On the bright spring day of 7th March Grand International Equestrian Club “PRADAR” (Moscow) was delighted to witness a phenomenal moment. A 95-year old former soviet equestrian star Nina Gromova has mounted a horse again!
Nina Gromova is a well-known sportswoman and Soviet equestrian sport record holder. She is famous for competing the same horse – thoroughbred Dida (Blasius x Dideldumdei) – in showjumping, eventing, steeple-chase and dressage. Both in eventing and jumping Nina Gromova and Dida were national champions, in 4 and 6 km steeple-chase races this pair has set national records and one of these still remains unbeaten. But the most glorious success reached Gromova and Dida in dressage where they have climbed up to Olympic level. Despite such a glorious sport success Nina Gromova has completed her tournament career quite early, devoting herself to judging and working at international competition rules as a member of the first FEI Dressage Committee together with Horst Niemack (GER) and Gustaf Nyblaeus (SWE). Later on she has coached riders in Belarus, Lithuania and has never refused athletes to help with any horse riding problems. Thus, Nina Gromova has carried non-systemic riding experience up to the 1990s until a fall and a fracture of her hip has put a "cross" on horse-riding phenomenal athlete as it seemed at that time.
This year Nina Gromova has celebrated her 95th birthday and she has made a decision to surprise everyone with a gala-comeback once again confirming that equestrian sport has no age restrictions! Specially for this event GIEC "PRADAR" provided a 15-year-old Latvian-bred mare named Moulin Rouge, which, as if realizing the significance of the role assigned to her, was trembling to her rider. Once in the saddle, Nina Gromova immediately demonstrated an ideal position in the saddle, dismantled the reins in the old manner of "three-one", and began walking through the arena telling the audience about her feeling of concrete horse and the peculiarities of the modern saddles comparing to the old flat ones they used in the middle of XX century. Everyone was literally frozen with excitement as this moment was something historical! In the meantime, Gromova simply emanated ease and confidence as if everything was on her side. The happiness that sparkled at this moment in the bright eyes of the Soviet sport legend became the best gift for all those gathered at the arena! This brave and principled athlete has not just done an act of claiming to be world record, but also proved that nothing is impossible for a rider who sincerely lives with equestrian sport and horses: such people are not affected by age or any other obstacles and stays in a saddle for all their lives!