Jumping and Driving: Two World Cups in Bordeaux

Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Posted by Jessica Rodrigues

From February 4th – 6th, 2011 ---

A few weeks before the final that takes place in the German city Leipzig this 2010/2011 season, the International Jumping de Bordeaux will be a crucial stage in the “Rolex FEI World CupTM Jumping”. This 2011 final will be on at the end of April, at the same time as the Driving World Cup final, a very spectacular competition that will also pass by Bordeaux with a qualification stage. For three days (February 4th-6th), the Parc des Expositions de Bordeaux will hold those two stages of the World Cup that will reunite the world’s elite riders in jumping and driving in hall 3 that has a capacity of 5.800 spectators.
The three days of this eleventh qualifying stage of the FEI Rolex World Cup are of the highest strategic importance to the riders involved and crucial to the world’s best, who stayed a bit behind from the beginning of the season. It is also of great importance to the French represented by only three riders in those stages to be held outside of the French borders. In Bordeaux, ten French riders will thus have the possibility to prove themselves at home, to gain their place for the following three stages, and maybe even win a qualification for the final in Leipzig that will take place from April 27th until May 1st. The Grand Prix FEI Rolex World Cup of Bordeaux is always a breathtaking class, and there is no reason why the 2011 edition shouldn’t follow the rule.

Several important riders of the world’s Top 10 have already announced their participation: Marcus Ehning (GER), Rolf-Goran Bengtsson (SWE), Marco Kutscher (GER), Edwina Alexander (AUS), Pénélope Leprévost (FRA, n°10), Kevin Staut, the world’s number one who just won his first World Cup stage in Geneva, Jessica Kuerten (IRL) who dreams of being the first woman to win a bordelaise stage, or Ludger Beerbaum (GER) who is still lacking this victory.

The French at the top!
For any newcomer to this sport, a stage of the World Cup is the best way to get to know Showjumping. More than any other competition, a World Cup event combines intensity, passion and emotion in sport.  Not to mention that the competition reunites the world’s elite riders, among which the French (world team vice-champions) have regained their place with Kevin Staut, the current world #1 and World Cup leader, ahead.

Driving World Cup: “The carriages of fire”…
Indoor driving is equally a discipline created to attract a great audience. Fast, tremendous and aesthetic – it’s a unique experience to see these carriages, commanded by the world’s best drivers and pulled by four attentive horses, crow about the malices of a torturous gymkhana at high speed, each turn being under control!

The drivers qualified for Bordeaux – the last qualifying stage of the season – are Fredrik Persson (SWE), Werner Ulrich (CHE), Tomas Eriksson (SWE) Theo Timmerman (NLD) and Daniel Wurgler (CHE).

They are aces in their discipline, and no less than their Showjumping colleagues they want to collect points in Aquitaine, since the final is to be held in Leipzig at the same time as the Jumping final.

But Bordeaux wouldn’t be Bordeaux without a program of competitions alongside the World Cup. The women are always looking forward to competing in Aquitaine in the “amazons” competitions that are reserved for 20 of them. It’s an occasion for young “ascending” riders like Charlotte Casiraghi, who will be present in Bordeaux this time, to be confronted with the best of the world.

Jumping l’Expo: A salon for everyone
Apart from those two great sporting events, Bordeaux holds moments of pleasure and conviviality outside the arena. There is a reason why the riders are always relaxed: the environment relieves them from all stress. They can be found by the stands of “Jumping L’Expo”, where the equestrian universe is represented through high quality offers by 70 exhibitors. The access to the salon is free.