Interview Reed Kessler – „I´d love to be number 1 one day!“

24. Sep 13 | 6:20 | By | Category: INTERNATIONAL NEWS, interviews


Interview Reed Kessler – „I´d love to be number 1 one day!“

Last year Reed Kessler was the surprise in the US show jumping team for the olympics. The young girl just went 18 – and won the US trials. Since London 2012 the name Reed Kessler won´t be missed at any big starting list. She was 10th in the 2013 World Cup in Gothenburg, won at several US shows, got into the Top 30 in the world. Now her goal is Normandy 2014 and her dream is being the number one in the world. Once again I had the chance to talk to this amazing 19 year old girl!


How did you experience the year 2013 so far? You went up really high in the world rankings and jumped from one success to the other…

It has been a great year! Being double clear in the Nations Cup in Wellington, 10th in the World Cup, second in Paris, and winning in Calgary have been some of the highlights.


What does it mean to you to be in the Top 30 in the World?  About one year ago you told me this is your big goal… Is there another one now to be even in the Top 20 or Top 10 now?

It is so exciting to be in the top 30. It really opens doors to go to the best shows which is a dream. Of course I would love to keep moving up and one day be number 1!


Just some days ago we were told you will ride the horse Cos I can from Irish rider Shane Breen from now on. How did you get this horse?

I’m very excited to have acquired Cosi. Cylana is my top horse and I aim her towards all the big championships so I really needed another top horse to support her so she can focus on what is important.


How would you characterize Cos I Can? What are his strengths and weaknesses? Does he fit well to the „Kessler Horses“?

Cosi is very careful with a lot of jump. He is a real winner. I don’t know him very well yet but he is a super horse and Shane really has done a fantastic job with him as he has had him almost his whole life.


What must a horse be like when it should attract you? What must a good show jumping horse be like in your opinion?

There are a lot of qualities a top horse needs. I think what is most important is suitability though. A horse can be great and a rider can be great but they need to be great together. I like horses with blood and scope. Carefulness is important too of course as well as soundness. I think it is also really important the horse’s ability to learn. You can take on a horse with some weaknesses if you think it has the ability to learn.


Are the WEG Normandy 2014 already in your mind? How will the US qualification for this look like?

Of course I am aiming for the WEG. There will be no more trials which I think everyone is pretty happy about – Robert will mostly use our ranking list to create the short list and then similarly to before the Olympics in Hong Kong he will alternate different combinations on nations cup teams and pick the strongest at the moment.


We all know Cylana is your star horse, but how would you say Wolf S and Soraya develop after you did the summer season with them?

They are doing great! Wolf had to move up very fast as my other top horse Mika had a small injury that he is resting from after Calgary. He has done a great job moving up so fast into 5 star grand prix level. He has a little bit of a tricky mouth which I have spent a lot of time working on the flat but he has made a lot of progress. He has a lot of ability so I’m excited to see how he keeps growing. Soraya has been amazing, she has been top 3 at every show including Chantilly, Dublin, Valkenswaard, and Gijon. She loves the speed classes and she wants to win when she shows.


You seem to commute between the US and Europe all the time. Don´t you ever feel a bit of exhaustion because of all the travelling and just want to relax at home?

No not really. I’m quite young so I love to travel, see the world, meet new people, go to new shows, etc. I get quite bored when I’m in the same place too long which is why I’m not such a big fan of the show in Wellington which lasts over 12 weeks.


Maybe you could tell the people here a bit how your career started. When did you do your first competitions? What shows did you do as a teenager? What were your biggest wins?

I began riding when I was only 6 months old. My parents have been riding for over 35 years and my trainer Katie Prudent is also my godmother, so it is really in the family! My parents and I used to take care of our horses in our backyard before we had grooms so it has made us really close in our family and to the sport. I did the normal shows for juniors in America. I did pony hunters until I was 12, then equitation for a few years, junior jumpers, young riders, etc. I started doing FEI classes as soon as I was old enough which was when I was 15. Some of my biggest wins as a young rider were the Young Rider championship series in Florida, 3 times team and once individual gold medalist nationally, and winning the 2* Grand Prix of Paris when I was 16. Of course after that winning the olympic trials, going to the games, etc.


Do you have an idol among the riders? If yes, why this person?

I have a few. I really admire Beezie Madden. She also trained with Katie Prudent when she was younger so I really idolize her because she has gone through nearly the same program as me so maybe in a few years if I’m lucky I can have a career like hers. Also Mclain Ward, another really American style rider. He is really disciplined and strategic in everything he does, which I admire. Lastly, Penelope Leprevost, who I think almost all female riders admire. She is so stylish and elegant when she rides.


Which big shows do you plan for the fall and winter season?

I’m actually not sure yet after Barcelona. I will for sure keep a few horses in Europe to finish the year at Lyon, Stuttgart, Paris, and Geneva, but between Barcelona and Lyon I’m not sure if I will do a few smaller shows here in Europe or if I will send a couple horses to the shows in America. I need to decide that soon! After Geneva I will go home and take a break before Florida.

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Fotograf “Jack Mancini”

Interview: Alexandra Koch

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