Aussies competing in Aachen this week…
Showjumping- Edwina Alexandra
Dressage- Hayley Beresford & Lyndal Oatley
Eventing- Clayton & Lucinda Fredericks
Driving- Boyd Excell.
Vaulting- Krystle Lander
A little background about the show in Aachen….
The Organizing body, Aachen Laurensberger Rennverein was founded in 1898. Originally the ALRV was started as a horse racing club designed to liven up the day to day life of local horse enthusiasts.
The 1920’s saw the move to the bigger and better facility in the Soers, Aachen, and in 1924 the Club hosted their first ‘riding and driving tournament’ as opposed to the normal ‘race day’.
In 1927 they hosted the first International competition and then two years later Aachen also hosted its first Nations Cup event. From then on the show has got bigger from year to year and is known as one of the most important shows on any show calendar and is said to have the best atmosphere!
Nowadays the show is home to competition in Dressage, Showjumping, Eventing, Driving and Vaulting.
There are a total of 26 nations competing this year, with 300 riders, driver and vaulters with 500 horses! They are all competing for the prestige of having competed at Aachen, and also for a share in the whopping €1.6 million prizemoney!
If you are looking to do a little shopping in Aachen, be sure to have comfy shoes to walk around. There are over 170 exhibitors in over 200 tents, in total 14,000m² of tents!
To help make the horses feel at home, Aachen has 400 solid boxes to house all the important 4 legged competitors. Supplying 18,000 kg of Oats and another 28,000 kg of hay, 1500 bales of straw to feed, and 600 bales of straw for bedding!
It is said that to be anyone in the world of equestrian sport, you have to have competed at Aachen. The atmosphere is electric and the competition fierce. However, as Klaus Pavel, the President of the ALRV says “Aachen stands for top sport - but also and above all for a folk festival".
Here’s hoping that the weather forecast stays true and we have beautiful sunny days for the duration of the show.
Footnote by Berni Saunders - Aachen is a wonderful city and everyone celebrates the rich heritage of all things equine along with a love of horse sports. Aachen is the city of rain and the organisers knew that mother nature could easily interrupt the timetable for the World Equestrian Games in 2006.
The German power company Stawag and the Aachen showgrounds organising committee got together and installed underground heating on the main stadium and also on part of the cross country track so that a torrential downpour would be drained and dried in a very short time frame. During WEG there was such a downpour during the showjumping and centimeters of water sat on the ground - within 1 hour it was dry and gone with the grass beautifully firm and ready for the next competitor. Here are some images of the beautiful historic city of Aachen and also the stables and grounds... enjoy!