Stepping into the limelight in the 2011 RWE Prize of North-Rhine-Westphalia in Aachen, Hans-Dieter Dreher has never looked back. After his second place in this prestigious class on a summer day in July, Hansi’s life took a turn which has taken him to the top of the sport. We sat down to talk with the German rider – known as one of the fastest, and the nicest, on the international circuit.
Hansi started to ride already as a child – “I’ve been riding all my life,” as he puts it – as his father had a riding school. Horses are naturally in Hansi’s blood, and he is a true horseman. When we meet him after a class in Paris, he brings proof of just that as we comment that it was a shame about his fence down. “I rode like a total amateur, I had to pet my horse and say I was sorry as I rode out of the ring,” he says – taking on all the blame after his round. While that round wasn’t Hansi’s best, he has a very impressive record of wins; he has won big classes in Pioltello, Mannheim, Ascona, Rio, Hannover, Lyon, Basel, München, Wiesbaden, Chantilly, Spruce Meadows, Vienna, Stuttgart and Abu Dhabi – to mention just some of his top results over the past two and a half years.