Swedish Chef d’Equipe Sylve Söderstrand has announced the five riders that will travel to Normandy next month to represent Sweden at the 2014 Alltech World Equestrian Games. The team will consist of Rolf-Göran Bengtsson with Casall Ask, Malin Baryard-Johnsson with H&M Tornesch, Peder Fredricson with H&M Sibon, Alexander Zetterman with Cafino and Henrik von Eckermann with Gotha FRH.
About some of the Swedish Team…
Rolf-Goran Bengtsson; An individual Olympic Silver Medal winner, Rolf-Göran has come a long way since his days of riding at his parents’ farm in Sweden. Rolf was originally educated to work as a mechanic, and combined this job with riding horses for nine years. In 1986, horses became his full-time job and ten years later he left Sweden to work with Jan Tops in Holland, where he stayed until he and his business partner Bo Kristofferson moved to Breitenburg in 2003. Rolf-Goran had a 9-year relationship with Stud La Silla that came to an end early 2013. Rolf Goran began riding for Lego-owner Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen’s team Stutteri Ask shortly after his split from La Silla.
Rolf-Göran is a regular on the Swedish Nations Cup team and has represented his country in four Olympic Games, three World Championships, seven European Championships and qualified for and impressive nine FEI World Cup Finals.
Henrik von Eckerman; “My mum always had horses at the back of the house, we used to take them for hacks,” he says. Henrik’s breakthrough came when he started training with the Swedish Olympic rider Peder Fredricson. Henrik won a Young Riders European Team Silver medal with Chess when he was in his final year of Young Riders.
At 22, Henrik started training at the Ludger Beerbaum Stables in Riesenbeck. He has been a member of Beerbaum team since 2002. In 2011, Ludger Beerbaum bought the mare L.B. Paola for Henrik to ride and the pair won the 2011 Paderborn Grand Prix. Shortly after this, Ludger gave him one of his top horses, Coupe de Coeur, to ride. Henrik and Coupe de Coeur played a key part in the Swedish team qualifying for the 2012 Olympic Games at the 2011 Madrid European Championships.