Friday, 15. December 2023

The Niebergs impress with their live training at the CHIO Aachen CAMPUS

They are currently one of the most successful families around the showgrounds of this world: The Olympic gold medallist, World and European Champion, Lars Nieberg and his son, Gerrit. In the scope of the Masterclass of the CHIO Aachen CAMPUS the pair impressively and passionately demonstrated the reason for this.

The evening kicked off with thunderous applause: The sensational winning round of Gerrit Nieberg and his Ben in the Rolex Grand Prix at the CHIO Aachen 2022 offered the perfect prelude to the evening, which over 500 spectators were allowed to experience in the festively decorated Albert-Vahle Arena. “That moment really was unforgettable and very special for me and my family,” Gerrit Nieberg said, looking back on the highlight of his young career so far.” The three and a half hour programme that followed this video clip was very special too: In the course of the evening, together the father and son trained five riders with their horses, divided up into the theme blocks “Young Horses”, “Amateur Riders” and “On the way to top competition sport”. The spectrum of the horses taking part ranged from a four-year-old youngster through to the eight-year-old mare, Servus Z, which already competes highly successfully at advanced level under the saddle of the European Champion of the Children’s classification, Tony Stormanns. As a special treat for the spectators, Gerrit Nieberg had also brought two of his own aspiring young horses with him to Aachen: the six-year-old Dallas VDL son, Danger, and the seven-year-old Kannan descendent, Kansas City. Both of whom are outstanding youngsters that are being carefully prepared for their tasks in top competition sport.

But what is the secret of the daily training at Gut Berl? A question that was impressively answered during the hosted live training. Because as varied and diversified as the sessions might have been, one thing in particular was at the top of the list in each session: The harmony between the rider and the horse. To ensure this Lars Nieberg demonstrated again and again how important solid groundwork is and which fine techniques they apply to prepare horses of different performance levels perfectly for the demands of show jumping courses. “It is often just small things that can indeed have a huge impact,” is how the 60-year-old explained his approach. And that these can bring about positive changes immediately, was particularly noticeably by the amateur rider, Anna Rennings and her Hanoverian-bred Cinnamon. Whereas the 9-year-old gelding was not consistently on the bit at the beginning of the session, this decisively improved during the warm-up phase after doing several transitions and tempo changes. Progress that had a positive effect during the subsequent course jumping section. No wonder the 22-year-old not only left the area to the appreciative applause of the spectators, but also with a proud grin on her face. “That really was great fun,” an overjoyed Anna Rennings said about the effective tips of the team Olympic gold medallist and added highly-motivated: “We will try to continue working on this over the winter.”

But the evening not only provided many valuable training trips, but also the opportunity to get to know the Nieberg family better. In an interview with Karolin Leszinski, who was the host of the evening, the Niebergs took a look at Lars’ career and to Gerrit’s first riding experiences and gave their opinions on current themes to do with the sport. In the final autograph session, the duo not only pulled out their pens, they also answered individual questions of the spectators and even posed for the odd selfie. A really educational evening, which was brought to a pleasant close with a mug of cocoa and glühwein in the festively decorated Christmas village – a fantastic conclusion to the CAMPUS year 2023.

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