Hopes for the 2021 horse show go unfulfilled

The regulations and requirements are too high

Hopes were high, and planning was in full swing. In the past weeks and months, many ideas and concepts were played out but in the end all that remains is the knowledge that the International STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS Horse Show once again cannot be staged in 2021 in its regular form and in a way many equestrian fans would like.

“It was and is a difficult decision for us as organisers, but it simply can’t go ahead. We cannot ignore and fulfil the prevailing regulations and requirements, including the health and safety laws. The horse show is simply the biggest and most complex event in our ‘Hallenduo’,” says Andreas Kroll, the CEO of the in.Stuttgart Veranstaltungsgesellschaft. Additionally, the hoped-for vaccination herd immunity has not been achieved and the possible corona options with either the vaccinated-recovered-tested or the vaccinated-recovered rule still means it is compulsory to wear European FFP2 masks.

At a joint meeting, the project management, the horse show directors and the executive directors weighed up all the pros and cons at the start of the week. After intensive consultations they decided to cancel the STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS. “Our aim was to stage the horse show in the way everybody is used to with all the classes. An abbreviated solution with a watered-down programme was never an alternative for us,” stresses Kroll and “asks all the equestrian fans and naturally the riders for their understanding. We would have loved to have had presented the successful Olympic and European champions and medal winners to our crowd in Stuttgart, but it’s still not something we can do this year.”

“It’s a great pity for equestrianism and the World Cup season,” says horse show director Kai Huttrop-Hage in unison with his co-directors when putting the situation in a nutshell. It was something Andreas Krieg had unfortunately feared after taking a look at the corona requirements in place for the CHIO show in Aachen – compulsory wearing of masks, the vaccinated, recovered and tested rule and only a third of the spectators able to attend the outdoor venue. “Stuttgart is however an indoor horse show and it’s not so easy to keep out of each other’s way,” says Krieg.

“For me, it feels like being in a state of shock.” Carsten Rotermund, who recently worked at the European Championship in Riesenbeck, cannot imagine being able to stage the Stuttgart horse show in full. “Not only the restrictions for the visitors played a part in making the decision, organisational issues were also key,” says Rotermund.

Behind the scenes at the horse show with all the stables, the organisational infrastructure, the media centre, the course building services, the entries desk and a whole lot more cannot be put into place to meet the social distancing rules. There is very little space as over 1,000 people work over the five days of the horse show. “We have to simply recognise all the details and have, as organisers, a big responsibility towards all the people that have a role to play at the event,” says the project lead Claus Lederer. “Permanent equestrian facilities generally have far more space and can be expanded. In an indoor venue, we come up against limitations in many areas that make it impossible for us to comply with health and safety regulations to the necessary degree. The risk of a positive corona case during the horse show is something we can’t and don’t want to take. And the incidence rate has been increasing for weeks now.”

What now remains is the hope for the coming year when the 36th International STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS Horse Show will reconcile equestrian fans from 9 to 13 November 2022. The organisers are in regular contact with the International Equestrian Federation (FEI), the German Equestrian Association (FN) and the regional Baden-Württemberg Equestrian Association and the cancellation has been agreed and accepted by everyone. Stuttgart will retain its 5-star status and will continue to host the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ qualifier at the horse show. “It was and is very important for us,” agrees all the stakeholders.

News 2020

No FEI World Cup 2020 in Stuttgart – “We can’t hold the horse show in these conditions”

After 35 years, there will be no international horse show this year in Stuttgart’s Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle. After many months of planning and intensive discussions about alternative concepts in the face of the corona pandemic, it is now final that the 36th STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS from 11 to 15 November 2020 has to be cancelled. “The indoor horse show cannot be staged in the current corona conditions,” stresses Andreas Kroll, the CEO of the organisers, the in.Stuttgart Veranstaltungsgesellschaft. “We ask for the understanding of all the equestrian fans and naturally the riders. For a long time, we were hoping there would be a weakening of the corona pandemic, but after the latest reports, it appears we’re a long way off.”

The health of humans and animals is the uppermost priority which is why one has decided to take this course of action jointly with the horse show directors, the sponsors and partners. Though in the meantime there has been some, mainly without spectators, smaller and mid-sized outdoor horse shows, they however cannot be compared to a 5-star show in an indoor arena. The effort needed to stage the horse show in the “Hallenduo” complex in NeckarPark is enormous. From the competition in-field to the stables as well as the shopping areas and the media center, everything has to be built specially for the show.

As the organiser and operator of the indoor arena, a point in time has now been reached in which it can be safely said that holding the event is not financially viable. Simultaneously the safety and wellbeing of everybody involved in the running of the horse show as well as the visitors cannot be fully guaranteed. Kroll: “Without the spectators and the wonderful atmosphere, it simply makes no sense. The corona ordinance’s restrictions will remain in force until the end of October and momentarily we can’t assume that much will change up until the middle of November.”

The focus is now on next year when the 36th International STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS Horse Show is due to be held from 10 to 14 November 2021. One is in regular contact with the International Equestrian Federation, the German Equestrian Federation (FN) and the regional Baden-Württemberg Equestrian Association and this year’s cancellation has been agreed and accepted at all three levels. This also applies to the final classes for the BW-Bank Indoor Championship, the iWest Cup, the Nürnberger Burg-Pokal or the Piaff-Förderpreis. Together with their final classes, they should take place as usual in the coming year in the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle.

News 2019

Stuttgart – The Belgian Pieter Devos was very happy with his successful title defence in the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle on Sunday afternoon. Riding the same horse as last year – the 14-year old Dutch gelding Apart – in the final class of the 35th International STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS Horse Show, he won the Grand Prix of Stuttgart with MERCEDES-BENZ, WALTER solar and BW-BANK in front of a 7,200...

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Stuttgart – The 35th International STUTTGART GERMAN MASTERS once again produced “excellent top class equestrianism with surprises and a fantastic atmosphere in the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle,” said Andreas Kroll, CEO of the event organisers, the in.Stuttgart Veranstaltungsgesellschaft. As for surprises, there were more than a few in the past days. For instance, Cathal Daniels and Padraig McCarthy...

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