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Marcus Ehning: “This is a lost time for some horses"

Thursday, 29 October 2020

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping. Marcus Ehning. Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.


Text © World of Showjumping



As predicted by many, the Covid-19 pandemic has hit Europe with a second wave. With measures and restrictions being tightened in most countries as cases are surging, indoor show after indoor show is being cancelled. Traditionally the highlight during the winter season, the Longines FEI World Cup Western European League has been cut down dramatically over the last months – with only three legs currently remaining in the calendar for 2020/2021. World-wide there are three CSI5* events scheduled from October to December, compared to twelve last year – two of them are indoors. The number of CSI4* shows in the same period is now six – two of which are indoors – compared to thirteen last year. 

What plans are the riders making for the winter season with so much uncertainty and so few indoor events? World of Showjumping asks some of the top riders how they schedule for the months ahead. Next out answering our questions is German ace Marcus Ehning, one of the hottest candidates to represent his country at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. 

“This is really difficult to answer…,” Ehning says. “I will try to ride at the few international shows that will actually take place during the winter season here in Europe. As many of my horses are a bit older, I don’t see a point in going to any of the tours to jump around in 2* or 3* classes. I can do a 2* or 3* show once in a while to keep them going, but not a whole tour – it makes no sense. I also don’t plan on going to Wellington for the Winter Equestrian Festival, since I think that will be too expensive. While I will show the more experienced horses every now and then when the opportunity is there, the younger horses I have will be competing in national classes in Germany this winter.”

“Of course, this is a lost time for some horses,” Ehning continues.

Cornado NRW and Misanto Pret A Tout are both 17 now, and this year has just disappeared for them….

“My hopes are up for Geneva though. If the organisers manage to pull through, I think we will have fresh and happy horses competing,” Ehning says. “I also have hopes up for some World Cup qualifications during the winter, since I – as every year – am hoping to ride the World Cup Final.”

“Then I can only hope for the outdoor season to run from April, so that we will have more shows that will allow us to jump continuously at 1.50/1.60m level. That will be our chance to build up for the Olympic Games in August and for the Europeans in September. These two events are of course my main goals for 2021. I think it is great that they decided to run the Europeans after all, and that they chose Riesenbeck International to organise it."

“The main difference for the horses is that when they go to the shows more often than what is the case now, they get condition and power in a way that you can’t really recreate at home,” Ehning explains. “However, with the possibility of some big events coming up it is important to try to keep the horses going – in condition and motivated – even though we don’t know if or when there will be a show.”


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