Having now completed a year of international coverage at Jumper Nation, we must admit a certain bias for one of the last shows of the year, the Olympia London International Horse Show. The incredible location, the festive holiday cheer, and the unbelievable lineup of competitors and exhibitionists make for such a unique spectacle, and we’re sorry to see it end.
Fortunately, the coverage from the long week of competition just keeps rolling in, and we’re pleased as punch to share a few of the best must-see moments from the show. Here’s our own personal countdown of the best of Olympia:
10. Possibly the best crowd in Equestrian Sports. They were rowdy, enthusiastic, and definitely a home field advantage. Show Jumping meets Manchester United. Also, these three magic words: STANDING ROOM ONLY.
9. The Shetland Grand National. You’ve got to appreciate the plucky little start to finish win by this scrappy winning pair! Nothing in the world is as equal parts thrilling and adorable as steeplechasing shetlands.
8. Bertram Allen’s Win in the Christmas Masters Jump-Off vs. Malin Baryard-Johnsson. These two were riding for their lives in this class, and getting the side by side comparison of the jump-off is all too sweet a gift. Bertie edged Malin with a final time of 24.79 to her 25.32. Great Britain’s Laura Renwick came in third with a jump-off time of 26.23 plus a rail down.
7. This adorable little dude who adores the lusitanos, and his mom for including excellent highlights of everything:
6. Scott Brash’s victory in the FEI World Cup Qualifier in front of a home crowd:
5. Flat Jockeys vs. Jump Jockeys over fences. This awesome and hilarious competition between steeplechasers and flat racing jockeys is a crowd favorite that includes some exceptionally well-known faces in the UK such as Victoria Pendleton and Krankie Dettori, and best of all is done in honor of a great cause: raising money for the Injured Jockeys Fund. These guys have absolutely no fear of death.
4. Laura Renwick’s jump-off win in the Father Christmas Stakes. Another home-field advantage victory in London, and all thanks to a breathtaking jump-off! Laura and Con Chilli beat fellow Brit Will Funnell 43.88 to his 44.31 aboard Billy Angelo. Anthony Condon of Ireland was third.
3. The Cayenne Puissance. Olympia Puissance Rookies Holly Smith and Christopher Megahey tied for the win after five rounds at seven feet, 1 inch!
2. This extremely invested toddler in Olympia show jumping. #youarethefuture
1.And of course, our number one must cross the barn aisle and acknowledge the retirement of Dressage world champion and two-time gold medalist Valegro. Happy pastures, friend!
Go Olympia, and Go Jumping!