This Thursday I had the possibility to go with my trainers to Warendorf to see the Bundeschampionat, the national championships for young horses. As I had never been, I was really looking forward to going, and I was not disappointed!
We mostly watched the qualification class for the 5-year-olds:
Holga Finken and Domenikus
Ann-Christin Wienkamp and Revolverheld, a full-brother to the Grand Prix stallion Rock Forever
Anna-Sophie Fiebelkorn and Royal Ascot
Beatrice Buchwald and Lord Carnaby
Sandra Frieling and Don Noblesse
All horses go through a bit check prior to their start, in addition the thightness of the noseband is controlled.
Claudia Rüscher and Quam Libet
Dorothee Schneider, who won silver in London together with the rest of the German team
Don Darius, a Hanovarian stallion by Don Frederico, ridden by Mike Habermann, representing the State Stud in Celle.
It's always interesting to see the exercise the Germans call "Zügel-aus-der-Hand-kauen-lassen", as it's very revealing. If your horse isn't in front of the leg or loose in the back, it would be very difficult to cover up during this stretching exercise.
Mike Habermann also rode another 5-year-old, the mare Red Pearl:
We followed Mike Habermann a bit closer, as the stallion that I've written about before, (Fonti's half-brother) is going to Adelheidsdorf to do his 70-day test next week, and hopefully Mike will be the one to ride him.
Some more impressions from Warendorf:
Someone joked about how much this rider had paid for the "brand" on her behind - maybe that is the solution, now that it looks like it'll be illegal to brand horses; let's brand the riders instead!
I didn't have much time to look at the ponies, who also have their own national championships this weekend. It always amazes me how good riders the pony-riders are, even though they are so young.
From the stands it was possible to see the competition arena and the warm-up at the same time. Here Ines Westendarp schools the 6-year-old Fürstenball OLD.
Eva Möller and High Five
Heiner Schiergen and Discovery
Klaus Schrader and Lord Poinsettie
Lord Poinsettie, a mighty, impressive horse that unfortunately fell somewhat on the forehand and seemed quite strong in the contact.
Some photos of the 4-year-olds:
Isabel Bache (from Norway, but based in Germany at Holga Finkens stable) and De Nino
Helen Langehanenberg and Damon's Satelite, one of the Damon Hill offspring she showed in Warendorf.
With Damon Hill she was a silver medalist with the team in London, 4th individually, with Damon's Satelite she won the 4-year-old division and with Damon's Delorange she won the 5-year-final with a record 9.8 score (that's 9.5 for trot, 10 for the walk, 9.5 for the canter, and two times 10 for the "thoroughness" and overall impression!)!
Geertje Hesse and Rock Star
And let's not forget the most important aspect of the BuCha for many people - the possibility to catch up with other horsepeople and gossip about horses, people and other horsepeople!