Friday 24 November - 08h11 | Edited Press release

Europe V The USA- The First Riders Masters Cup Is Coming

On Saturday 2 December 2017,  EEM and European Equestrian Federation (EEF) will unveil an all-new world-class team show jumping competition: the Riders Masters Cup.

How It Will Work

How It Will Work - Europe V The USA- The First Riders Masters Cup Is Coming

McLain Ward, one of the high pwered US team
Credit : Sccopdyga

The new competition, branded EEM and supported by Longines as Founding Partner and Official Timekeeper, will offer a glittering display that combines performance and strategy, and pits the world’s two cradles of equestrian sport against one another for historical duels: Europe and the United States.

The first edition of the Riders Masters Cup will take place in the pristine setting offered by the Longines Masters of Paris. The re-match will come on 28 April 2018, at the Longines Masters of New York.

Audiences will be able to watch as two teams go head to head in spectacular, tightly-strategized duels, designed to challenge the riders in two very specific areas of skill: excellence and speed.
The first round will be scored according to A rules, where each mistake results in a technical penalty, awarding the crown to the perfection in motion achieved by the tandem teams, on a Grand Prix type course. The strategy devised by each team leader will thus of the essence: from riding order, to horse changes, choice of direct opponent and beyond, each decision will shift the team's fate.

So this is how it will work. The timed Table A race — each mistake results in a 4-point technical penalty — will reward perfection in motion, requiring riders to take the utmost care so and produce a flawless run.

– The Table C speed race — each error results in a 3-second penalty — will jolt the crowds with the dizzying speeds essential to victory.

Each duel won during the first round will garner one point for the team, while riders will be able to earn 2 points per win in the second round. The total number of points will be tallied up after each rider has completed both rounds, with victory going to the team with the highest number of points.

The team starting the first round will be determined by random draw. The opposing team will have its pick of which rider to line up to the latter, depending on the qualities of each horse — a strategic conundrum of crucial importance to emerge victorious.
Rider selection will in fact prove decisive in each duel’s outcome, and it will befall the losing team to announce first which rider it intends to put forth, giving a considerable advantage of the winning team, able to adjust its strategy accordingly. For the audience, this will mean guaranteed thrills as each rider comes forward and the team leaders choose their opponents, for what promises to be a concurrently engaging and spectacular display throughout the evening.

Who Is Riding

Who Is Riding - Europe V The USA- The First Riders Masters Cup Is Coming

Kevin Staut rides for Europe
Credit : Scoopdyga

For this first edition, the teams will be headed by two seasoned veterans:  Robert Ridland for the United States, and Philippe Guerdat for Europe. Each team, headed by a team leader selected for his track record and experience, will be made up of five riders. Carefully selected on tight criteria, they will fight to the finish to bring the trophy home. In other words, the tactical decision-making will start well before the competition opens, and have a crucial impact on the outcome! Each team will also have to let new show jumping talent shine, by including at least one rider under age 25 amongst them.

​The riders will be selected from the team lists which you can find here and which includes the current world top three, Kent Farrington, McLain Ward and Kevin Staut.  The will compete for a quarter of a million Euro in prize money over the two legs in Paris and New York.

Further reading...