World of Showjumping
World of ShowjumpingWorld of Showjumping

Martin Fuchs and Conner Jei win the CSI5* 1.60m Rolex Grand Prix at Royal Windsor Horse Show 2023

Sunday, 14 May 2023
CSI5* Royal Windsor Horse Show 2023

Photo © Royal Windsor Horse Show/Peter Nixon Martin Fuchs and Connor Jei, winners of the CSI5* Rolex Grand Prix at Royal Windsor Horse Show 2023. Photo © Royal Windsor Horse Show/Peter Nixon.


Edited press release from Royal Windsor Horse Show



The 2023-edition of the Royal Windsor Horse Show drew to a close on Sunday after an incredible five days of top class equestrian action, with Switzerland’s Martin Fuchs and the 12-year-old gelding Conner Jei (Connor 48 x Cosimo) taking the top honours in the CSI5* 1.60m Rolex Grand Prix.

With the world’s best riders gathered, and a truly international field representing 12 different countries, the competition was set to be fierce. 

It was none other than living legend John Whitaker (GBR) who was first to tackle the technical and up-to-height track set by Portuguese course designer Bernardo Costa Cabral, but he unfortunately could not quite pull off the result that both he and the crowd had hoped for. Second into the ring, Bertram Allen (IRL) and Pacino Amiro (Pacino x NC Amiro) set the standard for the rest of the field, and, just a few horses later, Kevin Staut (FRA) and Dialou Blue PS (Diarado's Boy x Chacco-Blue) ensured that there would be a jump-off. Clear rounds came throughout the class, with a total of four clears before the mid-way break.

Britain’s Scott Brash and Joseph Stockdale were some of the unlucky riders who finished on four faults. However, Greece’s only representative — and Royal Windsor Horse Show first-timer — Ioli Mytilineou, joined the exclusive group proceeding into the jump-off, as did winners of the 2021 Rolex Grand Prix at the show, Ben Maher and Explosion W (Chacco-Blue x Baloubet du Rouet), and former world no. one Martin Fuchs, who was third behind Maher that day. 

In total, nine combinations made it through to the jump-off, providing top-class entertainment for the packed-out crowds. Bertram Allen and Pacino Amiro were first into the Castle Arena. The partnership, who has had huge successes together, produced a faultless round in the time of 34.50 seconds. Five combinations in total jumped clear, but it was the battle between Ben Maher and Martin Fuchs that truly set the crowds alight. Maher, who has just come back from an injury, and his Olympic gold-medal winning gelding, looked to be unbeatable, but Fuchs’ spectacular turn to the penultimate fence helped him clinch the victory by 0.40 seconds. Allen took the third place, followed by Max Kühner (AUT) and Elektric Blue P (Eldorado Vd Zeshoek x For Pleasure) in fourth, and Roger Yves Bost (FRA) in fifth aboard Cassius Clay Vdv Z (Calvino Z x Wolfgang) – all of them double clear.

Photo © Royal Windsor Horse Show/Peter Nixon Martin Fuchs and Conner Jei. Photo © Royal Windsor Horse Show/Peter Nixon.

A delighted Fuchs said: “Connor Jei was fantastic today. He’s back after quite a long break since Geneva as he did a lot of shows last year, so we gave him the indoor season off. To be honest he wasn’t so easy at the last show I took him to, so I wanted some advice on what I should be doing differently and how I could help the horse to be at his best again, so I called my uncle – Markus Fuchs – and he has been riding him three times a week, so I’m very lucky to have him to help.”

Fuchs continued: “The Rolex Grand Prix always has the best horse and rider combinations so it’s an honour to be competing, and then to be winning and to be standing on top of the podium at such a prestigious Rolex Grand Prix makes me very proud.”

On his round, he said: “I knew who I needed to watch, and Bertram and Ben were the two rounds I watched. Bertram had a hard draw – to go first in the jump-off is never easy, but he did everything very well. Then I watched Ben and saw where he left out the strides compared to Bertram, and just tried to do the same round as that, just hoping to be a bit quicker. I think I made up a little bit of time to the second last – I knew that I wanted to do seven strides to the turn, which is what Ben did, I actually didn’t turn as hard as him, so I really had to push hard for those seven strides and I think that’s what made it quicker in the end.”

Maher, at only his second show since breaking his shoulder, said: “I’m very happy, Explosion jumped incredible, he’s been out for eight or nine months, he just did two small classes last week so to come here this week and show his experience and perform in a Rolex Grand Prix like that, I’m very proud of my team bringing him back. I did what I had to do in the jump-off, I took a lot of risks and nine times out of ten that might have been enough, but it’s never over when you’ve got Martin after you. I don’t think I could have done any more, on the day he was the better rider and I had to settle for second.” 

Allen added: “I was first to go in the jump-off and with the line-up we have here, it was always going to be very difficult. I gave it a good go and I’m very happy with my horse.”

This photo has been added to your cart !

Your shopping cart »
This website is using cookies for statistics, site optimization and retargeting purposes. You consent to our cookies if you continue to use this website. Read more here.