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The Next Generation – Elisa Broz: “The World Cup Final was overwhelming, challenging and scary”

Wednesday, 18 October 2023
The Next Generation

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ Elisa Broz was the youngest competitor at this year's Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Final in Omaha, riding Kardenta van’t Meerhof. All photos © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.


Text © World of Showjumping



Over the past year, 19-year-old Elisa Broz has proved that she is a force to be reckoned with. Earlier this year, she was the youngest competitor at the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Final in Omaha – qualifying after finishing 3rd in Las Vegas and 4th in Sacramento. In February, Broz and her mare Kardenta van’t Meerhof won the CSI3* Premier Equestrian Grand Prix at Desert International Horse Park, and in May, the American rising star took the blue ribbon in the CSI2* Grand Prix in San Juan Capistrano with Tinkerbell. More recently, Broz finished 7th in the World Cup in Sacramento with Crispo R – collecting her first points in the North American League of the 2023/2024-season. 

“I started to ride when I was six, at a local yard near my house. I begged my parents for riding lessons,” Broz tells with a smile. “My mum rode, and while she was not sure about me starting, I managed to convince her. She wanted me to start at a local low-key place, which ended up being Cassie Belmont’s barn that over the years has grown much bigger than it was back then. I ended up training with Cassie for over 10 years; I did my first riding lesson with her and jumped my first 1.50m class with her as my trainer. As Cassie was more focused on equitation when I first started, I did that until I was 14 before I went into showjumping. I started from the love of horses and that is what still motivates me.” 

From Cassie to Cassio

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ Broz with her trainer Cassio Rivetti.

About 1.5 years ago, Broz started to train with Brazilian showjumper Cassio Rivetti. “Cassie’s barn was in Northern California, and I’m now based in San Diego with Cassio so it was quite a move. Since I have an amazing family that are really supporting me, it was a big step for me to move away from everything familiar,” Broz tells.

“Growing up training for Cassie, the focus was more on the riding and learning how to, whereas Cassio’s focus is more on improving the horses,” Broz says about the biggest different between her two trainers. “Both have taught me a lot and Cassio obviously still is."

“I had an amazing 1.20m horse, but it was Volstrups Cody (Carlos DZ x Corlando, breeder Pia Holländer and Henning Jensen) that brought me from the 1.20m to 1.45m classes and he was the one I jumped my first real big Grand Prix on,” Broz tells. “Cody is retired now and will spend his days on our farm in Watsonville. He is happy and sound and will always stay with us. I owe him a lot – he is such an angel, a true gentleman.”

“Currently, I have four horses to show. Kardenta van’t Meerhof (Cardento x Concorde, breeder Peter Verhelst) and Crispo R (Casall x San Patrignano Corrado, breeder Dr. Michael Rüping) are my main Grand Prix horses, then I have Tinkerbell (Chacco-Blue x Silvio I, breeder Gestüt Lewitz) for the two and three-star classes and Vivoucenta PS (Vivant x Chacco-Blue, breeder Gestüt Lewitz) that is eight years old.” 

An amazing experience

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ. "I just kind of went in there and hoped to ride my best and that was actually all I could really do,” Broz tells about her toughest show experience yet.

In April, Broz was the youngest participant at the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Final in Omaha. “It was such an amazing experience. I came to Omaha not really expecting anything and was just open to embrace the experience. It was amazing to be surrounded by some of the top riders in the world. I learned so much from watching them ride and obviously you learn a lot from being in the ring, jumping courses like that. To be honest, it was overwhelming, challenging and scary, but I trust my horse – I knew she could do it and I had Cassio there to help me. So, I just kind of went in there and hoped to ride my best and that was actually all I could really do.”

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ. Elisa Broz was not only the youngest US rider at the 2023 World Cup Final, she was the youngest finalist of all the competitors – aged 18 at the time.

Competing at the World Cup Final is a goal for many of the world’s best riders but there are few that manage to get there at such a young age as Broz. “For me it has been a lot about having the right horse at the right time,” Broz explains. “When we found out that I was potentially going to qualify for the final and since it was in the US, Cassio said it would be an experience that is unmatched to anything I had ever done and that I definitely should go. That I would learn, no matter what. I had the horse to do it and I kind of had to seize the opportunity when I got it.”  

It was the 13-year-old Kardenta van’t Meerhof that Broz partnered up with for the World Cup Final. “I bought her in the summer of 2021, from Sergio Alvarez Moya,” Broz tells. “I took my time with her to get to know her. Once I did, the relationship really blossomed. She is very quirky; she has a lot of personality, and I would describe her a little bit like a cat. When you get into her bubble and she doesn’t want you to, she will tell you. Other times she is really sweet and when she likes you, she is absolutely amazing. She really showed that in Omaha when she tried so hard for me, and I know that that is a result of the relationship I created with her.”

College and hopes

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ. "For the future, I’m hoping to be selected for a US Nations Cup team – hopefully that will come with time,” Broz says.

Broz graduated from high school last year and started college this fall, so her gap year is now over. “I look forward to college because for me it is important to have a well-rounded education and I will be studying business which will be helpful if I decide to go professional in the horse industry. I do plan to continue to ride, but I also know it will be a hard juggle to make it work,” Broz says.

“For the future, I’m hoping to be selected for a US Nations Cup team – hopefully that will come with time.”



18.10.2023 No reproduction of any of the content in this article will be accepted without a written permission, all rights reserved © World of If copyright violations occur, a penalty fee will apply. 

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