The history of equestrian sports is making a comeback at La Baule. Frédéric Cottier, Markus Fuchs, Jos Lansink and Eric Navet will again be in the saddle for the Jumping International de La Baule – Officiel de France (from 8th to 11th June 2023). These four monuments of equestrian sport will be renewing acquaintance for the first edition of the “Trophée des légendes Platinium presented by Les sports équestres Militaires”, a charity event for the benefit of the Ligue Française de Protection du Cheval horse protection association, contested in a final four format.
It is a journey back in time, a moment where many memories will be awakened in the minds of all lovers of equestrian sports. On the track in the arena of François André stadium, the four illustrious riders Frédéric Cottier, Markus Fuchs, Jos Lansink and Eric Navet will be back in the saddle for the “Platinium Sellier Legends’ Trophy presented by Military Equestrian Sports” on Saturday 10th June, at 07:00 pm (with a warm-up on Friday 9th June, at 07:05 pm). The four legends will measure themselves against each other in a final four format, a model wich was the highlight of the World Championships for many years.
“This new edition is an opportunity to put the spotlight on certain ‘old-timers’’’, notes Frédéric Cottier. “It is a challenge for us, because we have not ridden competitively for many years and are no longer 20 years old, especially on horses we are not familiar with. There is also the legendary final four format. This event is a show and a nod to the past in a friendly atmosphere”.
The spectators will be able to admire them on an eight-obstacle course (1.30 m) on each of the four horses provided by Military Equestrian Sports.
“Our presence in La Baule with our horses is particularly important to us,” explains Lieutenant-Colonel Maurice Payement, chief of Military Equestrian Sports. “It testifies to our desire to re-emerge on the show jumping scene. We want to show that we are still involved in competition, in eventing which is of course our discipline of preference, but also in show jumping”.
All these former champions have marked the history of the Jumping de La Baule, but also the history of equestrian sports. Seeing them back in the saddle will be a privilege.
The four legends
Frédéric Cottier (France, 69 years)
Frédéric Cottier, the Sporting Director of the Jumping International de La Baule since 2022 after spending many years as Track Manager, was world team champion in 1982, in Dublin, riding the fantastic Flambeau C who also allowed him to win a bronze medal, again in the team event, at the Seoul Olympic Games (in 1988) and the World Championships in Aachen (in 1986). He was also present at the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 1984, finishing in 7th place. At European level, the rider based in the Yvelines also won an individual bronze medal on Hickstead (in 1983) and a team silver medal in 1987.
Markus Fuchs (Switzerland, 67 years)
With five consecutive participations in the Olympic Games between 1988 and 2004, Markus Fuchs has been one of Switzerland’s leading riders. With a team silver medal at the Sydney Olympic Games riding Tinka’s Boy, the uncle of Martin Fuchs, currently number 3 in the world, also boasts a roll of honour that features a victory in the world cup final in 2001 in Gothenburg, a world championship bronze medal at the World Equestrian Games at The Hague (in 1994) and several individual European medals (notably a silver medal in 1999) as well as team medals.
Jos Lansink (Netherlands, 62 years)
With seven participations in the Olympic Games between 1988 and 2012, Jos Lansink is one of the world’s most experienced riders. He won team gold in 1992 in Barcelona with the Dutch squad and also boasts among his many medals a world title in 2006 in Aachen riding his fabulous grey steed Cumano, this time wearing Belgian colours, and a victory in the world cup final in 1994 with Libero H. At La Baule, he triumphed on the Grand Prix in 2009 riding Spender S, eleven years after a first success in the saddle on Carthago Z.
Éric Navet (France, 63 years)
His individual and team gold medals at the World Equestrian Games in Stochholm in 1990, riding Quito de Baussy, are part of the great history of French equestrian sports. Once again World Champion, this time in the team event, in 2002, riding Dollar du Mûrier (after an individual silver medal), Éric Navet, who made a special journey from his new home in the USA in order to come to La Baule, distinguished himself over a number of years on all terrains (with a team bronze medal at the 1992 Olympic Games, for example). He especially enjoyed success in La Baule, where he was crowned individual European Champion in 1991 (riding Quito de Baussy). His particularly attractive way of riding made him one of the most admired – and even sometimes worshipped – riders in the world.