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.
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.
Talking 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.
Scott Brash (GBR), pictured here at the Miami Beach 2015 CSI5* on Hello Sanctos, is back as world Jumping number one at the top of the Longines Rankings. (FEI/Amy Dragoo-arnd.nl)
Lausanne (SUI), 7 May 2015 – Scott Brash (GBR) is now back at the top of the Longines Rankings as world Jumping number one.
Brash, 29, the youngest member of the London 2012 Olympic Games gold medal winning British team, jumped into the lead of the Longines Rankings for the first time in his career in December 2013, and held on for an impressive 16 months.
Germany’s Daniel Deusser then managed to break this run last month, and headed to the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final in Las Vegas (USA) to defend his title wearing the coveted Longines Rankings leader armband.
Brash now has a 143-point lead on second-placed Deusser, and the reigning Olympic champion Steve Guerdat (SUI) has now been catapulted into third place from ninth in the Longines Rankings after winning the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final in Las Vegas.
Scott Brash in 2015
Brash, from Peebles in Scotland, is no stranger to success. After his Olympic début at London 2012, he went on to win team gold and individual bronze at the ECCO FEI European Jumping Championships in 2013.
In the same year, he became the youngest athlete to win the Longines Global Champions Tour, winning it again in 2014, and is currently top of the leaderboard for this year’s series.
Miami, FL – April 5, 2015 – World No. 1 Scott Brash was victorious for the second night in a row on Miami Beach Saturday evening as he galloped away with the inaugural Longines Global Champions Tour of Miami Beach Grand Prix title aboard Hello Sanctos. This was the two-time Longines GCT Champ’s fifth Grand Prix win in the last three seasons as he continues to dominate the Tour in spectacular fashion.
Bassem Hassan Mohammed (QAT) and his relatively new ride Palloubet D Halong put in the performance of their young partnership to take Silver. While 2014 Longines GCT of Shanghai Grand Prix winner Pieter Devos (BEL) and Candy finished with a worthy Bronze medal. From the VIP Lounge, Michael Bloomberg, Bruce Springsteen, HE Sheikh Joaan Al Thani and Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine watched world-class sport at its very best.
Speaking from the VIP Hospitality Lounge, Mr. Bloomberg said: “I think this is a wonderful thing for Miami and for the economy of Miami. This could become like the Formula 1 is to Monaco and places like that not just the people who come to watch the show, the people who support it, the people who work in the hotels where we all stay, the restaurants. It is amazing the hard work that goes into this.”
Having claimed a strong victory with his new mount Hello Forever in yesterday’s 42nd American Invitational, Scott Brash went into the Grand Prix a firm favourite, but facing hot competition from a stellar line-up of world-class riders from around the globe.
The first round of the Grand Prix was a testing and technical course which caught out many an experienced combination. The tight, awkward distances, tall uprights and sharp corners demanded precision, control and power. There were no clear bogey fences, though an airy vertical on a dog-leg following the Longines combination claimed many.
Of the 50 Grand Prix starters, 12 clears proceeded to the 2nd round, including Katie Dinan (USA) and Stakorado, Margie Goldstein-Engle (USA) and Royce, Denis Lynch (IRE) and Ho Go van de Padenborre, Luciana Diniz (POR) and Apollonia, Beezie Madden (USA) and Simon, Kent Farrington (USA) and Voyeur, and Eric Lamaze (CAN) and Rosana du Park.
The top 18 riders came back to try their talents against another Uliano Vezzani course, including four on 4 faults. The U.S. had a strong showing with seven riders going through to the next round. All eyes were on Scott Brash and his 2012 Olympic mount as the combinations came back for their next test against the course.
The second round saw an early clear from Laura Kraut (USA) and Nouvelle carrying four faults from the first round. But subsequent clean rounds were few and far between until Bassem Mohammed and Palloubet D Halong notched up the first double clear. The course was twisty and with many turns, requiring immense control, with big oxers demanding scope and care.
Beezie Madden and Simon agonisingly lowered the final fence, but were swiftly followed by reigning European Champion Roger-Yves Bost (FRA) and Nippon d’Elle who were the second double clear. It wasn’t until near the end of the first round that Scott Brash and Hello Sanctos joined Bosty and Bassem in the final showdown – the combination looked on cracking form from the very beginning.
Bassem set the standard first to go in the jump-off, clear in a time of 39.74s. Second to go, Bosty risked a tight turn back to a tall upright and picked up a refusal, leaving him in 4th place. Scott Brash knew what he had to do and executed his plan with foot-perfect precision to stop the clock in 38.57s. Last to go, Pieter Devos pushed his mare, recently returned from a long break from competition, but lowered an early fence in the tricky jump-off course leaving Scott Brash and Hello Sanctos once more unbeatable.
Scott will be back in action in Antwerp in a few weeks once again hot on the trail on the Longines GCT Championship, which if he wins once again this season, will be his 3rd in a row – a truly incredible feat.
Todd Minikus wins the Elm Rock Farm Trophy
On flying form, Todd Minikus (USA) raced away with the Elm Rock Farm Trophy Saturday afternoon with Quality Girl, beating the world-class opposition with a supremely quick round to take the class in 54.41s. Marlon Zanotelli (BRA) had another great result with Zerlin M to finish 2nd in 55.85s, with Pablo Barrios (VEN) and Zara Leandra finishing 3rd in 56.76s.
It was another gorgeous day on Miami Beach and the public filled the grandstand and pressed against the arena fencing to watch the speed class unfold. The beautiful arena filled with spectacular flowers and eye-catching jumps proved a mega draw for nearby sun-worshipers who were drawn over to watch these fabulous horses and riders in action.
Miami Beach, FL – April 3, 2015 – It has been 29 years since a rider representing Great Britain has led the coveted American Invitational victory gallop, but today, the world’s number one rider, Scott Brash (GBR), clinched the victory during the 43rd $127,500 American Invitational. Aboard Hello Forever, Brash broke the beam in 33.35 seconds to outrun his fellow eight contenders in a nine-horse jump off and take back the title after nearly a 30-year drought for his homeland.
It was an occasion of firsts for Brash. For many, the American Invitational is the crown jewel of show jumping, eluding many at the top of the sport. Although it was only Brash’s first time attempting the toilsome track, he left no stone unturned with his eye set firmly on the victory.
In its long history, today marks only the second time a rider from Great Britain has won the notable event. Brash followed in the footsteps of the late Tim Grubb, who rode Linky to victory at Tampa Stadium back in 1986. Grubb, a British Olympic Silver medalist, was the first foreigner to take the Invitational title and counting Brash’s win today marks only the fourth time a rider outside the U.S. has led the round of honor.
Italian course designer, Uliano Vezzani, created the difficult track, challenging the field of 52 riders to 16 efforts in a tight time allowed of 81 seconds. He featured a tricky double combination set on the rail, a liverpool, a second double combination featuring a vertical to an oxer, as well as large square oxers and open distances. Faults racked up throughout the course, with no definite bogey and only nine horse and rider combinations would find their way into the tiebreaker.
This was the first appearance Brash made stateside all winter circuit, traveling exclusively to the Longines Global Champions Tour in Miami Beach with two of his top horses. He was only the third to return for the jump off, and with six competitors hot on his heels, he knew that he would have to push the throttle with Hello Forever to make them chase his time. He took a tight turn to the third obstacle, racing around the corner to the square Longines oxer from the tight double combination. His tight track and quick turns obliterated the previous times.
“The American Invitational is a very prestigious event. We hear about it every year, but unfortunately we’re never here to jump in it,” Brash said. “It’s very nice to be here and to be a part of it. I’m really glad that the result worked out in the end. We always read about it, but unfortunately we are never here to jump in it. Jan [Tops] has brought the tour here, and it’s great that the American Invitational is at this show. Hopefully if it can stay here, I think it’s going to be an even bigger and better event every year.”
Beginning in 1972, the American Invitational was designed as a reward for the riders at the end of a long circuit. Although international riders have always been welcome, this is the first time that riders representing three different countries took hold of the top three spots.
It was Sheikh Ali Bin Khalid Al Thani of Qatar and Concordija, owned by First Sport Horses AG, who took the second place position less than a tenth of a second shy of Brash’s time. He opted to leave out a stride in the turn to the third fence, and then raced through the turn after the double combination nearly catching Brash’s pace.
Al Thani said, “For me, it was very good. With number one in the world, I was happy ending up second. It was a fast jump-off and I tried my best. I couldn’t catch him, but I was happy.”
Reigning Show Jumping World Cup Finals Champion, Daniel Deusser (GER), and Pironella would end the event in the third place with a speedy but more conservative time of 34.14 seconds. He admitted that although he tried to catch Brash, he was pleased with his third place finish.
“The riders, we are very proud to be here; for us it is a super event. It cannot be much better actually. For the class, for myself, I’m very happy with the third place,” Deusser said. “My horse is still very young, and not too experienced in these classes. I missed maybe a little bit to the last fence. In the end, Scott was very, very fast, and that’s the reason that he is number one in the world.”
Paige Johnson and Dakota captured the fourth place with a double clear in 34.63 seconds, while Schuyler Riley and Dobra de Porceyo finished fifth in 35.46 seconds. The fastest four-faulter was Georgina Bloomberg aboard Calenda, crossing the timers in 35.33 seconds to round out the top six.
Today’s victory came aboard a new mount for Brash, having only been paired with Hello Forever for four months. “He is quite a new horse to me,” admitted Brash. “He’s quite inexperienced actually, but he’s a competitive horse. I just tried to stay as smooth as I could, and as tight as I could, and tried to see what my horse could do. It worked out in the end. I did think that Sheikh Ali was going to get me at the end there. It was very, very tight.”
Brash has held the title of Number One Rider in the world for 16 months, only two months shy of Marcus Ehning’s record. “I think this man on my right, Daniel [Deusser], is just about to take it off me. I better clean the armband and get it ready, probably tomorrow [laughs].”
At the conclusion of the Miami Longines Global Champions Tour, Brash, as well as the others at the top of the podium, will pack their bags to head out to the next endeavor. Deusser plans to defend his title as the World Cup Champion, while Brash is focusing on European shows and following the Longines GCT.
President of Stadium Jumping, Michael Morrissey, said, “I think the event was great. It’s so unique to be out here at the beach. To team up with a world class organization in a world-class city putting on an event like this was fantastic. Gene [Mische], who has passed away, would be very proud of that this event became so terrific, especially here in Miami.”
Morrissey continued, “Our goal and our plan is to return to the Longines Global Champions Tour in the future. The team that Jan put together is second to nobody. Because of the great team that he has assembled, I think the production of this is second to none in this country. It was a great event. The course designer did a great job, and it was a great class. It was a great jump-off. It was exciting and kept people waiting for the next one to try to win. I feel like it has everything.”
The Longines Global Champions Tour first found its home in Wellington in 2004, when Tops and Mische worked in tandem to kick off what would become an empire in Europe for the sport of show jumping. The Miami Longines Global Champions Tour marks the series’ 10-year anniversary, and the kick-off event brings the event full circle as the series returns to its pilot location – South Florida.
President of the Longines Global Champions Tour, Jan Tops, concluded, “I think it’s important that we connect the United States. It’s a very important market, especially for good riders, and it needed to be here as well again. We were very happy that we could organize the American Invitational here, and working with Stadium Jumping was spectacular. Number one in the world won it, and he won it good, but all the riders gave him very good competition. It was very exciting to the last rider, and I think it worked out very well.”
The Miami Longines Global Champions Tour continues tomorrow with the $600,000 CSI5* 1.60m Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix with two different rounds against the clock with a jump-off. For more information on Stadium Jumping and the American Invitational, please visit www.stadiumjumping.com. To learn more about the Longines Global Champions Tour, please visit www.globalchampionstour.com.
Miami, FL – April 3, 2015 – World No. 1 and reigning Longines Global Champions Tour Champion Scott Brash (GBR) and Hello Forever won the feature class of the day, the historic American Invitational. Following a thrilling jump-off, Scott set the pace early with his new ride, and though they tried their best to catch him, Sheikh Ali bin Khalid Al Thani (QAT) and Concordija and on-form Daniel Deusser (GER) and Pironella had to settle for second and third, respectively.
Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine presented the prizes to the winners: “This is absolutely incredible. We are so honoured to have this amazing Longines Global Champions Tour event right on the sands of Miami Beach and we know this is just the beginning of a long-term event. We will welcome you back next year. This is just absolutely exciting for everyone to watch – all the tourists, all the residents and congratulations to Scott. This is fabulous!”
This was the first really testing class of the event ahead of tomorrow’s Longines Global Champions Tour of Miami Beach Grand Prix, as 53 horses took to the ocean-side arena for the 42nd American Invitational. Many of the Florida-based horse and rider combinations had been used to the large open arenas of Wellington, whereas for many who have flown over from Europe, this is their first outdoor event of the season.
As sunbathers gathered in around the unbelievable arena and the sun began to sink on this picture-perfect location this afternoon, some top-class show jumping unfolded on Miami Beach. Uliano Vezzani’s 1.55m first round course began with an inviting spread fence, but the tests came thick and fast from that point onward.
Home pair Schuyler Riley (USA) and Dobra de Porceyo was the first to jump clear, quickly followed by Georgina Bloomberg (USA), Michael Whitaker (GBR), Paige Johnson (USA) and Audrey Coulter (USA). Many top names fell by the wayside, caught out by the sharp corners and testing distances. Toward the end of the first round, Luciana Diniz (POR) and Lady Lindenhof jumped a neat clear following a clean round from Daniel Deusser (GER) and Pironella, and finishing with a great zero score round from a thrilled Sheikh Ali bin Khalid Al Thani (QAT) and Concordija.
Schuyler Riley and Dobra de Porceyo set the standard in the 9-horse jump-off with a clear in 35.46s from first to go, but Scott Brash and Hello Forever swept around the course wiping over 2s off her time. Paige Johnson and Dakota put in a fantastic round to finish just over one second behind Brash, but Germany’s Daniel Deusser and Pironella slotted in between the two in 34.14s. Last to go, Al Thani threw caution to the wind but was unable to catch the World No. 1 finishing in 33.48s.
The snug arena, crowded on all sides by an enthusiastic crowd, creates an intense atmosphere so it will take a top horse and rider team to win the main event tomorrow afternoon, the opening Longines GCT Grand Prix of the season. Watch the Longines Global Champions Tour of Miami Beach Grand Prix live on www.globalchampionstour.com via GCT TV; see highlights on NBC Sports Network Sunday 5th April 3.30pm – 4.30pm (EST) or on Eurosport on Sunday at 8pm (CET).
Geneva, Switzerland, 14 December 2014 – In sport, legends are created by repeated success at the very highest level. The remarkable Scott Brash today proved why he is the very best that equestrian sport has seen in a long time, when he won the third equestrian Major of the year, the Rolex Grand Prix at CHI Geneva. Brash adds this title to his Rolex Top 10 Final victory, which he claimed less than 48 hours earlier.
Riding the majestic Hello Sanctos, on whom he has enjoyed huge success in 2014, Brash was one of 12 riders who went through to the jump-off from the original 40 on the start list.
The first four into the ring all produced a clear second round, and it quickly became obvious that it was going to take a very special performance to take the Rolex Grand Prix title. But, as he has proved all year, Brash thrives on tough challenges.
He was the sixth rider to enter the huge arena at the Palexpo and, when he left it, he had yet again produced a fast, clear round that was to become the benchmark for the remaining six riders to attempt to better. Dismounted and pacing the warm-up ring in the company of Hello Santos’ owners, Brash had to go through the nerve wracking experience of watching his fellow riders try and better his jump-off time of 35.69 seconds.
Brash’s time remained relatively safe until France’s Roger Yves Bost entered the arena, clearly with every intent to put everything on the line to challenge for the title. The crowd was hushed but the atmosphere crackled, as Qoud’Coeur de la Loge seemed to fly around the course. But their final time, 35.94 seconds, was still not quick enough, and when the final rider brought one pole down, the Rolex title belonged to Brash.
Speaking about the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, Scott Brash said, “I think you have to make it your aim once you win one leg, because what Rolex has done in putting sponsorship up for these shows is just incredible and it’s kept our sport at a high, high level and raised our sport even more. So I think with that goal in mind, anyone who wins one leg will be targeting the next leg.”
Winning a Major defines a sportsman’s career, and the Rolex Grand Prix, the third stage of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, is one of the most difficult titles to claim. Brash now becomes the live contender and travels to Aachen in May 2015 to attempt to win his second title in the cycle, and claim the €1m bonus on offer to any rider who can win the Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen, Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ and CHI Geneva.
CHI Geneva is renowned within the equestrian community for its giant arena, which is at least twice the size of any other indoor venue, and the popularity of the show has never been higher, with the huge grandstands completely sold-out for the Rolex Grand Prix. Forty of the world’s greatest riders travelled to Geneva to challenge for the title, including Rolex Testimonees Kent Farrington, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, Kevin Staut, and last year’s winner, Steve Guerdat but, in the end, they were left to dream at what might have been as Brash dominated once again.
Alban Poudret, the Sport Director at CHI Geneva, said, “It is a great gift, when the public is here and when the public love it; that really is the best gift for all our efforts. Yesterday evening for the first indoor cross-country the public was incredible and during the Rolex Top 10 Final, and Rolex Grand Prix we thought that we were at a Championship. At CHI Geneva, we are emotional and passionate, and we do it with our heart for the passion of the sport, and for the friendship between all of us and we share this friendship with the riders.
“It is important to have a colourful show with different type of competitions, not something with too much format. There are too many shows that are the same and here we are happy when we see riders that understand that all the 700 volunteers pay such attention to detail to make such a great sporting feast.”
The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping now takes a break until May 2015, when the Rolex Grand Prix will be staged during the weekend of 30-31 May at Aachen.
Official Quotes and Audio
To download transcribed quotes and audio interviews with the Top Three riders, please click here: http://po.st/93HYOY.
Rolex Equestrian Films
To celebrate the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, Rolex has created a number of films featuring its equestrian Testimonees. To view these films, please click here.
Geneva, Switzerland, 12 December 2014 – It is an elite competition for the best of the best and an opportunity for the Top 10 riders and horses in the world to compete for end-of-year supremacy. And after two rounds of intense competition, it was the rider who has dominated the World Rankings throughout 2014, Great Britain’s Scott Brash, who produced two flawless displays of Show Jumping to win the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final, stamp his dominance on the sport, and stake a claim to being the rider of the year.
Riding his great gelding Hello Sanctos, Brash was one of four riders who went into the second round faultless. As the round progressed, the poles dropped, and Brash was the only double clear as the final rider, Penelope Leprevost, riding Flora de Mariposa, came into the ring. The only female rider to be competing in the Rolex Top 10 Final, the noise from the crowd hushed to a respectful silence, as they willed the Frenchwoman to another clear round.
But top level Show Jumping can be a tough sport, and after trying to cut time off the tightest turn on the course, Leprevost brought down the wall, resulting in four faults. The combination then knocked down a further two poles dropping them from first to last place.
Scott Brash said, “I must say my horse jumped wonderful today; he jumped really, really good and to be standing here, the winner of the Top 10 – it’s a class I’ve always only ever dreamed of winning, as a kid growing up. I always thought it was impossible to be in there, but to come here, in Geneva of all places, and win – it’s wonderful and I’m delighted.”
In a further twist of fate following a similar result during the World Equestrian Games earlier in the year, a single time fault in the first round for the French rider Patrice Delaveau, meant his clear in the second round resulted in being the runner-up once again by less than two seconds. Rolex Testimonee Steve Guerdat’s horse Albfuehren’s Paille lost a shoe just before entering the ring before the second round and after a quick visit to the farrier, Guerdat was able to finish with just four faults, and claim his spot on the podium in third place.
Speaking about his second place, Delaveau said, “Yes, it was the same fault for me [as at the World Equestrian Games] so for the future I will focus my training on this type of fault. It was difficult for me tonight with the speed. Scott was very quick, but for me it’s OK; I was very happy.”
Similar to the ATP World Finals in tennis, which is also supported by Rolex, the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final is the only competition that is run by the competitors through the International Jumping Riders Club and, due to its very nature, is one of the toughest in the world to win. Staged during CHI Geneva for the tenth time since the competition started in 2001, at the riders’ request, the competition will now stay at the venue for the next few years.
The results of the 14th Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final:
1st Scott Brash (GBR), riding Hello Sanctos
2nd Patrice Delaveau (FRA), riding Lacrimoso HDC
3rd Steve Guerdat (SUI), riding Albfuehren’s Paille
4th Daniel Deusser (GER), riding Cornet D’Amour
5th Maikel Van Der Vleuten (NED), riding VDL Groep Verdi TN N.O.P.
6th Ludger Beerbaum (GER), riding Chaman
7th Kevin Staut (FRA), riding Estoy Aqui De Muze HDC
8th Marcus Ehning (GER), riding Cornado NRW
9th Kent Farrington (USA), riding Voyeur
10th Penelope Leprevost (FRA), riding Flora De Mariposa
8 December 2014 – An exceptional line-up of equestrian athletes are set to compete at this year’s Olympia, The London International Horse Show which takes place on 16-22 December, including the three FEI World No. 1s in Dressage, Show Jumping and Carriage Driving.
The definite entries, which were published today, reveal Dressage supremo Charlotte Dujardin, Show Jumping sensation Scott Brash, and Australian Driving legend Boyd Exell will head the incredible quality of competitors during the week-long event. In addition, seven out of the Top 10 Longines FEI World Ranked Show Jumpers will also compete at London’s premier horse show.
This year, organisers have seen the fastest ever sale of tickets, with 11 out of the 12 performances sold out before the doors even open on Tuesday 16 December.
Show Director Simon Brooks-Ward said: “As well as maintaining the Olympia tradition of staging family entertainment in the build-up to Christmas, our challenge has always been to put on world class sport, and the fact that we now stage three FEI World Cups™ clearly shows how far Olympia has developed over the years. When you add three World No. 1 competitors to this mix – Charlotte Dujardin, Scott Brash and Boyd Exell – it provides a compelling proposition.”
Charlotte Dujardin will compete Valegro in front of a UK audience for the first time this year in the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Leg supported by Horse & Hound which takes place on the first and second day of Olympia. Dujardin has had a momentous year since smashing the world record in freestyle at last year’s Olympia, by adding the FEI World Cup™ Finals and the World Championship titles to her already impressive collection of achievements. She was recently announced on the shortlist for BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
Joining Dujardin at Olympia will be her mentor and GBR team mate Carl Hester who will be riding 10-year-old gelding, Nip Tuck on whom he won Team Silver at the World Equestrian Games. Completing the British line-up are Spencer Wilton, making his Olympia debut with his exciting new ride Numberto, Nikki Crisp with her own mare Pasoa and Hannah Biggs with stallion Weltzin.
Dutch riders Edward Gal and Danielle Heijkoop, who were placed second and third respectively behind Dujardin last year, are confirmed to compete again this year with the same horses, Glock’s Undercover and Kingsley Siro N.O.P.
There are several exciting riders making their Olympia debuts this year. These include Germany’s Jessica von Bredow-Werndl, who was star of Junior and Young riders and twice German Champion. The 28-year-old broke into the highest senior level competition with the stallion who she rides at Olympia, Unee BB. The pair was seventh in the FEI World Cup Final in April and they have since won their last three competitions. Fellow German, Sonke Rothenberger, is also confirmed to compete at Olympia for the first time. The 20-year-old business student won Team Gold at the European Young Riders and was seventh in his World Cup debut in Odense this year. Completing the German line-up is Dorothee Schneider, who was part of the German team to take Team Silver at London 2012. Schneider makes her Olympia debut on Silvano 71. Spain’s Morgan Barbanςon Mestre, aged 22, will make his first Olympia appearance with Anky van Grunsven’s former ride, Painted Black. The pair was placed 10th at the FEI World Cup Finals and 15th at the World Equestrian Games this year.
Seven of the Top 10 riders in the Longines FEI World Rankings are among the definite entries for the five-star Show Jumping at Olympia, including World No.1, Scott Brash.
The Scotsman, who has now held the top spot for over twelve months, will be joined by some of the biggest international names in the sport, including an incredibly strong team of German riders. This includes Ludger Beerbaum, Daniel Deusser and Marcus Ehning, who are three, four and five in the world rankings respectively. Three times FEI World Cup Final winner, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, also competes for Germany.
Dutch riders, Maikel van der Vleuten and Jur Vrieling, who were part of the team who won Team Gold at the World Equestrian Games this year, are both on the confirmed list. Regular Olympia visitor, Pénélope Leprevost (FRA), is on the list and is joined by her French teammates, Kevin Staut and Patrice Delaveau, who won Team Silver at the World Championships. New kid on the block 19-year-old Bertram Allen (IRL) will compete with the mare that propelled him into the limelight at the World Equestrian Games this year, Molly Malone V.
It would not be Olympia without the Whitaker dynasty competing en masse and this year Michael, John, Robert and William are all confirmed to ride with a team of top horses. The youngest, William, is currently in remarkable form, having won the fifth leg of the Longines FEI World Cup series in Stuttgart in November. The UK’s No.1 female rider Laura Renwick returns to defend her H&M Leading Rider title which she scooped in 2013 and last year’s Olympia Grand Prix winner Ben Maher brings a strong team of horses, including Puissance specialist, Noctambule Courcelle. Tim Gredley, Spencer Roe, and Guy Williams complete the British line-up.
Last year’s Olympia Christmas Puissance winner, Luca Moneta (ITA), will return to the capital to defend his crown, but will face strong competition from Puissance specialists, Jean-Christophe De Grande and Karline De Brabander, both from Belgium, and Irish riders David Simpson and Liam O’Meara. British rider Joe Clayton, who shared the Puissance victory at the Horse of the Year Show in October with David Simpson, also lines up for the nail-biting high jump competition.
Show Jumping takes place during every performance from Thursday 18 December to Monday 22 December. Highlights include the Alltech Olympia Puissance on Thursday 18 December, the Longines FEI World Cup™ Leg on Sunday 21 December, and the Olympia Grand Prix on Monday 22 December.
Current World Champion, Boyd Exell (AUS), and last year’s Olympia winner, IJsbrand Chardon (NED), head the quality line-up for the FEI World Cup™ Driving Leg presented by Dodson & Horrell.
A total of seven of the world’s leading four-in-hand drivers will attempt to manoeuver their horses in the fastest time round the twists and turns of the Olympia arena on Thursday 18 and Friday 19 December, with the Final taking place on Saturday 20 December.
Triumphant from winning the gold medal at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy in August, in-form Boyd Exell will be bringing his usual masterly rein-handling skills and split-second timing which always thrills the Olympia crowd. Last year’s Olympia winner, IJsbrand Chardon, himself many times World Champion, will no doubt be looking to defend his title, but Chardon will face strong competition also from his fellow countrymen Theo Timmerman and Koos de Ronde. Together these three took the Team Gold medal at this year’s WEG with Timmerman claiming Individual Bronze.
Representing Great Britain as a wild card is Daniel Naprous, who previously competed at Olympia in 2012. Naprous, who combines his sport of carriage driving with a successful career in stunt riding and driving, will have the support of the home crowd as the only Brit competing in the competition. Completing the competitive line-up are Fredrik Persson (SWE) and Glenn Geerts (BEL), both highly accomplished and successful four-in-hand drivers.
For more information and to purchase tickets online, visit the website at www.olympiahorseshow.com or telephone the box office on 0871 230 5580.
Olympia will broadcast live on BBC2 on Sunday 21 December and available to view on Eurosport, the BBC Red Button, online and connected TV on Wednesday 17, Thursday 18 and Monday 22 December. In addition a special highlights program will be aired on BBC2 on Tuesday 23 December at 13:45.
Olympia, The London International Horse Show The first international horse show took place in the Olympia halls in 1907. Olympia, The London International Horse Show, the event we see today, was started by Raymond Brooks-Ward in 1971. This year’s show takes place on 16-22 December 2014 in the Olympia Exhibition Hall, located in West Kensington London. The show will play host to a packed timetable of all things equestrian and is expected to welcome over 90,000 visitors. It is regarded as one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious equine competitions. The show mixes top class equestrian action, including FEI World Cup™ Jumping, Dressage and Driving with family entertainment, such as the Osborne Refrigerators Shetland Pony Grand National which raises money for Great Ormond Street Hospital and The Kennel Club Dog Agility. The show’s official charity for 2014 is The Injured Jockeys Fund.
Lausanne (SUI), 6 May 2014 – British riders have broken all-time records, occupying the world number one slots in all three Olympic equestrian disciplines. This is the first time that athletes from one nation have simultaneously topped the FEI World Rankings in Jumping, Dressage, and Eventing.
In the latest rankings published by the FEI, Scott Brash heads the Longines Rankings in Jumping, Charlotte Dujardin heads the FEI World Individual Dressage Rankings, and William Fox-Pitt tops the FEI World Eventing Athlete Rankings.
“To be the first country whose athletes have simultaneously been world number one in the three Olympic disciplines since the FEI Rankings began in 2002 is a truly outstanding achievement,” FEI Secretary General Ingmar De Vos said.
“Congratulations to Scott Brash, Charlotte Dujardin, and William Fox-Pitt for their remarkable performances, and also to their trainers, owners, grooms, support crews, veterinarians, the British Equestrian Federation, and the British Olympic Association. And of course, I would like to pay a very special tribute to the talented horses that are an integral part of the success story in British equestrian sport.”
Scott Brash, the youngest member of Britain’s London 2012 Olympic Games gold medal team, jumped into the world number one spot in the Longines Rankings in December 2013 and has held the position ever since. With 3,266 points, the 28-year-old from Peebles in Scotland is ahead of fellow countryman Ben Maher (2,830 points), and Germany’s Ludger Beerbaum (2,799). Beerbaum and Brash claimed second and third places behind Daniel Deusser (GER) in last month’s Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final in Lyon (FRA).
Charlotte Dujardin (28) and the 12-year-old bay gelding Valegro became the first British partnership to head the FEI World Dressage Rankings in September 2012 following their double Olympic gold at the London Olympic Games. The combination reclaimed world number one status last September and has now been in pole position since the beginning of the year. Dujardin and Valegro, winners of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final in Lyon, are also the FEI Grand Prix, Grand Prix Special, and Grand Prix Freestyle record holders.
Dujardin and Valegro lead the FEI Dressage Rankings with 3,138 points ahead of Germany’s Helen Langehanenberg and Damon Hill NRW (2,917 points), and Edward Gal (NED) and Glock’s Undercover (2,702 points).
William Fox-Pitt, multiple Olympic, World and European medallist, and the first British rider to top the FEI World Eventing Rankings in 2002, took over as world number one at the beginning of the month. Triple Olympic team medallist Fox-Pitt (44), who this week bids for a Badminton victory to add to last month’s win in Kentucky, has a 16-point advantage over Andrew Nicholson (NZL), with Bruce O. Davidson Jr. (USA) third in the world rankings.
“This is another historic first for equestrian sport in Great Britain and is wonderful proof of the skill of our riders, the dedication of the owners and staff, as well as the support provided by the Lottery-funded World Class Programme,” British World Class Performance Manager Will Connell said.
“Of course ranking lists are a record of what has already happened, but now all of us are focused on the competitions ahead and especially on the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2014 in Normandy.”