Grimaud, France – July 08, 2020 – After a 5* weekend with an exceptional line-up, the Haras des Grillons de Grimaud will play host to a final weekend of 4* showjumping from Thursday to Sunday. One less star than last week, admittedly, but with just as many champions on the billing!
Last weekend marked the return of the highest level of international competition since March, as the only CSI 5* in the world was held in Grimaud. The public was also authorised to come and cheer on the riders and horses around the ring, to everyone’s delight. This week, the tour in Grimaud is coming to an end with a CSI 4*. But equestrian sports fans should rest assured! The world’s best riders will be in the ring again this week.
Twenty of the World’s Top 30 Riders
Although this week the Hubside Jumping will have one star less, it will nevertheless boast two thirds of the current World Top 30. The World No. 1 and winner of last Sunday’s 5* Grand Prix, Steve Guerdat (SUI) will be present once again, just like Germany’s Daniel Deusser (#3) and Great Britain’s Scott Brash (#9). The Belgian riders Niels Bruynseels (#17), Pieter Devos (#4), Olivier Philippaerts (#30) and Jos Verlooy (#19) are also expected. After two great wins in a row in the first two 4* Grands Prix of these last weeks, the Netherlands’ Maikel van der Vleuten (NED) is making way for his fellow countrymen Harry Smolders (#18) and Marc Houtzager (#26). Brazil’s Marlon Modolo Zanotelli (#19) and Austria’s Max Kühner (#25) are staying in the South of France for another week of competition. As for the French riders, the public will be able to watch their champions Simon Delestre (#28), Julien Epaillard (#14), Pénélope Leprévost (#23) and Kevin Staut (#22). Germany’s Christian Ahlmann (#13) and Marcus Ehning (#16) have taken up residence in Grimaud and will be accompanying the German leader for another week.
If you add Ireland’s Denis Lynch (#29), Italy’s Emanuele Gaudiano (#23) and Sweden’s Henrik von Eckermann (#15) to that, then you have at least twenty of the thirty best riders in the world: an exceptional line-up for a CSI 4*.
Even Greater Competition
Despite this, the Top 30 champions will be facing competition from the other riders participating. Indeed, many champions will be battling it out in Grimaud this weekend. Among them, the riders who have already been at the show for several weeks such as the Olympic team gold medallists Roger-Yves Bost (FRA) and Philippe Rozier (FRA), the current European team gold medallist, Belgium’s Jérôme Guéry (BEL) and America’s Laura Kraut (USA), the 2008 Olympic team gold medallist. Young riders will definitely have a say in what will happen this weekend. All hopes are permitted for France’s Edward Levy, 2nd in Sunday’s 5* Grand Prix and for Ludger Beerbaum’s student Christian Kukuk (GER), who also won a 1.50m class last week. France’s Alexandra Paillot (FRA) will be competing for the first time in Grimaud and will be keen to shine in this immense ring, as will the other new French riders, Jérôme Hurel (FRA), Laurent Goffinet (FRA) and Gregory Cottard (FRA). One thing is sure, there will be lots more great sport to come in Grimaud! We look forward to seeing you from Thursday to Sunday for the last four days of the French Riviera tour. The French course designer Cédric Longis will be in charge of the track of the courses for this fourth week of competition. Three levels of competition will be on offer (CSI 1*, 2* and 4*), boasting prize money totalling €287,000 of which €100,000 euros will be for Sunday’s CSI 4* Grand Prix.
Source: Press release from Daniel Koroloff for Hubside Jumping
Photos: © Hubside Jumping / Marco Villanti / Ljuba Buzzola