World Cup Jumps Into Action!
in Finland plays host to the opening leg of the Western European
League 2003/2004 FEI World Cup Jumping season on Sunday 19 October.
series, first staged in 1978, will be celebrating its 26th year
but without the guiding hand of long-time Director, Max Ammann,
who stepped aside after producing the latest World Cup Media Guide
which will be in circulation within the next few weeks.
its going to be an historic new beginning this season, although
Maxs tremendous legacy lives on.
the first time ever the final will be staged in Italy when Milans
Fila-Forum opens its doors from 21 to 25 April 2004 but,
before that, there will be 14 tough qualifying rounds at the following
- 19 October
- 26 October
- 9 November
- 16 November
- 7 December
London - 21 December
- 30 December
- 25 January
- 1 February
- 7 February
- 14 February
- 6 March
- 28 March
- 11 April.
riders have dominated the series for the last two years, Otto
Becker taking the coveted title with Dobels Cento at Leipzig
in 2002 and Markus Ehning following in his footsteps in Las Vegas
earlier this year when he came out on top with Anka, but the most
spectacular performances over the entire history of the series
have been produced by Brazils Rodrigo Pessoa and Baloubet
horse-and-rider combination secured three consecutive victories
in 1998, 1999 and 2000 and continued to stay in contention over
the last three years when finishing second in Gothenburg in 2001,
third in Leipzig in 2002 and runners-up again in Las Vegas in
April 2003 a remarkable record from a truly remarkable
Hugo Simon is also a three-time World Cup winner but there was
a 17-year gap between his success with Gladstone at the very first
final in Gothenburg in 1979 and the double he scored with ET in
1996 and 1997. His two horses are just some of the super-stars
which have emerged from the series who can forget names
like Jet Run, The Natural, Big Ben, Milton and Ratina, each with
their own star quality and unique style of jumping.
Cup jumping may be tough but there is a certain longevity about
many of the horses and riders who have featured in the series
since its inception.
Abdullah for instance. This great grey stallion which scooped
the title for Americas Conrad Holmfeld in Berlin in 1985
was born in 1971 and only found his way to Horse Heaven in 2000
his 29-year life-span an indication of the hardiness of
well-cared-for equine athletes.
riders have become real World Cup specialists with Hugo Simon,
Germanys Franke Sloothaak and Britains Michael Whitaker
all qualifying for the final on 15 occasions but it is Michaels
brother, John Whitaker, who holds the record with a total of 21
final appearances two of which were winning ones.
Helsinki next week Johns son Robert will be flying the flag
along with promising new British team member Richard Davenport
and seasoned campaigner Robert Smith whose father, Harvey, was
the first rider to be awarded the Silver Medal for 100 World Cup
competition appearances back in 1989. Germany fields a big squad
including Franke Sloothaak, Soren von Ronne and Toni Hassman who
is going for a hat-trick of consecutive wins in the Hartwall Arena.
Champion, Hollands Jeroen Dubbeldam, has entered his championship
ride De Sjiem and if the horse is fit it will be his first international
appearance for almost a year. The French are in flying form after
their Samsung Super League success and should present a strong
challenge in the shape of Michel Hecart, Bruno Broucqsault and
Olivier Guillon while Ireland will be represented by Lt David
OBrien who recently finished second in the national Kerrygold
Grand Prix League series.
two other riders will also be on a mission. Luck has not been
favouring Ludo Philippaerts of late so the Belgian rider will
be hoping to get his indoor jumping season off to a better start
while Swedens Malin Baryard, who recently entered the elite
top-10 group in the Rider Rankings, brings Butterfly Flip in an
effort to pick up those valuable early World Cup points. Malin
finished third in Las Vegas as the 2002/2003 World Cup season
drew to a close. She has been consistently well-placed at major
championships and tournaments in recent years and it seems like
only a matter of time before she clinches individual glory for
is a long trip however from Helsinki to Milan and there is a lot
of jumping to be done along the way
WEBSITE for the first leg of the 2003/2004 FEI World Cup Jumping
series which takes place in Helsinki, Finland on Sunday 19 October
2003 is www.helsinkihorseshow.fi. Contact PRESS OFFICER Kati Hurme-Leikkonen
at Mobile ++358 40 514 47 53 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
second leg will be staged in Oslo, Norway on Sunday 26 October
2003. Website: www.oslohorseshow.com. Press Officer Ingjerd Eriksen,
Siri Klevaas Mobile ++ 47 951 687 97. Email: email@example.com.
third leg is at Verona, Italy on Sunday 9 November 2003. Website:
www.fieracavalli.com. Press Officer is Caterina Vagnozzi
Tel: ++39 06 321 8857, Fax: ++ 39 06 361 0419. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
on riders competing in the FEI World Cup Jumping series are available
CAN DOWNLOAD THE NEWLY REVISED RULES for the World Cup for Jumping
Riders from FEI website: www.horsesport.org from the end of next
World Cup Jumping has entered its 26th year. The series, created
in 1978, today comprises 12 leagues on all continents. The best
riders from over 100 World Cup preliminary competition will qualify
for the Final which will be held in Milan (ITA) from 21 to 25
April 2004. The title-holder is Markus Ehning (GER) with Anka.
EQUESTRE INTERNATIONALE (FEI)
Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI), founded in 1921, is
the international body governing equestrian sport recognised by
the International Olympic Committee (IOC). It is based on the
principle of equality and mutual respect between all 130 affiliated
National Federations, without prejudice to race, religion or internal
sport has been on the Olympic programme since 1912 with three
disciplines Jumping, Dressage and Eventing. It is one of
the very few sports where men and women compete on equal terms.
It is also the only sport which involves two athletes - horse
and rider - and the relationship and mutual respect built up between
them is the key to a successful partnership.
FEI has relentlessly concerned itself with the welfare of the
horse. According to the First Article of the Code of Conduct,
ratified in 1991 and applying to all those involved in the well-being
of horses, "in all equestrian sports the welfare of the horse
must be considered paramount".