After Philippe Guerdat announced his shortlist for the European team at the first round of the Riders Masters Cup against the United States, Robert Ridland’s reply was not slow in coming. Faced with serious opposition, the American coach has made some bold choices. The revolution is about to occur in the world of equestrian sports with this brand-new team competition presented by EEM in collaboration with the EEF and with Longines as the Founding Partner: the Riders Masters Cup. On Saturday December 2nd 2017 the two powerhouses of world show jumping, the United States and Europe, will came face to face in the ring of the Longines Masters of Paris during two unique duels.
The Riders Masters Cup is a competition between two teams consisting of the best riders and horses from each of the two geographical zones. The two rounds are designed by Louis Konickx, the course designer of the last European Championships. The event aims to raise the profile of equestrian sport by inviting the general public to share its intrinsic values, namely, excellence, prestige and sharing. The event will combine performance, showmanship and strategy in the form of ten duels fought between five American riders and five European riders. For this first event, two men with much experience in the matter will be responsible for putting the teams together: Robert Ridland for the United States and Philippe Guerdat for Europe.
Lauren Hough & Cornet 39
The European team was unveiled a few days ago but the American chef d’équipe has been keeping his opponents in suspense. Robert Ridland has revealed his shortlist of riders who will represent the United States at this historic first edition of the Riders Masters Cup. Faced with the best riders in Europe, the United States has left nothing to chance with the current World number one, Kent Farrington, and the highest ranked women’s rider in the world and team gold medalist at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Laura Kraut (World no. 27). Robert Ridland has also invited Lauren Hough (World no. 38), silver medal winner at the Nations Cup final in Barcelona, to travel to Paris along with McLain Ward (World no. 2), winner of the World Cup Final in 2017. Andrew Kocher (World no. 121), Devin Ryan (World no. 91) and Quentin Judge (World no. 205), three riders who frequently put in great performances at international competitions stateside, will also have the honor of competing against the top European riders.
The event organizer and the chef d’équipes are keen to promote young talent, so several riders under 25 appear on the list alongside the better-known riders, including Chloe Reid (World no. 109) and Reed Kessler (World no. 117) who are both on the United States shortlist.
With this equally awesome American team, it promises to be a tremendous battle between the two teams on Saturday evening in the Longines Masters of Paris ring. Expect some incredible sporting moments that will go down in the history of equestrian sports. This first edition of the Riders Masters Cup is not to be missed under any circumstances. The final outcome will be revealed after the second meet, which will be the return leg in New York on April 28th 2018.
For all the fans who are impatient to enjoy this incredible experience, social networks are a prime showcase to follow all the news about the Riders Cup. Thanks to the hashtag #WaveYourFlag, you can support your favorite team on the social networks, and thus join the Riders Masters Cup community for a unique social challenge! The public will also fully play its role in the grandstands, where each team will need its full support. National pride, team spirit, live strategy and audience participation are the watchwords of this new competition.
Source: Press Release by Diane Prouhet for Agence R B Presse
Photos: © Agence RB Presse / J. Rodrigues