Philipp Weishaupt rode to victory in the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup on a borrowed horse

Philipp sat on the just seven-year-old Hatrona for…

Philipp sat on the just seven-year-old Hatrona for the first time last Sunday. Today, the pair won the second qualifier for the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup. A victory for which the horse had earned the applause much more than himself, said Weishaupt afterwards.


It is unusual for a seven-year-old horse to leave his eight-year-old colleagues trailing behind him in a youngster class. It is even more unusual when the horse and rider haven’t even known each other for a week. But that was precisely the case with Philipp Weishaupt and the KWPN mare Hatrona by Eldorado van de Zeshoek. Weishaupt was qualified to compete in Aachen, but he didn’t have a horse for the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup. Then, he met up with his friend, Holger Wenz, last Saturday, who said: “I have got a super horse for you, one for the Youngsters Tour in Aachen!” Weißhaupt wasted no time, the very next day he had already saddled Hatrona. Two days later the two of them galloped into the expansive stadium of the Soers and left it on a score of four faults. The result of his second ride today: The victory after having crossed the finish line clear in the fastest time. Philipp Weishaupt: “I didn’t contribute that much to this win! Hatrona is a super horse – careful, scopey, fast and easy to ride. All the right ingredients!” The mare now has the chance to prove this once again on Saturday in the Final of the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup.


Hatrona wasn’t the only seven-year-old in the class, who outperformed her older colleagues. Second place also went to the KWPN-bred H.Big Action by Action Breaker, who was born in 2012 too. He was ridden by the Brazilian rider, Eduardo Menezes.


Gerrit Nieberg from Germany and the Westphalian-bred Ben by Sylvain claimed third place. Since the pair also finished fourth on Tuesday, the duo from Münsterland are the most successful pair in the Sparkassen-Youngsters Cup 2019 so far.


In total, eight German pairs will be competing in the Final of the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup on Saturday evening, in addition to Nieberg with Ben and Weishaupt with Hatrona they are Patrick Stühlmeyer with For Laubry, Marcus Ehning with Priam du Roset, Christian Kukuk with Mumbai, Maurice Tebbel with Can Ya Mecan, Christian Ahlmann with Mandato ven de Neerheide and Felix Haßmann with the horse that won silver at the World Championships of the Young Horses in 2017, Quiwitino WZ.

Tim-Uwe Hoffmann wins the opening qualifier for the German U25 Trophy

The CHIO Aachen has been the venue for…

The CHIO Aachen has been the venue for the Final of the German U25 Trophy of the Stiftung Deutscher Spitzenpferdesport, Prize of Family Müter, since 2015. Tim-Uwe Hoffmann succeeded in qualifying for the final for the third time today. But it was the first time he headed the lap of honour at the Soers.


As the last to go in the opening jumping competition of the German U25 Trophy Stiftung of the Stiftung Deutscher Spitzenpferdesport, Prize of Family Müter, Tim-Uwe Hoffmann was able to assert himself against his fellow competitors with his self-trained Hanoverian-bred mare, Casta Lee.

Until the last but one pair entered the ring, the silver medallist of the Ladies German Championships was in the lead, Sophie Hinners with Vittorio. Then, came Jan André Schulze with his ten-year-old Oldenburg-bred Fitch. The 24-year-old from Warendorf and his Flipper d’Elle son already arrived in Aachen in top form, they namely finished sixth in both the Grand Prix at the Nations Cup show in Uggerhalne (DEN) as well as in the Grand Prix in Mons Ghlin (BEL). They paced around the course at the Soers with the corresponding self-confidence and stripped one second off Sophie Hinners and Vittorio’s time. The clock stopped at 68.95 seconds for Schulze Niehues. Sophie Hinners and Vittorio had taken 70 seconds. Now it was Schulze Niehues’ turn to bite his nails. He won the qualifier in Hagen. Tim-Uwe Hoffmann finished first in Mannheim.

“Yes, one is definitely more nervous here than at other shows. And you can’t compare riding into the Soers with anything else,” admitted Hoffmann. “But it is not like I let it really get to me.” On the contrary, Hoffmann had a plan that he stuck to. At the last fence, fortune was on the side of the brave, when Casta Lee lightly brushed the pole, but luckily it didn’t fall: Tim-Uwe Hoffmann and Casta Lee jumped to victory clear in a time of 65.68 seconds, ahead of Jan André Schulze Niehues with Fitch and Sophie Hinners with Vittorio.

In 2017, Tim-Uwe Hoffmann came 21st. He finished eighth in the Final in 2018. We’ll have to wait how he ranks on Saturday. The Final of the German U25 Trophy of the Stiftung Deutscher Spitzenpferdesport, Prize of Family Müter, begins at 1.15 p.m.

Victory for Sönke Rothenberger in HAVENS Horsefeed-Prize

Olympic gold medallist, World and European Champion, last…

Olympic gold medallist, World and European Champion, last year’s winner Emilio with Isabell Werth and many other big names had a rendezvous for the HAVENS Horsefeed-Prize, the Grand Prix of the CDI4* Tour. In the end, Sönke Rothenberger and his superstar, Cosmo, secured themselves the victory with a clear lead.


Sönke Rothenberger and Cosmo won the HAVENS Horsefeed-Prize with a score of 81.370 percent. That is the second-best Grand Prix result the team Olympic gold medallist of the year 2016 has ever been awarded in a Grand Prix – and that although Rothenberger didn’t even risk all. They have only beaten this score once before, namely at the World Equestrian Games in Tryon in 2018, where they won gold with the team. This year Aachen is only the pair’s second show. The last competition prior to Aachen, the German Championships in Balve in mid-June, came to an end for the pair before it had even begun, since shortly after arriving at the showgrounds, the twelve-year-old KWPN gelding came down with colic and had to be taken to the clinic. Today, he seemed as fit as a fiddle in the Deutsche Bank Stadium, scored several 9s and was also awarded the odd 10 by the judges.


Second place went to Isabell Werth and Emilio, the pair that won the Deutsche Bank Prize last year. They scored under the 80-percent mark today, 79.450 to be precise. Third place went to Denmark’s, Cathrine Dufour with the meanwhile 16-year-old Cassidy, her long-standing successful partner, whom she already won infinite medals with during her days riding for the Juniors and Young Riders. She also competed at an Olympic Games for the first time with him in 2016 in Rio as well as picking up bronze in the individual classification at the European Championships in Gothenburg in 2017.

New horse, new luck for Philipp Weishaupt in the Prize of StädteRegion Aachen

Philipp Weishaupt has only been riding the nine-year-old…

Philipp Weishaupt has only been riding the nine-year-old Coby for six weeks. Today, in the Prize of StädteRegion Aachen in memory of Landrat Hermann-Josef Pütz, the gelding once again showed his rider that he destined for greater tasks.


This is to be taken quite literally. Since Philipp Weishaupt had namely thought, Coby would be a great horse for speed competitions. “But now I keep getting the feeling that he could also jump in the top classes!” The nine-year-old Hanoverian-bred gelding already won two classes at his first competitions in Calgary. And now the first appearance at the Soers and a victory straight away in the 1.5-metre-high two-phase jumping competition, the Prize of StädteRegion Aadchen in memory of Landrat Hermann-Josef Pütz. Weishaupt: “I am sure we are going to have a lot of fun with him!”

With a clear round in 32.50 seconds, Philipp Weishaupt and his Contagio son, relegated Luciana Diniz (POR) and the new star in her yard, the Selle Français gelding, Vertigo du Desert by Mylord Carthago, into second place (33.44). This is a pretty new horse/rider combination too. Diniz has been riding the grey gelding since March. An acquaintance rang her and had seen “the next Fit For Fun” for her. Fit For Fun is the horse with which Diniz came second with in the Grand Prix of Aachen, in both 2017 and 2018. So, it is no surprise that Diniz was buzzing. It turns out that her acquaintance certainly hadn’t promised too much: “It was love at first sight,” said the rider, who originates from Brazil and whose stables are located near Bonn. The pair have already won several rosettes and put in a promising opening performance at the World Equestrian Festival today.

The Swiss rider, Martin Fuchs was delighted at finishing third with the Zangersheide-bred mare, Chica BZ (34.54), followed by Felix Haßmann on Balance (35.47) and Daniel Deußer with Killer Queen VDM, who won the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup last year.

Boyd Exell sets a world record in the Prize of Firma Horsch, Der Entsorger

The Australian driver, who lives in the Netherlands,…

The Australian driver, who lives in the Netherlands, Boyd Exell, won the Prize of Firma Horsch, Der Entsorger, the first dressage class of the four-in-hand drivers with a record result.


Boyd Exell has already won the four-in-hand driving competition at the CHIO Aachen eight times. Last year he had to bow down to his arch-rival the Dutch driver, Ijsbrand Chardon, but one must add that he was handicapped after breaking his leg shortly beforehand. He is fit this year though. That was very evident today in the Prize of Firma Horsch, Der Entsorger. This competition traditionally kicks off the driving competition, but does not actually count towards the overall classification.

The judges awarded the reigning World Champion, 28.70 minus points for his performance – the best result that has ever been recorded! In order to make Exell’s success complete, one of his pupil’s drove into second place on a score of 39.39 minus points: Misdee Wrigley-Miller, from the USA, who won team gold at the World Championships in Tryon 2018. Anyone, who likes chewing gum, will no doubt be familiar with her surname. A team colleague of Misdee Wrigley-Miller, also a member of the gold-winning team from Tryon, came third on a score of 40.26 minus points: Chester Weber. Mareike Harm was the best German driver in eighth place (48.55).

Ben Maher’s flight to victory in the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe

If the sponsor of the competition, Turkish Airlines,…

If the sponsor of the competition, Turkish Airlines, should ever decide to implement a horse as an advertising medium, Ben Maher’s Explosion W would be the right candidate for the airline. That the pair demonstrated today over the course of the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe, can literally only be described as a flight to victory.


It was as if Ben Maher and his just ten-year-old, Chacco Blue son, Explosion W, floated over the extremely demanding course in the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe. Among others, the course designer, Frank Rothenberger, had placed the fences over water that are dreaded in Aachen in the way of the riders for the first time this year. No problem whatsoever for Explosion W. “But for me definitely,” the rider admitted remorsefully and explained: “I had actually planned to ride nine canter strides in between, but it turned out to be eight.” Explosion solved something that would have faced other horses with a huge problem in his own style: simply took off a bit more energetically. There wasn’t a second in the jump-off where the crowd held its breath either, because there was no chance of him brushing a pole. Explosion completed one fence after the other often and easily jumping 30 centimetres higher than the obstacles. The pair reached the finish line in a time of 46.28 seconds, clear of course. “He gives you the feeling that there is nothing he is not capable of achieving,” raved his rider. So, it didn’t surprise him at all that the gelding jumped to the top on his debut appearance at the Aachen Soers.

Maher had a good explanation for his miscalculation in the first round: “I took a fall in the competition before and got kicked on my head. That obviously restricted my ability to count somewhat,” he joked, but then assured everyone: “It looked worse than it was.” And after his victory he was obviously feeling much better… Maher’s bottom line of the day: “We now know what we can expect on Sunday in the Grand Prix!”


A difficult course – Maher’s colleagues were of the same opinion. Second place went to the Spanish rider, Eduardo Alvarez Aznar, with his top horse, the 14-year-old Selle Français gelding, Rokfeller de Pleville Bois Margot, who has already competed at the Soers twice before, so he is familiar with the dimensions of both the stadium and the obstacles. After achieving a fantastic eighth place in the World Cup Finals in Gothenburg, the l’Arc de Triomphe son had taken a well-earned few weeks break from competing. “Aachen is his fourth outdoor show,” reported Alvarez Aznar. “The aim was for him to be as fresh as possible here.” The strategy obviously paid off. The pair took the shortest routes to reach the finish line clear in 47.08 seconds.


The 27,000 spectators cheered loudly in the Main Stadium as Daniel Deußer and his Zangersheide-bred stallion, Tobago Z, finished clear and went into the lead after the clock stopped at 47.71 seconds. However, his joy didn’t last for long, because his two fellow competitors who started behind him in the jump-off were quicker off the mark. Daniel Deußer was nevertheless very happy at coming third. “Tobago Z has had a few months break and was at stud. I have been getting him back into form over the past weeks and Aachen is first highlight in the season.”

Deußer knows exactly where he lost the decisive seconds in the jump-off: I could have taken one less canter stride on the way to the last fence. But in retrospect it was probably better that I didn’t.” This was a reference to the fall of the rider from the USA, Laura Kraut, who was on course to win up until the last obstacle, but then didn’t find the right take-off to the oxer at all with the Verdi daughter, Fleurette, because she had opted for the shortest route. The result was that both horse and rider fell. Luckily, neither of them hurt themselves. Fleurette trotted towards the exit, Kraut left the ring on foot waving to the crowd and received a consoling applause.


Daniel Deußer’s summary of the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe 2019: “Yes, the course was difficult, but we still had eleven clear rounds and two pairs that only had time faults. So, the course designer achieved his aim!”

Charlotte Fry and the World Champion Glamourdale win the Prize of VUV-Vereinigte Unternehmerverbände Aachen

The British rider, Charlotte Fry clearly took the…

The British rider, Charlotte Fry clearly took the victory in the Prix St. Georges competition, the Prize of VUV-Vereinigte Unternehmerverbände Aachen in the Deutsche Bank Stadium with the just eight-year-old KWPN stallion, Glamourdale.


It was the 23-year-old British dressage rider, Charlotte Fry’s debut performance at the World Equestrian Festival in Aachen. Her premiere with the eight-year-old Glamourdale proved to be a total success. Placed first by all five judges with a total score of 77.971, she rode to victory in the Prix St. Georges, the Prize of the VUV-Vereinigte Unternehmerverbände Aachen, with ease. Second place went to the Dutch rider, Joyce Heuitink riding Gaudi Vita on a score of 72.471, followed by Hubertus Schmidt with Denoix PCH (70.588).


The victory was not totally unexpected as Charlotte Fry said: “I had hoped to win, because he is so incredible,” she beamed patting Glamourdale affectionately on the neck. What she felt like during her first appearance at the Soers? “The stadium is awesome, better than anything I have ever seen!”


Whereby Fry and her Lord Leatherdale son have already notched up plenty of great victories together. For instance, the British athlete, who lives in the Netherlands, claimed the World Championship title for the seven-year-old dressage horses with her black stallion last year in Ermelo. They are at home at the yard of van Olst, who also owns Glamourdale. Charlotte Fry learnt her dressage skills from the British master trainer, Carl Hester. 2018 was the most successful year in her career to-date. In addition to winning the world championship title in Ermelo, she also won gold in the freestyle competition at the U25 European Championships, albeit with Dark Legend, whom she has also brought to Aachen with her and whom she will be saddling tomorrow for the Nations Cup representing Great Britain.

The last ones shall be the first – Prize of Handwerk

Ireland’s Darragh Kenny was the last to go…

Ireland’s Darragh Kenny was the last to go in the Prize of Handwerk with his speedy black steed, Cazador LS, and the pair went on to claim the victory – to the disappointment of André Thieme.


It had seemed like the rider from Mecklenburg, André Thieme, was sure to win the Prize of Handwerk. It would have been the first golden rosette at the Aachen Soers in his career. He was the third last to compete in the 1.45-metre-high speed competition with his Cellestial-son, Cellisto. Up until then, the Swiss show-jumper, Pius Schwizer was in the lead with Grand Cooper after jumping clear in a time of 66.63 seconds. When it was Thieme’s turn, 45 pairs had already tried in vain to overtake the Swiss rider. Then, Thieme and Cellisto entered the ring: Rhythmically and efficiently they strided over the course. The 13-year-old Brandenburg-bred DSP gelding is a talented jumper and Cellisto’s scopey canter did the rest. As the pair flew over the finish line after the last oxer clear three hundredths of a second faster than Schwizer, the audience already began to applaud Thieme loudly as the winner of the competition.


But no jumping class has actually been won, if the speedy Irish riders haven’t yet had their turn. Especially since Darragh Kenny had several advantages going for him: He was namely already able to win the Prize of Handwerk in 2018. What’s more, he was riding a horse that he describes as his speed specialist, the 11-year-old Casall-son, Cazador LS. “He already won the 1.45-metre-high speed class in Calgary. I knew he’d love this stadium,” said Kenny. Because Calgary (or Spruce Meadows), the second open-air venue of the Rolex Grand Slam after Aachen, also has a spacious grass arena. Darragh Kenny was proven right. The black gelding literally flew round the course and sliced over three seconds of Thieme’s and Cellisto’s time. That safely secured him the victory. André Thieme finished second with Cellisto, followed by Pius Schwizer and Grand Cooper.


André Thieme was quick to answer whether he was more overjoyed about coming second or more disappointed at not winning: “More disappointed!” He was nevertheless also very pleased: “That was my first round here and it was a fantastic prelude! That’s how it can continue!” Something that is not improbable at all. Cellisto is Thieme’s speed horse this weekend. He has planned Aretino for the Big Tour and perhaps he will be able to celebrate his first CHIO rosette after all!

Alors on danse: CHIO Aachen 2019 officially opened

There was a certain something in the air…

There was a certain something in the air on Tuesday evening at the Aachen Soers. The tricolore – the French flag in blue, white and red – was flying in the centre of the main stadium. “Bienvenue, la France” rang out of the loudspeakers. And that was only the beginning of a magnificent CHIO Opening Ceremony characterised by lightness, which was hosted by Arnaud Petit and Nathalie Licard, known as “Madame Nathalie” from the Harald Schmidt Show.

Indeed: France proved to be an imaginative, elegant partner country that is wonderfully suitable for festive celebrations! And it additionally proved that it is not called a “horse nation” par excellence without good reason. Because they presented horses en masse throughout the evening. Whether under the saddle, in front of carriages, running free, as elegant riding school horses, trotter, heavy draught horses or gentle Camargue horses. A horse is not simply a horse in France, but a wide range of possibilities. Of course, French equestrian sport legends and current top French riders were also found under the colourful ensemble of the Opening Ceremony. And are you already familiar with horseball?  This combination between handball and basketball on horseback was also invented in France and impressively demonstrated at the Opening Ceremony.

The star of the evening was without doubt the master of liberty dressage: Jean-François Pignon. Nobody else understands better than him how to communicate with horses using mere gestures. He conveyed poetic moments on the “Holy Grass” – he mesmerised 40,000 spectators. The Cadre Noir from Saumur, France’s most famous riding school, is also renowned for its elegance. The establishment was founded back in 1814. In 2019, they presented a fascinating demonstration of their riding skills. They too left behind a lasting impression: The riders of the Garde Républicaine, France’s last cavalry regiment. On Sunday, France’s national holiday, they were still in France parading down the Champs-Elysées and on Tuesday evening they were here patrolling through the Main Stadium of the Soers on their noble steeds. The marine band, “Le Bagad de Lann-Bighoué” from Breton provided the fitting musical accompaniment.

But, of course, other forms of typical French flair couldn’t be missing from the Opening Ceremony. Can-Can dances were on board together with Astérix and Obelix as mascots as well as an imaginative fashion show, organised by the Fashion Design Institute Düsseldorf.

Most of the spectators didn’t just take fantastic images home with them in the late evening, but also the odd Edith Piaf song, interpreted live by Noémie Schröder et Les Ricochets.

Boris Becker found it “amazing”

“Amazing.” That was what Boris Becker posted about…

“Amazing.” That was what Boris Becker posted about the Opening Ceremony of the CHIO Aachen 2019. He had previously visibly enjoyed himself at the “Media Night”, the gala evening in the Champions’ Circle. Following tradition, many celebrities and athletes came to celebrate the opening of the World Equestrian Festival, CHIO Aachen, on Tuesday evening. The Minister President Armin Laschet, the chef Nelson Müller and WDR Director General Tom Buhrow all walked over the red carpet as well as the musician Lou Bega, the actress Nastassja Kinski and the influencer Scarlett Gartmann – who is incidentally also an excellent rider herself. We recommend the Instagram channel @borisbeckerofficial to anyone, who couldn’t be there in person for the Opening Ceremony or who missed it live on WDR: Namely, Germany’s tennis legend diligently posted entries. After the Opening Ceremony, the guests partied late into the early hours while enjoying the exquisite catering services of “Do&Co” from Vienna and the exceptional CHIO Aachen atmosphere.