KB: We achieved every possible title to win in Individual Vaulting. Both my horse and I are in peak form. I just couldn't imagine a better way to retire, so I took this chance for a perfect end.
And why now, after the FEI World Cup™ Final specifically?
KB: I made the decision to retire after Tryon and liked the idea to make a farewell tour at the FEI World Cup™. That's why I decided to stop only after the final.
What have been your career highlights?
KB: Emotionally, my first medal at the FEI World Championship in 2016. The 2017 gold medal at the Europeans was probably my best competition in terms of winning the title with a commanding lead. The FEI World Equestrian Games™ in 2018 was probably my highlight in mental strength. Tryon was one of the hardest competitions of my life. Having some difficulties in every round and still staying focused and confident is my personal highlight.
Have you achieved everything you hoped you would as a vaulter?
KB: Everything I hoped for and more!
How has this season been for you?
KB: What has made this year so special for me is not the incredible success but more that I could really enjoy every single moment. The years before I was more tense.
Are you hoping to go out with a bang in Saumur?!
KB: I hope that I manage to savour every moment of my last competition. I want my horse to have fun, my lunger, the audience, the judges. Don't get me wrong, I'm still up for a good battle, but the title comes second.
I am showing three different freestyles and include a new exercise. Can this be rated as a bang??
What are your plans for the future?
KB: In Vaulting I want to be a strong Athlete Representative for our sport. And maybe link my job to something closer to the sport. I always wanted an orthopaedic who had a clue about vaulting.
Outside Vaulting, I’ll finally have time for vacations!
Will you miss competing?
KB: Absolutely! But there is also a lot I missed over the last few years. Now it's time to catch up with everything that took a back seat to Vaulting.
Is there anything you wish you'd done differently in your career?
KB: Fix the bell boot better at the Europeans 2015 in Aachen. ;)
Could you briefly summarise what Vaulting has meant to you and your life?
KB: It gave me happiness, balance, health, my best friends and taught me discipline, humbleness, and true team spirit. In short, it's the love of my life.