Tuesday, 5. December 2023

Local matador, Paula Pahl, is competing at the Aachen Jumping Youngstars

Enjoy the Christmas market atmosphere and at the same time experience top equestrian sport live – that is what the Aachen Jumping Youngstars is all about. When the participants compete against each other for the Indoor Champion titles presented by UVEX from December 7th-10th at the grounds of the CHIO Aachen CAMPUS, Paula Pahl from Jülich, Rhineland, will also be taking part.

This time the outward journey is just a stone’s throw away. Whereas Paula Pahl attends shows all over Europe throughout the year, this coming weekend, the 16-year-old and her horses don’t even have to travel 30 kilometres to the Aachener Soers. “Being able to compete in this truly unique atmosphere is something very special every year, over and over,” the young show-jumper explained before her home game in the festively decorated Albert-Vahle Arena, where she will no doubt take an awestruck look at the legendary Main Stadium. This summer she was already able to gain some initial experience on the Holy Grass in the NetAachen-Prize during the CHIO Aachen. Paula Pahl associates wonderful memories with that experience and of course with the Aachen Jumping Youngstars. Because the rider from Rhineland already found out in 2021 what it feels like to ride to victory at the show for young talents, which traditionally has a star-studded cast. Back then she was crowned Indoor Champion of the Children’s age group. This year she will be competing in the Juniors classification with her sports partner, Chin Ziano. “He is a horse with excellent scope,” Paula Pahl commented about the 11-year-old gelding, in whom she places great trust. “I can always be totally sure that he will carry me safely to the finish line.”

But Paula Pahl is not the only one currently making the final preparations for the Aachen Jumping Youngstars. Around 175 further aspiring young talents will travel to Aachen to battle it out from Thursday onwards for the title of Indoor Champion in four age groups, presented by UVEX – the best riders over the four days of the show. And the field of competitors promises sport at the highest level. With Brianne Beerbaum (Hanover), Maximiliane Fimpel and Colin Sorg from Baden-Württemberg and the two riders from Bavaria, Luise Konle and Jolie Marie Kühner, the gold-winning Children’s squad from this year’s European Championships will all be saddling their horses. Jolie Marie Kühner, the daughter of the show jumping star, Max Kühner, also secured herself the bronze medal in the individual classification at the Championships in Gorla Minore, Italy. And as the reigning German Champion in her age group, Brianne Beerbaum, who being the daughter of Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and Markus Beerbaum also comes from a famous family of riders, can look back on a dream season too. The many-time Bavarian Champion, Ava Ferch, who will be riding in both the Pony and Junior age groups also has famous parents. What’s more, the current German Champions of the Pony and Junior classifications, Finja Mayleen Neubauer (Westphalia) and Max Merschformann (Westphalia) are also on board. But Eva Kunkel, Lena Marie Zins, Sophie Burgtorf, Maggie Kehring and Viktor Skutecky, five members of the current year of the CHIO Aachen CAMPUS Programme of Excellence, will also be hoping to notch up a few victories and good placements. Hence, there is plenty of competition. Paula Pahl is not letting that fluster her. “If I manage to leave the ring with a smile on my face and my trainer is satisfied, I will have achieved my goal,” adding with a wink: “We’ll have to wait and see what the ultimate outcome is in the end.”

The show in the traditionally, festively decorated Albert-Vahle Arena is the crowning glory of the season for many riders, especially the final classes in the Prize of Firma Kelleter – “Ihr Generalunternehmer für den Innenausbau” , in the NetAachen-Prize, in the STAWAG-Prize and in the Grand Prix of the Aachener Bank eG. “Promoting the youth is of immense importance to us,” stated Birgit Rosenberg, the Head of Sport at the CHIO Aachen. “This is why we are delighted to be able to experience the best young athletes here live,” added the board member of the Aachen-Laurensberger Rennverein (ALRV), organisers of the event. A special tip: The Saturday of the show is the traditional family day with dog races, lead-rein classes, the CHIO mascot “Karli” and a visit from Santa. Admission is free of charge on all days. Anyone, who can’t be there in person, can watch all competitions live here on the website or on ClipMyHorse.TV Germany.

Photo: Alexander Marx

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