the horses feel it, too.

“It’s the Super Bowl of Show Jumping and gives you chills when you come into the ring. You want to put in that clear round to hear the crowd come to life.”

The finest riders and horses from round the globe will be vying for victory and leading the way will be Rolex’s Equestrian Testimonees.

ROLEX TESTIMONEES

At its heart, top-class sport is all about performance. To be the very best, an athlete must be able to repeatedly deliver under pressure. As the world’s leading makers of timepieces, this is something Rolex understands perfectly.

But some of the fascination in equestrian sport comes from the fact that, however talented and consistent the human athlete may be, he or she must possess an exceptional range of complementary abilities in order to form a winning partnership with the equine athlete.

They must be patient, sportsmanlike and sympathetic – but also courageous, resilient and quick-thinking. It is these qualities that turn a rider into a horseman, qualities found at the heart of every Rolex Testimonee.

Eric Lamaze is a Canadian sporting hero. He won individual gold at the 2008 Olympics, and his many Spruce Meadows victories include two at The International Grand Prix, presented by Rolex (the predecessor to the now CP International). He is respected worldwide for his outstanding horsemanship and will be one of Scott Brash’s toughest opponents.

Kent Farrington is the United States’ highest-rated show jumper. His 2015 form has been superb, and includes a win in the RBC Grand Prix, presented by Rolex, another at Spruce Meadows in June and again in the Pan American Cup, presented by Rolex, in July. He has yet to win the grand prix at the ‘Masters’ Tournament, and is determined to make it happen.

The Europe-based riders will have further to travel but are still in contention for the prestigious prize.

Kevin Staut has established himself as one of the top riders in the world and travels to Canada looking to claim his first Spruce Meadows title. Swiss leading rider Steve Guerdat has accumulated some impressive results in 2015. With a victory at the World Cup, held in Las Vegas earlier this year, he is a strong contender for the prize.

Rolex’s newest and youngest Testimonee, Bertram Allen from Ireland, will make his Spruce Meadows debut this year. At only 19 years-old, Allen has proved he has maturity beyond his years after becoming the youngest ever rider to compete in the 2014 World Equestrian Games in Caen, where he placed in the top 10.

ABOUT ROLEX

Leading brand of the Swiss watch industry, Rolex, headquartered in Geneva, enjoys an unrivalled reputation for quality and expertise the world over. Its Oyster watches, all certified as chronometers for their precision, are symbols of excellence, performance and prestige. Pioneer in the development of the wristwatch as early as 1905, the brand is at the origin of numerous major watchmaking innovations, such as the Oyster, the first waterproof wristwatch, launched in 1926, and the Perpetual rotor self-winding mechanism introduced in 1931. Rolex has registered over 400 patents in the course of its history. A truly integrated and independent manufacturing company, Rolex designs, develops and produces in-house all the essential components of its watches, from the casting of the gold alloys to the machining, crafting, assembly and finishing of the movement, case, dial and bracelet. Rolex is also actively involved in supporting the arts, sports, exploration, the spirit of enterprise, and the environment through a broad palette of sponsoring activities, as well as philanthropic programmes.

SPRUCE MEADOWS INTERNATIONAL – PAST WINNERS

2014   Ian Millar (CAN), Dixson
2013   Pieter Devos (BEL), Candy
2012   Oliver Philippaerts (BEL), Cabrio Van De Heffinck
2011   Eric Lamaze (CAN), Hickstead
2010   Jeroen Dubbledam (NED), Simon
2009   McLain Ward (USA), Sapphire
2008   Nick Skelton (GBR), Arko III
2007   Eric Lamaze (CAN), Hickstead
2006   Eugenie Angot (FRA), Cigale du Tallis
2005   Beezie Madden (USA), Judgement
2004   Jos Lansink (BEL), Cumano

Media Contacts:

Rolex SA
Virginie Chevailler
virginie.chevailler@rolex.com
+41 22 302 2761

Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Rod Kohler
rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 7770 647 662

Scott Brash Wins Second Major to Make History in Aachen, Germany

Aachen, Germany, 31 May 2015 – History was made today at the World Equestrian Festival Aachen in Germany when Scott Brash, riding Hello Sanctos, won the first equestrian Major of the year, the Rolex Grand Prix, and his second stage of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. Scott Brash is the first rider to achieve this remarkable feat since the introduction of the sport’s ultimate challenge in 2013, and goes to the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ in September hoping to be the only rider in history to win all three Majors in succession.

Germany’s Daniel Deusser riding Cornet d’Amour was second and France’s Simon Delestre on Ryan des Hayettes was third.

The World Equestrian Festival at Aachen, reduced in length to accommodate the European Championships later in the year, is considered by both the riders and fans as one of the finest equestrian competitions in the world. On the final day, even the cool weather which carried a chill in the air, did not affect the enthusiasm of the packed 45,000 capacity crowd who flooded in to watch the Rolex Grand Prix, the highlight of the three days.

The Rolex Grand Prix is notoriously challenging, and the riders who make the annual pilgrimage expect to be asked the toughest questions by course designer Frank Rothenberger. Initially it appeared as if clear rounds would be hard to come by, with many of the big names in the competition collecting penalties, but by the time all 40 riders had tackled the 13 obstacle course in the first round, Scott Brash, winner of the Rolex Grand Prix at CHI Geneva in December, led by less than half a second.

Ten riders were faultless going into Round 2, including Rolex Testimonees Kevin Staut and Kent Farrington; this was then reduced down to seven who went into the final jump off – little did the 45,000 spectators realise what was about to play out in front of them.

The riders always acknowledge the special role played by the spectators at Aachen, and the crowd did not fail to live up to expectation. Though naturally highly supportive of the German combinations, every horse and rider who entered the arena, regardless of which country they were from, were willed over every jump as the tension increased following each round in the jump off.

The first three riders all had a pole down, and then Germany’s Daniel Deusser set the benchmark with a clear round in what looked like an incredible time of 48.37 seconds.

The legendary Ludger Beerbaum, an Aachen favourite, followed and he too produced a clear round, but he could not match the time set by Deusser. France’s Simon Delestre was next to go clear, but was also not quick enough – the home crowd was beginning to think that the Rolex Grand Prix title could be staying in Germany.

Last into the arena was World No. 1 Scott Brash; his round started off slow, but his wonder horse Hello Sanctos made up time over the second half of the course, crossing the line in a nail biting 48.04 seconds to win the Rolex Grand Prix to a standing ovation and rapturous applause from the crowd.

Brash2Talking about his victory, Scott Brash said, “I don’t think it has quite sunk in yet; it has been my dream to win Aachen, so to win is a dream come true. I am ecstatic.

“What makes Aachen so special is the crowd; to jump in front of 45,000 people that are also very knowledgeable is great for us riders and brings out the best in us.”

Having started his Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping winning ‘cycle’ in Geneva, Scott Brash now travels to the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, 9-13 September 2015, to compete for the sport’s ultimate challenge and the €1m bonus. “To win one leg is already hard enough; to win two is extremely difficult; to win three is going to be really hard, but it would be silly not to try so I will definitely try and win it,” he said.

Rolex Testimonee Isabell Werth had another successful year in the Dressage at Aachen riding her bay gelding Don Johnson FRH. Producing a technically precise test in the Grand Prix, Werth claimed victory with a final score of 76.300%. The horse and rider combination continued to impress in the Freestyle producing an eye pleasing performance, with a final score of 81.200%, securing second place.

Talking about the two competitions, Isabell Werth said, “I am very pleased. Johnny was really good in both tests; the first was a win and the second was very close, and to come second in such a close final is not a shame and I am really happy with Johnny. It is great to be here and to have this show; Aachen is always very special; it is a great mixture of top sports, event and entertainment which makes it so special.”

To view the Rolex Grand Prix results, please click here.

Website:
www.rolex.com

Media Contacts:
Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Rod Kohler
rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 7770 647 662

The World’s Best Head to Aachen for the First Equestrian Major of the Year

Aachen, Germany, 21 May 2015 – Ask any of the world’s top equestrian athletes which of their sport’s major prizes they covet most and the answer is always the same. They dream of winning at Aachen.

In the high-performance world of international show jumping, the Rolex Grand Prix of Aachen carries the same status as a championship; indeed, it is often more competitive, the world’s greatest horse and rider combinations are there to take part in the event.

This year, the World Equestrian Festival at Aachen, the first equestrian Major of the year, has been condensed to three days of exceptional sport, and has an earlier date, 29-31 May, due to the European Championships for show jumping and dressage being held at the same venue later in the season.

AN ELITE GROUP OF EQUESTRIAN ATHLETES

Rolex’s relationship with equestrianism is well established and the leading luxury watchmaking brand resonance in a world where precision, performance and courage under pressure are key.

Rolex has developed particularly close partnerships with a handful of the very best riders in the world – its equestrian Testimonees. These men and women are notable not only for their exceptionally high levels of achievement, but also for the qualities of horsemanship and sportsmanship that elevate an athlete to hero status.

All of Rolex’s equestrian Testimonees have their sights set on Aachen. Three of them have experienced the heady taste of victory in Europe’s most prestigious show jumping prize, the Rolex Grand Prix.

The brilliant Brazilian rider Rodrigo Pessoa succeeded in 1994, when he was just 22 years old. The ‘first lady’ of German show jumping, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, soared to victory in the Rolex Grand Prix in 2005, and in 2010 Canada’s finest rider, Eric Lamaze, took the Rolex title.

They are eager once again to feel the intense atmosphere within Aachen’s vast main stadium in front of 40,000 of the sport’s most passionate, knowledgeable fans.

Tough competition will come from fellow Testimonees – the reigning Olympic champion, Switzerland’s Steve Guerdat; Frenchman Kevin Staut, already winner of an individual gold medal at the European Championships; and the outstanding American rider Kent Farrington, who finished second in the Rolex Grand Prix in Aachen last year.

Rolex’s sole dressage Testimonee, the World and Olympic gold medallist Isabell Werth, has won Aachen’s dressage Grand Prix a breath-taking 10 times. Still the most elegant and competitive of all riders, she will strive for an 11th victory in 2015.

A PARTNERSHIP BASED ON EXCELLENCE

Rolex has sponsored the Show Jumping Grand Prix at Aachen since 1999. It provides the most thrilling climax to the show, held in Aachen’s vast main stadium, where the atmosphere is never anything less than electric.

The course for the Grand Prix is widely acknowledged as one of the most demanding in the world. It tests horses and riders to the limit of their skill and talent, demanding absolute perfection and remarkable reserves of courage. Those who conquer the challenge always go on to prove their ability at the Olympics and World Championships; there are no “lucky” winners at Aachen.

Aachen is renowned for its exceptional facilities, immaculate organization and attention to detail. Athletes who take part in the action at Aachen feel that it raises their game simply to be there among the very best of their peers.

Rolex Testimonee Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum holds Aachen in the highest esteem. “I am always so thrilled and excited to go to Aachen; it is absolutely a highlight of my entire summer. Every great rider has ridden there and every great horse has competed there. The crowd is a huge motivating force for me in Aachen; to have 55,000 people cheering for you and hoping that you won’t touch a rail on the course is just an incredible feeling.”

THE SPORT’S ULTIMATE CHALLENGE

Rolex enjoys an enduring partnership with Aachen, which is acclaimed as the number one show in the world by both riders and fans. As a result a highly appropriate venue for the first leg of Show Jumping’s ultimate challenge – the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

This unique concept, created in 2013, unites the sport’s three Majors – the Grands Prix of Aachen, Spruce Meadows and CHI Geneva. Riders travel the globe from Germany to Canada and on to Switzerland, striving to claim this exceptional prize. No rider has yet managed to win more than one stage of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. The live contender as we approach Aachen is possibly the most exciting and captivating young rider in the sport.

Scotsman Scott Brash has leapt to the very top of Show Jumping since he was part of Britain’s gold medal-winning team at the London 2012 Olympics. He was the number one ranked rider in the world in 2013 and 2014.

He has continued to enjoy outstanding success since his victory in both the Rolex Grand Prix and the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final in Geneva in December. His tenacity, skill and exceptional horsemanship make him a worthy contender for the next step in his bid to take the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

ROLEX GRAND PRIX AACHEN – PREVIOUS WINNERS

2014 Christian Ahlmann (GER), Codex One
2013 Nick Skelton (GBR), Big Star
2012 Michael Whitaker (GBR), GIG Amai
2011 Janne Friederike Meyer (GER), Cellagon Lambrasco
2010 Eric Lamaze (CAN), Hickstead
2009 Denis Lynch (IRL), Lantinus
2008 Albert Zoer (NED), Sam
2007 Elizabeth Madden (USA), Authentic
2006 Jos Lansink (BEL), Cumano
2005 Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, (GER) Shutterfly

Website
www.rolex.com

Media Contacts:

Rolex SA
Virginie Chevailler
virginie.chevailler@rolex.com
+41 22 302 2761

Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Rod Kohler
rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 7770 647 662

Don’t Forget Sunday’s Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Television Broadcast on NBC Sports Network

Don’t forget to watch and set your DVR for NBC Sports Network on Sunday, September 28, from 4:30-6:00 pm EST! The exciting $1.5 Million CP International presented by Rolex will be aired to the U.S. broadcast television market to more than 85 million homes on NBC Sports Network. As the feature event of the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament CSIO 5* and most prestigious show jumping competition in the world, the $1.5 Million CP International presented by Rolex on NBC Sports Network can’t be missed!

The $1.5 Million CP International presented by Rolex is the second leg of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. Watch and find out who is next in line to try and take equestrian sport’s most sought-after title.

U.S. viewers, please visit http://www.nbcsports.com/tv-listings to find the channel for NBC Sports Network in your area.

For more information and full schedule, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

For further information on the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, please visit www.rolexgrandslam.com.

Based in Calgary, Canada, Spruce Meadows is the creation of the Southern family who built a Show Jumping complex at the foothills of the Alberta Rocky Mountains. It was in 1976 that the first Spruce Tournaments were held, with annual spectator attendances reaching over 50,000 by the end of the decade. Today, Spruce Meadows boasts one of the greatest outdoor equestrian venues in the world and offers an incredible experience for riders and fans alike. Spruce Meadows focuses on the organization and hosting of show jumping tournaments of unmatched quality for junior, amateur and professional athletes in a manner that reflects basic family values in a clean, green and welcoming environment that celebrates the horse and encourages the breeding and training of quality sport horses and the teaching and development of athletes. For more information on Spruce Meadows, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
info@jenniferwoodmedia.com
803.240.7488
jenniferwoodmedia.com

Spruce Meadows Media Services
caroline.weilinger@sprucemeadows.com
403.974.4232
sprucemeadows.com

Canada’s Legendary Ian Millar Captures the CP International at Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’

The New Live Contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping

15 September 2014 – Canada’s legendary Ian Millar, riding his 11 year old bay gelding Dixson, in front of over 89,000 equestrian fans, won yesterday’s CP International presented by Rolex at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, and now becomes the live contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

In front of a sell-out crowd bathed in early autumn sunshine, course designer Leopoldo Palacios had laid out a tough first round track which whittled the original 47 horse and rider combinations down to the 12 who went through to the second round. In the 19 years that Leopoldo has been designing in the International Ring, there has only ever been two jump-offs, so just reaching the two-horse jump-off was a considerable achievement in itself for Millar and Reed Kessler from the USA.

Millar, who has competed at every Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ since the inaugural tournament in 1976, had to use every ounce of experience to overcome Reed Kessler riding Cylana in the jump-off. But the 47 year age gap counted in Millar’s favour as he was able to watch Kessler ride a third clear round before coming into the ring and matching her achievement, but 2.3 seconds faster to win the title. Marie Etter from Switzerland was third riding Admirable.

Speaking after his victory, Ian Millar said, “You know, the afternoon goes by in a blur – it took several hours but it just happened so fast and everything just turns on the horses’ footfall. It’s incredible when you consider that there’s 47 in the competition and virtually every horse and rider combination is extremely good at what they do, otherwise they wouldn’t be here – and any one of them on a given day can win, so the set of circumstances that has to fall together and what has to fall in line for one person to win is quite incredible.”

At one stage the weather threatened to dominate the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, one of the three equestrian Majors, and part of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

Unseasonal autumn snow greeted the riders arriving earlier in the week and, facing weather conditions more akin to late December than early September, the Spruce Meadows team worked throughout the day and night to clear the huge International Ring of 12 inches of snow covering it, and the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ competition was able to get underway on Thursday.

Many of the world’s greatest riders, including Rolex Testimonees Eric Lamaze, Steve Guerdat and Kevin Staut, were appearing at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, having flown directly from France following the World Equestrian Games. Both Steve Guerdat and Christian Ahlmann, holders of the Rolex Grand Prix titles from CHI Geneva and CHIO Aachen respectively were in contention for a Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping bonus for winning two of the three shows, but despite a top 10 finish for Steve in the Grand Prix, the bonus remains unclaimed.

Spruce Meadows, which first staged an equestrian competition 39 years ago, is one of the three equestrian Majors, but despite the sheer size and scaled of the venue, it maintains a unique atmosphere which differentiates it from the fellow Majors at CHI Geneva and CHIO Aachen.

Spruce Meadows President Linda Southern-Heathcott commented, “Spruce Meadows was a very small venue in the beginning and the sport was very young, so my mother and father had to create a family atmosphere and we believe that the athletes and the corporate supporters are part of our family, and the media are fans. Our place is their place, for them to enjoy and it is their home and we invite people from around the world into our home and so it’s a special place that way and just because we have always really strived to have that feeling.”

To Rolex Testimonee Eric Lamaze, Spruce Meadows holds a special place in his heart.

“Spruce Meadows is unique,” said Lamaze. “They have never changed the tradition here. There is nothing else like it from the organizational side of it. The people around these grounds are so helpful and are so giving of their time to make Spruce Meadows what it is.”

The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping now moves indoors to the CHI Geneva in December where Ian Millar will be aiming to take the next steps towards the €1 million bonus.

www.rolex.com
www.rolexgrandslam.com

Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Rod Kohler
rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 7770 647 662

Snow Won’t Dampen Incredible Sport at Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’

Photo © Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Calgary, AB, Canada – September 9, 2014 – Despite an unusual accumulation of snow on the ground, the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament is full steam ahead for five days of the best equestrian sport in the world from September 10-14. Competition in the International Ring will be held tomorrow; both the $50,000 TELUS Cup 1.50m and the $85,000 Finning Cup 1.60m have been adjusted to now be held in a speed format, with the TELUS Cup starting at 1 p.m. Weather conditions are expected to improve as the week proceeds towards the biggest events of the year: Saturday’s $300,000 BMO Nations’ Cup and Sunday’s $1.5 Million CP International, presented by Rolex – the second leg of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

Spruce Meadows welcomed the best show jumpers in the world this week, some of whom competed at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy. Included in this group is team and individual bronze medalist Beezie Madden of the United States, who came directly to Calgary following her “Final Four” performance this past Sunday.

Madden said she has never competed in snow before, but is confident the International Ring will be prepared and ready for tomorrow’s competition. “They have it cleared off already, and I’m sure it will be great,” she said. Madden brought her 2013 FEI World Cup Finals champion partner, Simon, and 2012 Olympic Games partner, Coral Reef Via Volo. Both have had a good rest and are prepared to compete. “It’s an exciting atmosphere here, and I have two top horses here, so I’m really lucky that way. Both of them are really fresh coming in,” she noted.

With the increase in prize money to $1.5 million for the CP International, presented by Rolex, Madden and her fellow competitors will be at the top of their game. “It’s huge; it’s why you see everyone scrambling to get here. You can make a lot of money on Sunday!” she commented.

Spruce Meadows Senior Vice President, Ian Allison, confirmed, “It is all systems go. The footing is superb. There hasn’t been much moisture on it; it’s just unfortunate that it came as snow! We decided to face it with a smile on our face and determine what we can do. We have a very good plan. The ring has been cleared of snow, and we will do that again if there is snowfall overnight. We are committed to having a great week of good friendship, sport, and commerce. We’re aiming for the best edition of the ‘Masters’ ever.”

Compliments go to the entire Spruce Meadows team, said Spruce Meadows President Linda Southern-Heathcott. “They were shoveling by hand, cleaning the International Ring. The events will go on, and it takes teamwork to produce an event. That started 39 years ago with Marg and Ron Southern,” she explained. “At Spruce Meadows, it’s about the athletes, the media, corporate supporters, fans, the Equi-Fair exhibitors, and bringing them all together in the spirit of teamwork. We work very hard to offer that with great spirit, great pride, and great sport.”

Fans are encouraged to come out and support the athletes; the majority of the seating surrounding the International Ring is covered. While the weather is chilly, a warm, inviting environment is nearby for before and after competition. The Equi-Fair sees more than 200,000 visitors at Spruce Meadows every year, and with 174 booths showcasing the best in equine and non-equine art and products in the Equi-Plex, the Gallery on the Green, the Spruce Meadows Tack Shop & Plaza Exhibit space, anyone is sure to find just what they’re looking for! For more information on these activities, and everything going on around the grounds, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

The schedule for this week’s ‘Masters’ includes:

  • Wednesday, September 10: $50,000 TELUS Cup 1.50m and $85,000 Finning Cup 1.60m
  • Thursday, September 11: $50,000 ATCO Structures and Logistics Cup 1.50m and $125,000 CANA Cup 1.60m
  • Friday, September 12: The Mercedes-Benz “Evening of the Horse” featuring the $210,000 Tourmaline Oil Cup 1.60m followed by the $75,000 ATCO Electric ‘Circuit’ Six Bar under the lights, the RCMP Musical Ride, and Band of the Welsh Guards playing live music to the fireworks display
  • Saturday, September 13: $125,000 Suncor Winning Round 1.50m and $300,000 BMO Nations’ Cup
  • Sunday, September 14: $85,000 Akita Drilling Cup 1.50m and $1.5 Million CP International, presented by Rolex

For more information and full schedule, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

For further information on the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, please visit www.rolexgrandslam.com.

Based in Calgary, Canada, Spruce Meadows is the creation of the Southern family who built a Show Jumping complex at the foothills of the Alberta Rocky Mountains. It was in 1976 that the first Spruce Tournaments were held, with annual spectator attendances reaching over 50,000 by the end of the decade. Today, Spruce Meadows boasts one of the greatest outdoor equestrian venues in the world and offers an incredible experience for riders and fans alike. Spruce Meadows focuses on the organization and hosting of show jumping tournaments of unmatched quality for junior, amateur and professional athletes in a manner that reflects basic family values in a clean, green and welcoming environment that celebrates the horse and encourages the breeding and training of quality sport horses and the teaching and development of athletes. For more information on Spruce Meadows, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
info@jenniferwoodmedia.com
803.240.7488
jenniferwoodmedia.com

Spruce Meadows Media Services
caroline.weilinger@sprucemeadows.com
403.974.4232
sprucemeadows.com

Christian Ahlmann Faultless in His First Rolex Grand Prix Victory at CHIO Aachen

Winner Christian Ahlmann riding Codex One. Photos © Rolex/Kit Houghton.

20 July 2014, Aachen, GER: Germany’s Christian Ahlmann today produced a faultless display of riding to win his first Rolex Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen, and in so doing, became the new live contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

Riding his stallion Codex One, who has only recently returned to top flight competition following a long injury, Ahlmann was one of only five riders who produced double clear rounds on a challenging Frank Rothenberger designed course. The jump-off resembled an international penalty shoot-out, with three riders representing Germany and two from the USA. Going into the ring first Ahlmann rode a deliberately aggressive but clear round setting a tough challenge for his fellow riders.

Knowing that only a clear round would make the grade, the four who followed Ahlmann into the ring, Marcus Ehning, Kent Farrington, Daniel Deusser and Lauren Hough, clearly felt the pressure and each had one fence down. Ahlmann was the only rider to ride three clear rounds to win the Rolex Grand Prix crown and the first equestrian Major of 2014.

Ahlmann, like many of this year’s competitors, had dreamt of winning the Rolex Grand Prix at Aachen from a very young age and felt the pressure going into the stadium for the jump-off. “The pressure was there when I went into the jump-off first, and I therefore tried to not take a major risk but put my colleagues under pressure so that they would be forced to take some big risks. This is a dream come true for me and for sure, I will be at the Spruce Meadows Masters in September!”

Second place Kent Farrington riding Voyeur
Second place Kent Farrington riding Voyeur

Over 360,000 spectators enjoyed not only top class competition but superb weather during the ten days of competition at CHIO Aachen, with the final week temperatures soaring to the mid 30 degrees centigrade four days in a row. Sunday came with a cooling breeze, making conditions ideal for the highlight of the show, the Rolex Grand Prix.

This year’s CHIO Aachen featured many of Rolex’s equestrian Testimonees, including all the Show Jumping riders Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, Steve Guerdat, Kevin Staut, Eric Lamaze and Rodrigo Pessoa, as well as Zara Phillips and Isabell Werth. Recently selected to represent Great Britain at the World Equestrian Games, Zara was part of the team who came second in the Nations Cup Eventing at Aachen, her first major contest since the birth of her daughter Mia in January. Isabell enjoyed an excellent few days of competition in the Dressage arena with an individual victory and four Top 5 finishes in the nine competitions.

But the glory goes to Christian Ahlmann with a victory which will etch his name in the record books. As Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, a former winner of the Rolex Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen, said, “The Rolex Grand Prix on Sunday at CHIO Aachen is, in my opinion, the equivalent to winning a gold medal at the Olympic Games. To win is a highlight of a rider’s career and to potentially become a Grand Slam winner is just a dream come true.”

Rolex is a partner to some of the greatest equestrian shows in the world, including the three Majors: CHIO Aachen, the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, and CHI Geneva. These shows form the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping which is the first global initiative to reward the outstanding rider who wins the Grand Prix at each show in succession.

Rider Quotes:

Kent Farrington:

“This is an amazing show; you know, I’d say this is the best show in the world. There are unbelievable crowds here; you know I think this is by far the pinnacle of our sport.

Rolex has done amazing things for our sport and I think that it’s brought it to a higher level around the world with their support now in the United States in addition to what they’ve always done here and at venues like Aachen and Geneva. You know, it really brings our sport to a new level of professional sport.

For me it was really exciting just to be here. I was thrilled with how my horses performed this week… unfortunately a little bad luck at the last fence here – I was hoping we could pull it all off. If I had to do it again I don’t know if I would have changed anything; I think that was just bad luck.”

Third place Marcus Ehning riding Plot Blue
Third place Marcus Ehning riding Plot Blue

Marcus Ehning:

“I was really proud of my horse; he’s 17 years old. He’s already jumped amazingly in the Nations Cup and two rounds clear and one fault in the jump off… the time was good, a bit unlucky but I’m really happy with him.

For me this [Aachen] is the best show in the world and for sure as a German it’s always amazing how the crowd is, how the public is… so many spectators, lovely weather this year and I think it was the perfect show this week.

Rolex is an amazing sponsor for us and we are very proud about it and for us it’s a really big goal. Rolex pushed the sport forward in the showjumping and we are really happy about it.”

For further media information, please contact:
Georgie Wells
Tel: +44 207 592 1207
Email: georgina@revolutionsports.co.uk

www.rolex.com
www.rolexgrandslam.com

Steve Guerdat Wins the Rolex Grand Prix at CHI Geneva

Steve Guerdat (SUI) and Nino des Buissonnets, winner of the Rolex Grand Prix, Geneva 2013 © Rolex/Kit Houghton.

New Live Contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping

Geneva, Switzerland 15 December 2013, In front of a huge crowd of over 9,500 fans, Switzerland’s Steve Guerdat riding the great Nino des Buissonnets, today won the Rolex Grand Prix at the CHI Geneva, and becomes the live contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

Each time he entered the arena, the Swiss crowd greeted Rolex Testimonee Guerdat with wave after wave of cheers, which at one stage seemed to rock the foundations of the huge Palexpo Arena. He was one of 10 riders to make it through to the jump-off and, fourth to go, his time of 43.26 seconds was only briefly threatened by the World No. 1 Scott Brash (GBR), who produced a second clear round just 0.32 seconds behind Guerdat.

“I get a little scared sometimes on what is going to be next and how I am ever going to be able to give to the fans who have already had so much success with me here over the years. But every year I come back and something new happens and some bigger wins and it just feels amazing!” said a delighted Guerdat.

“Nino has won so much already since the Olympics – he is not jumping a lot but every time he goes out he is in the top and again today. He is just in a class of his own,” continued Guerdat.

At one stage it looked as though Belgium’s Peter Devos, riding Candy, could make it a ‘double’ by winning a second leg of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping – he was the ‘live’ contender having won the CN International presented by Rolex, at Spruce Meadows in September. Having gone clear in the first round he went into the jump-off showing good form, but two poles down and eight faults put paid to his chances of taking the Rolex Grand Prix title.

It was a truly exciting Rolex Grand Prix, with 10 superb spectacular clears around the 14 fence course. The first clear came from the Rolex Grand Prix winner at Calgary – Pieter Devos and Candy. Athina Onassis Miranda (GRE) rode a brilliant round, but was very unlucky to get one time fault on AD Camille Z. Her husband Alvaro de Miranda (BRA) was next into the arena and rode a great clear, followed by Hans-Dieter Dreher (GER) who also left the ring on a clean sheet on the stunning Embassy II. Then followed seven more riders with clear rounds; Luciana Diniz (POR), Gerco Schröder (NED), Simon Delestre (FRA), Scott Brash, Kevin Staut (FRA) and Patrice Delaveau (FRA).

The 2013 CHI Geneva has been the most successful in the show’s long history with over 40,000 spectators packing into the Palexpo over the four days to watch the some of the world’s best riders including Rolex Testimonees Kevin Staut, Eric Lamaze, Meredith Michaesl-Beerbaum and Rodrigo Pessoa compete at the highest level of the sport.

Alban Poudret, Sports Director for CHI Geneva, commented: “It is like a dream; we are flying at the Palexpo Arena. For us, always when Steve wins, it’s a big gift, because he is the rider of the show. But this year it was something special you know with the Rolex Grand Slam and more pressure for us, more pressure for Steve, for everybody. To have him winning, it’s really a dream come true, but I think he is even better when he has big pressure. He has won eight major Grands Prix in Geneva in nine years; it’s incredible. Nobody did that. The bigger the pressure, the better he is!”

The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping now takes a break until CHIO Aachen from 11-20 July 2014, but Rolex continues to support the sport at the highest level and will be the Official Timepiece at the 12-week Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida from 9 January to 31 March 2014, and also at Indoor Brabant from 20 to 23 March 2014.

The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping features three of the world’s greatest equestrian shows – the CHIO Aachen, the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament and CHI Geneva – and is the first global initiative to reward the outstanding rider who wins the Grand Prix at each show in succession. The winner of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping will be rewarded with a €1 million bonus prize.

For details of the final placings in the CHI Geneva Rolex Grand Prix, please click: http://results.scgvisual.com/2013/geneve/r21.html.

Websites:
www.rolex.com
www.rolexgrandslam.com

Rolex Equestrianism Press Room:
equestrianismpressroom.rolex.com

Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping – The Rules

The rules of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping are simple: any rider that wins the Grand Prix at each of the three shows consecutively will receive €1m on top of the prize-money for each show’s Grand Prix. Moreover, any rider that wins two out of the three show’s Grands Prix will also receive a bonus.

If the Grands Prix at two shows are won in succession, the bonus will be €500,000. If a rider is successful in qualifying for the “two out of three mode”, but doesn’t claim the victories at two consecutive shows’ Grands Prix, the bonus will be €250,000. It is only the rider that counts, not the horse i.e. it is possible to claim the bonus riding different horses. This system is infinite; it is not limited to a calendar year.

Three wins in a row – €1,000,000
Two wins in a row – €500,000
Two wins out of three (not consecutively) – €250,000

Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Rod Kohler
rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 7770 647 662

Niels Knippertz
press@rolexgrandslam.com
+49 241 9171 180

Setting the Stage for the World’s Greatest Indoor Show

10 December 2013 – The world-renowned CHI Geneva begins on Thursday 12 December, and marks the third show of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. Following the release of two special films dedicated to celebrating this significant occasion, Rolex has released the third and final film.

In this concluding film of the series, Steve Guerdat, Sophie Mottu Morel and Alban Poudret identify the different components that make the course and competition at the CHI Geneva world-famous.

To download an MP4 version of the film, please click here.

All three films can be found on the World of Rolex YouTube channel which can be seen by clicking here.

For further media information, please contact:
Rod Kohler
Revolution Sports + Entertainment
E: rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
T: +44(0)207 592 1207