The magnificent setting of City Hall in Paris played host last night to the draws for both the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping and FEI World Cup™ Dressage 2018 Finals.
Guests were greeted by the arresting music of the world-famous band from La Guarde Republicaine (The Republican Guard) and the atmosphere was electric as Sweden’s Henrik von Eckermann was joined by Rio Olympic team gold medalist Roger Yves Bost from France to select the order-of-go for Thursday’s opening jumping competition in which America’s McLain Ward will begin to defend his 2017 title with the brilliant mare HH Azur.
It’s going to be a battle of the giants with a total of 37 riders from 17 countries will battle it out over the next three days of jumping.
“It’s been our dream for many years to bring these Finals back to Paris,” said show organizer Sylvie Robert, “and now at last our dream has come true!” Both the jumping and dressage finals have taken place at the Parisian venue before, but never together, and only once.
America’s Katharine Burdsall, riding The Natural, claimed the ninth jumping title in the City of Lights all the way back in 1986, and Finland’s Kyra Kyrklund and Matador won the sixth FEI World Cup™ Dressage title in 1991.
With the riders and their horses ready to go, and fans pouring into the city with great anticipation, the stage is set for a fantastic weekend of top sport.
FEI President, Ingmar de Vos, said “it’s an honor to be here in Paris, home of the Olympic Games in 1900 and 1924, and of course 2024, but also the home of so many other great sporting moments. The world’s best partnerships have fought hard to be here and they are ready to claim their piece of history!”
View the order-of-go for the first round of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final (1.60m speed round) at this link.
Source: Louise Parkes/FEI