The 2010 HSBC FEI World Cup™ Eventing series arrives in France this weekend (August 18-22), at Haras du Pin in Normandy. This is a new venue for the series, but not in sporting history – the magnificent national stud at du Pin has hosted some historic Eventing fixtures, including the 1969 European Championships.
A star-studded cast of more than 50 competitors from 12 nations have entered the penultimate leg of the HSBC FEI World Cup™ Eventing series and many, especially the two-horse riders, have a strong chance of completely re-organising the rankings, which carry a lucrative prize-pot of US$180,000.
This is an important team trial for the home side before the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™, and they are fielding a strong contingent, including the 2007 FEI World Cup champion, Nicolas Touzaint (FRA). It will be a first outing in the 2010 series for the former dual European Champion and he could immediately make his mark with Tatchou.
Other French riders to watch include Gwendolen Fer, winner of the HSBC Training Bursary at Pau (FRA) last year, Pascal Leroy with old stalwart Glenburny de Leou and the up-and-coming Minos de Petra, and the 2002 World Champion Jean Teulere on Loberon de Sourire and Matelot du Grand Val, fifth at Pau.
Two who have already won an HSBC FEI World Cup event this year and will be hoping to challenge Michael Jung (GER), the current rankings leader, are Oliver Townend (GBR) the Tattersalls victor, who rides Imperial Master, and Sam Griffiths (AUS), who captured the Chatsworth (GBR) leg and rides the former racehorse Danaan Prince.
Others who could top up their points include Clayton Fredericks (AUS), who will be hoping to better his eighth place at Malmö last weekend, Ruth Edge (GBR) and Fiona Hobby (GBR).
Follow the event on www.legrandcomplet.com
FEI TV: Highlights of Haras du Pin will be shown on www.feitv.org
Calendar of events
1. Tallahassee (USA), 5-7 March
2. Kihikihi (NZL), 2-4 April
3. Sydney (AUS), 7-9 May
4. Marbach (GER), 7-9 May
5. Chatsworth (GBR), 15-16 May
6. Tattersalls (IRL), 27-30 May
7. Strzegom (POL), 24-27 June
8. Minsk (BLR), 21-25 July
9. Rebecca Farm, Kalispell (USA), 22-25 July
10. Malmö (SWE), 13-15 August
11. Haras du Pin (FRA), 18-22 August
12. Schenefeld (GER), 26-29 August
Standings (after 10 of 12 events)
1 Michael Jung (GER) 142 points
2 Megan Jones (AUS) 138
3 Phillip Dutton (USA) 131
4= Clarke Johnston (NZL) 128
4= Lucy Wiegersma (GBR) 128
6 Alexey Korshunov (RUS) 125
7= Kai Rüder (GER) 122
7= Andreas Dibowski 122
9= Sonja Johnson (AUS) 119
9= Kai-Steffen Meier (GER) 119
11 Andrew Downes (GBR) 104
12 Frank Ostholt (GER) 101
For the full rankings, see www.feiworldcup.org
Prize-money distribution (in US$)
1st place: 50,000