Soy Coll Angel (ESP) riding Warren Hill Chayze, individual gold medalists

Ermelo Hosts Endurance's Top Stars

19 September 2021

France and Spain took Team titles...

An exciting day unfolded on September 9 at the FEI World Endurance Championship Young Riders and Juniors in Ermelo, the Netherlands as 74 riders representing 20 countries competed in the 120km event.

 

The young athletes from France won the Team gold, and Saeed Salem Almuhairi of the United Arab Emirates captured his third consecutive Young Rider championship aboard Haleh, a 10-year-old Arabian mare, owned by M7 Stables. Haleh also won gold at the FEI Endurance World Championship in Italy earlier this year with Salem Hamad Saeed Al Kitbi.

 

Team Malaysia won the silver behind France, and Belgium earned the Team bronze.

 

In the Individual medals, Abdulla Ali Alamri on Tonki Dee Boo Basil of the United Arab Emirates won the silver, and Rut Badia Marfa on Addhy El Ziryab of Spain finished in the bronze position.

 

In the FEI Endurance European Championships, also in Ermelo, Spain's Soy Coll Angel & Warren Hill Chayze were victorious. France's Vincent Gaudriot and Spain's Maria Alvarez Ponton took silver and bronze respectively. Spain took Team gold, with France in second and Italy third.

 

Challenging Course

The course at Ermelo challenged the Young Riders as they had to successfully navigate varying terrain and the environmental conditions throughout the day.

 

Horses and riders completed four loops to comprise the 120-km course, with a mandatory veterinary checkpoint at the end of each loop. The course took riders through open fields, wooded sections, and hilly terrain. The welfare of the horse is paramount in all Endurance events and these Young Riders, and their crew members carefully managed the equine athletes throughout the day to ensure their success.

   

A Real Team Job

The Young Riders from France rode consistently all day, and started and finished as a team, coming in fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth individually.

 

Team members included Lea Vanderkerckhove on Guerma Du Lauragais, Charlotte Chazel on Akaba Du Ceor, Simon Menez on Sliman El Ramaadi, and Eloise Laques on Golden Falcon TT.

 

“I’m very happy to get this title; it was a real team job,” said Jean Michel Grimal, the Chef d’Equipe of the French team.

 

 

“When we left for the last loop, we were in silver, and we got the gold on the green carpet. I’m really happy to see my country is back at the top.”

 

“The strategy was easy, we knew the horses are able to do between 21 and 22km/hour,” Grimal continued. “My first ask to our riders was, don’t forget the last loop is 31km. I would like to say thank you to my federation and the organising committee. Ermelo is a fantastic venue, and the track is amazing.”

 

Team Malaysia’s riders finished in 13th, 15th, 16th, and 27th for their silver medal. Riders for team Belgium completed in 11th, 29th, and 31st to secure the bronze medal.

 

Almuhairi’s Glory

Almuhairi, at age 19, again rode a strategically for the Individual gold. The event displayed his maturity and Haleh’s talent as he guided the horse through the course in five hours, nine minutes, and 10 seconds, followed closely by his teammate, Ali Alamri.

 

The repeat performance for Almuhairi is reminiscent of his championship wins in San Rossore in 2019 and Valeggio Sul Mincico in 2017.

 

Endurance is truly a team sport as was evidenced by the results of the FEI World Endurance Championship Young Riders and Juniors.

 

 

Young Riders and their horses are a team, and the cooperation and integrity each pair exhibited throughout the day while working with their teammates shown through in the ride standings. Finally, the crews, trainers, and owners are an integral, helping ensure success on the course.

 

Strategy, passion, and a keen understanding of the horse and dedication to their welfare are necessary for success in endurance riding.

 

The young riders that competed at the FEI World Endurance Championship Young Riders and Juniors are the future of the sport and have proven that they have the capability to perform and excel on the world stage.

 

Watch this RIDE video from this year's Longines FEI Endurance World Championship™ at the San Rossore Estate in Pisa…

 

Words by Stacy Stearns

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