A Look At Equestrian Show Jumping – The Sport For The Rich
Equestrian show jumping is a sport for the noble and the brave hearted, but taking the risky step of participating in the sport is indeed a worthwhile experience.
Regarded as the ‘sport for the most wealthy,’ many world richest men and women are courting for the love of equestrian show jumping.
Equestrian show jumping is not just a sport for recreation or leisure but also attracts cash prizes. Millions of dollars and global recognition await the participants who can showcase bravery in the competitions.
Gates’ daughter, Jennifer, is one of those who have joined the league of show jumping competitors, as well as Georgina Bloomberg (Michael Bloomberg’s daughter), Eve Jobs (late Steve Jobs’ daughter) and Jessica Springsteen (Bruce Springsteen’s daughter), as well as Hannah Selleck (Tom Selleck’s daughter). However, show jumping is still in oblivion to the public in spite of its high-profile status.
Let us dive into the world of equestrian show jumping, the history, background and other notable points to know about the elitist sport. The link between show jumping and wealth didn’t just start today. It’s been in existence since centuries ago and has been affiliated with royal families.
The nature of the sport can only accommodate the wealthy and high-placed people in the society. In the modern day, the horses needed for the height jumping cost not less than thousands of dollars to purchase and horse maintenance expenses can run into thousands of dollars every month.
Showjumping also has stipulated practices that participants must regularly observe, such as how to tame the horse (obedience and acceptance of the rider by the horse; in order words, the harmony between the horse and its rider), show jumping and eventing.
The two wealthy ladies who are active competitors in the show jumping sport, Eve Jobs and Jennifer Gates own their private estates which are barely a mile apart in the same city of Florida, precisely the town of Wellington, where the Equestrian Festival is usually held every year during winter. Close sources to the two nobles hinted that their individual estates are symbols of the battle for honor and supremacy.
The latest rankings as shown by the US Equestrian Foundation revealed that Jennifer Gates, Jessica Springsteen and Eve Jobs are on the list of the top 30 show jumping women nationwide, while Jessica Springsteen and Georgina Bloomberg are doing excellently at international competitions as the U.S representatives.
In 1912, equestrian show jumping was featured among the sports played at the Summer Olympics and has remained a constant fixture since then.
Among the famous competitors in the 1930s was John Wofford who represented the U.S at Los Angeles Olympics in 1932.
Show jumping has rules, and it’s very methodical. During the competition, riders will sit on their horses and navigate the beast through a tight route, sailing through several hurdles of various heights and degrees while bounded by a strictly fixed time limit.
Riders must have it in mind that every route has its own distinctive feature so they must be very conscious of their environments and tame their horses to slow down on their strides and perspectives when moving forward.
There is punishment attached to some rules if they are not observed diligently. When the rider’s horse is reluctant to jump through a hurdle, collapses a barrier, drops on its limbs in the middle of the competition or lands directly on a pool of water jump.
The champion will be determined by her ability to finish her course with little or no penalties to her name. The unique attire for show jumping is a combination of shield helmets, jackets, jodhpurs, boots, and breeches.
Globally, show jumping is recognized and widely accepted, and this has given many participants the opportunity to travel worldwide. Countries like Qatar, Monaco, Paris, Doha and Mexico City are among the hosts of this noble sport. The top prizes placed on competitions may run into hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Interestingly, as challenging as show jumping sounds, it’s a very risky game that can lead to casualties. For instance, the rider and her horse can have an accident if they both crash to the ground in case one or both of them miscalculated their course of obstacles, therefore getting badly injured in the process.
Nevertheless, the ardent followers of show jumping are over-looking this dark side of the sport; they rather choose to focus on the bright side. As described by Ainslie Sheridan, a writer of novels on the competition, show jumping is an embodiment of love, talent, trustworthiness, and discipline. The dangerous aspect of it makes it even more endearing and creative, he added
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