Welcome to the FEI World Breeding Eventing Championships for Young Horses 2015, a pivotal fixture in every season which this year celebrates its 30th anniversary.
The venue at the spectacular French National Stud at l’Isle de Briand, Le Lion d’Angers is extraordinary in itself. But also quite amazing is the consistent quality of the horses that emerge from both the 6 and 7-year-old categories at this annual gathering which draws enormous crowds of young horses, competitors, owners, breeding experts and fans from all around the world.
Designed along the same lines as the FEI World Breeding Dressage and Jumping Championships which highlight the latest rising stars of their respective equestrian disciplines, the horses competing at the Eventing Championships are specially selected by the National Federations of their countries and so fly their national flag. This of course gives the competition that extra edge, as success reflects well on the relevant Studbooks.
Such is the high profile of the event that many of the leading riders in the world are paired up with the potential stars of the future, and it was current World No. 1, Germany’s Michael Jung, who steered the Hannoverian, Star Connection, to victory in the 6-year-old Championship last year. However it is the horses that are the main focus, and the 7-year-old champion undeniably demonstrated the true value of this fixture. The French Anglo-Arab, Tanareze who is by the international Jumping stallion Jaguar Mail, followed on from his victory in the 6-year-old division the previous year to take the 7-year-old title for his 27-year-old French rider, Thomas Carlile, last October. It was quite an achievement, suggesting a great future for both horse and rider.
As you gather for the 2015 edition, I send you my very best wishes for an enjoyable weekend of great sport. I would ask you to take the time to admire, and compliment, the dedication and skill of the men and women whose knowledge, intuition and expertise has led to the production of the wonderful young horses you will see before you. Without these people we have no top-level sport, and we owe them a great debt of gratitude.
On behalf of the Fédération Equestre Internationale I also send my best wishes to the Organisers, Officials, volunteers and spectators for another memorable Championship.
Ingmar De Vos