Cantering up to a 1.60m oxer isn't for the faint of heart, let alone jumping an entire course in a packed stadium, representing your home country. Or so I've heard, because it's not like I've ever done it (or plan to do it in the future, thank you very much).
We give elite show jumpers a pass when it comes to equitation sometimes, because, well, they're the ones jumping the big fences while I admire from a distance with my feet firmly planted on solid ground. Sometimes these über-brave, no holds barred pairs seem to defy gravity entirely, taking to the skies in awe-inspiring form.
Frank Schuttert and Chianti's Champion. Photo by Thomas Reiner.
I'm just wondering how a man that tall manages to keep his balance in the saddle. I mean, he can obviously do it, considering he had a clear first round in the Grand Prix of Aachen last month, which is something you won't find on my show record.
Roger Yves Bost and Sydney Une Prince. Photo by Thomas Reiner.
Sure, his style might be unconventional, but Bosty can get away with it because he delivers clear after clear.
Daniel Bluman and Ladriano Z. Photo by Henry Recinos.
The only thing Daniel and I have in common is that we both ride Zangersheides—him in 5* Prixes and me in the low adult jumpers.
Maikel van der Vleuten and Salomon. Photo by Thomas Reiner.
He's just casually standing up in his stirrups when I'd already be so far in the backseat. Cool.
Ali Wolff and Casall. Photo by Erin Gilmore.
Do you SEE how hard this horse cracks his back? Major props to Ali for staying with him so well.
Feature photo by Thomas Reiner.
Written by Kate Kosnoff
Kate Kosnoff is an equestrian journalist, blogger and photographer. When she isn’t working, Kate can usually be found sipping green tea, scrolling through Twitter, or petting her horses—sometimes a combination of the three. She is based in Indiana and can often be spotted in jumper rings across the Midwest and Florida aboard her strawberry roan, Waffle.