Showjumping’s Global Champions Tour is offering record prize money of €9 million ($US12m) this season, with the Shanghai leg putting up $US2 million.
The Longines-sponsored tour includes 14 events and the prize pot will mean a bonus of nearly €1 million to be split among the top 18 riders at the final leg in Qatar in November.
2013 Longines Global Champions Tour Champion and World No.1 Scott Brash was the highest earning rider last season. He took home an impressive €634,000 in rewards for his performances on the Tour, with his Olympic Gold medal-winner Hello Sanctos. Overall, 2011 and 2012 Champion Edwina Tops-Alexander is currently the highest earning rider in the history of the circuit with more than €2.4 million in prize money to her name.
Longines Global Champions Tour President Jan Tops said the calibre of competition intensifies each season, ensuring the highest level of sport at every event. “Our goal is always to raise the bar in show jumping and deliver the best possible competition for our fans, sponsors and the media.”
The top eight highest earning riders on the Tour, including Christian Ahlmann, Ludger Beerbaum and Rolf-Göran Bengtsson, have each won over €1 million since the series began in 2006. This year elite riders including the USA’s Laura Kraut and Dutch Olympic star Gerco Schröder are expected to leap over the €1 million mark.
Last season each grand prix was won by a different rider. This year the season premiere is in Antwerp (April 24-27).