The world class line up of riders for the much-anticipated Valkenswaard leg of the 2015 series can be revealed as World No1 Scott Brash takes pole position for the 12th leg of the championship.
It will be a battle of the titans for the high stakes 10th anniversary home leg of the Longines Global Champions Tour and the 12th stage of the 2015 circuit.
Scott, who sits at the top of the LGCT ranking table will look to extend his lead over second place rider, Luciana Diniz (POR), who lost the title at last weekend’s Grand Prix of London. With just 28 points between them every point will count as we move into the decisive stages of the Championship race.
London Grand Prix winner Rolf-Göran Bengtsson (SWE) will be back in action and looking to maintain the momentum of his recent success by closing the six point gap to third place man Christian Ahlmann (GER), last year’s Valkenswaard Grand Prix winner. Sheikh Ali Bin Khalid Al Thani (QAT) will also be one of the hot contenders in the big 1,60m class as he sits only three points away from fourth place.
The high calibre turnout for the latest stage of the world’s premier championship series will see the inauguration of the all new, state-of-the-art Tops International Arena, with a spectacular opening ceremony on Friday 14th August. Local favourites Maikel van der Vleuten (NED), Gerco Schröder (NED), Jur Vrieling (NED), and Harrie Smolders (NED) will be just a few of the names in competition in the stunning grass arena during the CSI5* classes, held over four full days of competition.
The USA will showcase many of their best riders, with Kent Farrington (USA), Lauren Hough (USA), Jessica Springsteen (USA, Katherine Dinan (USA), Beezie Madden (USA) and Reed Kessler (USA) just a few of the names in attendance. France too has a strong line up, with Cannes Grand Prix winning Pénélope Leprevost (FRA) looking to do the double and win her second Grand Prix of the year, and Simon Delestre (FRA), Kevin Staut (FRA), Roger-Yves Bost (FRA) and Patrice Delaveau (FRA) looking to improve their positions on the ranking board.
World Number 2, Daniel Deusser (GER), Ludger Beerbaum (GER), Athina Onassis de Miranda (GRE), Constant Van Paesschen (BEL), Pius Schwizer (SUI), Edwina Tops-Alexander (AUS), Marcus Ehning (GER) and Rodrigo Pessoa (BRA) will be just a few of the names competing.
The outcome of Valkenswaard will trigger a race to the finish for the next three events of the circuit with a frantic jostling for position in Rome, Vienna and finally in Doha, Qatar.
Once again the event in Valkenswaard will be a magnet for the best riders in the world, a whole host of international VIP guests and thousands of spectators. It will be a festival of show jumping with top-level competitions, classes for Young Horses and amateur riders, with almost 900,000 euros in prize money available across the event.
All the action will be broadcast via the exclusive Longines Global Champions Tour livestreaming service and the Grand Prix will be broadcast live on GCT TV, Equidia Life, Class Horse TV, BeIN Sports and RAI (live from the second round), with Eurosport broadcasting the Grand Prix from 22:05 local time.
For the full rider list, please click here
Press Release by Press Office Longines Global Champions Tour
Photo: Stefano Grasso / LGCT