LGCT Championship Race Heats Up as All Top Ten Contenders Head to Rome

Rome, Italy – September 12, 2023 – As the 2023 Longines Global Champions Tour moves into its final stages, competition is as fierce as ever with riders battling it out to fight for their ranking in the Longines Global Champions Tour series, as well as secure their position in the formidable Longines Global Champions Tour Super Grand Prix in Prague, Czech Republic, this November.

With ten out of ten of the LGCT Championship contenders ready for battle in Rome the 14th stage of the epic season is set to light up the Circus Maximums from 15 – 17 September. The equestrian world is poised for an electrifying showdown as the Longines Global Champions Tour returns to the heart of Rome. The Circus Maximus, an iconic historic venue, will set the stage for an unforgettable display of world-class show jumping. With free entrance for the public – it will be a weekend not to miss this summer!

Leading the pack as Championship leader, Harrie Smolders (NED) on 252 points is set to dazzle spectators with the unmatched skill and consistency of Monaco N.O.P.. But hot on their heels Maikel van der Vleuten (NED) is a force to be reckoned with as he looks for his first ever LGCT Championship win. Riding his one and only LGCT Grand Prix of Cannes winner Beauville Z N.O.P the pair have made a name for themselves on the global stage this year with 238 points heading into Rome.

With a proven track record of being one of the fastest man on the circuit, Simon Delestre (FRA) enters Rome in third place on 217 points. Last year’s LGCT Grand Prix of Rome winner Christian Kukuk (GER) will be aiming to secure back-to-back wins as well as crucial Championship points as he sits on 210 points just ahead of world number one Henrik von Eckermann with 208.50 points.

Having the season of his life with two LGCT Grand Prix wins already including the 1.5 million euro LGCT Grand Prix of Monaco, Julien Epaillard (FRA) is primed to captivate to audience and get another victory under his belt. On the exact same points (192) as Julien, Edwina Tops-Alexander (AUS) is looking to match Ben Maher’s (GBR) record of 3 LGCT Championship wins so a podium in Rome is within touching distance.

Max Kuhner (AUT), who has189 points, Pieter Devos (BEL)) with 186 points and Andreas Schou (DEN), with 167.50 points round off the top ten present in Rome but they will have the likes of Ben Maher, Jérôme Guéry, Daniel Deusser, Christian Ahlmann (GER), Laura Kraut (USA), Marlon Zanotelli (BRA), Gregory Wathelet (BEL), Marcus Ehning (GER), Niels Bruynseels (BEL), Scott Brash (GBR), Peder Fredricson (SWE) and Malin Baryard-Johnsson (SWE) to battle it out with.

Local fans will be able to witness superstars like Lorenzo de Luca (ITA), Piergiorgio Bucci (ITA), Emanuele Gaudiano (ITA), Emanuele Camilli (ITA), Francesco Turturiello (ITA) and Giacomo Casadei (ITA). Spectators can expect three days of exhilarating competition, as these extraordinary riders and their magnificent equine partners vie for top honors at Circus Maximus. The Longines Global Champions Tour of Rome promises not only sporting excellence but also a celebration of the timeless bond between horse and rider, all against the breathtaking backdrop of one of history’s most iconic venues.

One of the most visited cities in the world, Rome is the ultimate destination for spectating of world-class sports, sampling of the finest local fare and viewing of some of the world’s most recognisable cultural landmarks and artworks. Don’t miss the chance to witness equestrian greatness at its finest as Rome welcomes the world’s top riders from September 15th to 17th, 2023. Free tickets are available via the website.

Source: Press Release from LGCT – Longines Global Champions Tour

Photo: © LGCT