World of Showjumping
World of ShowjumpingWorld of Showjumping

Inside the Rolex Grand Slam

Thursday, 01 September 2022
Inside the Rolex Grand Slam

Rider watch: CSIO Spruce Meadows 'Masters' 2022

Photo © Rolex Grand Slam / Ashley Neuhof. The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping returns to the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ from 7-11 September 2022. Photo © Rolex Grand Slam / Ashley Neuhof.


Press release from the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping



The Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping returns to the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ from 7-11 September 2022, with the CP ‘International’, presented by Rolex on the Sunday providing a thrilling finale to five days of outstanding sport. Located in the foothills of the Alberta Rocky Mountains in Calgary, the show will welcome the world’s best horse and rider combinations to what is often regarded to as the leading equestrian venue in North America.

Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping – Rider Watch 

Following his spectacular win at CHIO Aachen with Ben 431, Gerrit Nieberg comes to the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ as the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping Live Contender. This will be the first time that the combination will make the journey across the Atlantic Ocean to this iconic venue, with the duo looking to carry forward their winning momentum from CHIO Aachen to continue their quest to become the next Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping victor.  

Joining Nieberg are a host of world-class horse and rider combinations. Three of the Swedish FEI World Championship gold medal-winning team come to Calgary with their medal-winning horses. Jens Fredricson, Peder Fredricson and Henrik von Eckermann will all be aiming to claim their first victory in the CP ‘International’, presented by Rolex at the beautiful venue. von Eckermann and King Edward are sure to be the hot favourites heading into the third Rolex Grand Slam Major of the year, having won the Individual gold medal in Herning. Peder Fredricson is also expected to be at the top of the leaderboard, having won two Rolex Grands Prix in the last two months at Knokke Hippique and the Brussels Stephex Masters. These combinations will be riding full of confidence and will be looking to continue their top-form into the show. 

Out of the six Rolex Testimonees competing at the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, current World No.2 Martin Fuchs will lead the way. The Swiss, who made history by winning consecutive Rolex Grands Prix at CHI Geneva in 2019 and 2021, will be hoping to claim the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping bonus for winning two out of four Majors. Fuchs has had a phenomenal 2022 season thus far, winning the FEI World Cup™ Final and the Rolex Grand Prix at Jumping International de Dinard.



Live Contender interview: Gerrit Nieberg

Photo © Jacques Toffi Gerrit Nieberg. Photo © Jacques Toffi.

How does it feel to be the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping Live Contender? 

It is a real privilege to be the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping Live Contender. It has always been a dream of mine and I have always looked up to the other riders who have achieved this. After my victory in the Rolex Grand Prix, I think it took a week or so to sink in that I am the Live Contender!

What are your goals, dreams and ambitions for 2022?

I would like to continue with the Rolex Grand Slam shows in Spruce Meadows and then Geneva. This was something that I had not originally planned for because, due to my previous world ranking, I would not have been able to get into these shows. However, now that I have a chance to compete these shows, I want to do my best and give everything to continue this momentum.

When did your love for show jumping start, and who has inspired you the most throughout your career?

I only started riding when I was 13 years old. Before this and growing up, I was more interested in other sports like soccer. However, I did grow up with horses because of my parents so there were always horses around and I decided to give it a go one day. 

My love for show jumping developed quickly and one week after starting to ride, I decided that I wanted to become a professional show jumper. From that moment on, I was working and training hard every day to achieve this dream. 

My dad was the person who inspired me most when I was young due to all his experience and success. My dream has always been to be as good as he was and still is, and maybe even be a bit better one day! I still really look up to him in terms of who he is and how much he works each and every day. Although he is not showing competitively anymore, he is still riding every day at home. His motivation and support for everything that I do is unbelievable and very inspiring.



The vet-check: Dr Dan French

Photo © Spruce Meadows Media Dr Dan French. Photo © Spruce Meadows Media.

What is your role at CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’? 

I first came on board after doing some postgrad work in 1988 and have been the resident veterinarian ever since. I work across the many tournaments hosted here, including the ‘Masters’, and throughout the busy summer season, taking care of the 900 horses we get on the grounds over that six-week period. As for my current job, the FEI define my role at Spruce Meadows as being the Veterinary Service Manager. It’s an oversight role working with the organising committee, helping to coordinate the visiting delegates and veterinary commission to ensure that the facility, surgical backup, and the treating areas are all ready for the tournaments. I basically work as the oversight veterinarian for the treatment side of things, rather than the commission. 

Have you worked on any other international equestrian events?

Earlier in my career I was invited to the World Cup Jumping Final in Las Vegas, as part of the treating team. That was during an era when the World Cup Final was taking place in Las Vegas every second year, and I went down as part of the veterinary team on a number of occasions. Aside from that, I haven't worked as an official at any other international events – my focus has primarily been on Spruce Meadows.

How important is nutrition for a horse’s wellbeing?

Nutrition is just one part of the equation. Horses are amazing in what they can metabolise, so as long as we maintain a nice, consistent diet they should be fine. Rather than complicated nutrition, I think the hardest thing international horses face is the change of diet as they travel from event to event. When they're going from venue to venue, trying to maintain consistent nutrition or feed source can be difficult. When you look at our international horses arriving by planes, enduring long transport times, you can find that there is an adjustment period and some of our toughest cases have been through a lack of adaptation to the new feed source. 



About the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping

The Rolex Grand Slam is considered by the sport to be the ultimate equestrian challenge, primarily due to the sporting prowess required to achieve this feat. It is a quest taken on by the world’s top riders, vying to secure the legendary status associated with winning the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

The format of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping is simple: anyone who wins three Majors in a row receives the Rolex Grand Slam trophy and a €1 million bonus on top of the class’s prize-money. If that same rider then continues their success by winning a fourth Major in succession, they will be rewarded with an additional €1million bonus. If two shows are won in succession, the bonus is €500,000 or if an athlete wins only 2 majors in a period of four successive shows, the bonus is €250,000.

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.