For the first time in Longines Global Champions Tour history Stockholm, Sweden will take its place on the global circuit, joining a powerful list of cities from around the world. With the first of three new additions to the Championship kicking off this week, all eyes will be on the world-famous riders who head to the Swedish capital city to take on the eighth leg of the 2019 series.
Photo: The LGCT Stockholm arena
From June 14th to 16th the elite horses and riders in show jumping will attend the LGCT of Stockholm at the City’s historic Olympic Stadium. The arena has a strong heritage in equestrian sport dating back over 100 years, including the Olympic Games in 1912 and 1956 and the World Equestrian Games in the summer of 1990.
Fittingly, spectators will see a whole host of Olympic athletes in action at the new venue this week, including five-time medallist Ludger Beerbaum (GER). Other big international names – many of whom have graced the Olympic stage – include Scott Brash (GBR), Michael Whitaker (GBR), Pius Schwizer (SUI), Edwina Tops-Alexander (AUS), Harrie Smolders (NED), Nicola Philippaerts (BEL), Marco Kutscher (GER), Nayel Nassar (EGY), Denis Lynch (IRL), Eduardo Alvarez Aznar (ESP), Cian O’Connor (IRL), Lorenzo de Luca (ITA), Marlon Zanotelli (BRA), Jur Vrieling (NED), Daniel Bluman (ISR) Leopold van Asten (NED), Geir Gulliksen (NOR), Ben Maher (GBR), Peder Fredricson (SWE), Malin Baryard-Johnsson (SWE), Henrik von Eckermann (SWE), Abdel Saïd (EGY), and Jérôme Guery (BEL).
In the overall 2019 LGCT rankings, former title holder Ben Maher (GBR) will be in the optimum position to slingshot his way up the order, with a chance of bettering his fifth spot while rider ahead of him take a short rest from the race. With ten results counting this season towards the final placings, Maher knows this weekend could be a crucial opportunity to bank a hefty haul towards his points tally should he deliver in Sweden’s capital city.
Home heroes will give local fans plenty to cheer about with many of the top Swedish show jumpers in action this week. Peder Fredricson (SWE) will lead the charge alongside Malin Baryard-Johnsson (SWE), Evelina Tovek (SWE) and Henrik von Eckermann (SWE) – all regulars on the Championship and looking for a win on home turf. But they’ll face tough opposition from many of the best international riders in the world, all vying for the inaugural LGCT Grand Prix of Stockholm win and a hotly contested ticket to the Longines Global Champions Tour Super Grand Prix at the GC Prague Playoffs.
Alongside the main competitions of LGCT and GCL, the concept of Stockholm Horse Week has been launched with a focus is to inspire, broaden and create a celebration with the people around equestrian sport.
With plenty of home heroes to cheer for, fans will be able to witness a true battle of the world’s best, with top international and local riders competing for the debut win in Sweden.