Puissance back again for Royal Windsor Horse Show

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Guy Williams and Mr Blue Sky in action at last year's Royal Windsor Horse Show.
Guy Williams and Mr Blue Sky in action at last year’s Royal Windsor Horse Show. © RWHS

The high-jumping competition at last year’s Royal Windsor Horse Show was so popular with spectators that organisers are bringing the event back again this year.

After a 12-year hiatus, the Puissance was reintroduced to the show last year, and it proved a hit with Windsor’s crowds. It will be held once again against the impressive backdrop of Windsor Castle on the opening day of the CSI5* show, which runs from May 12 to 15.

The Puissance dates back more than 100 years and is one of the most exhilarating competitions in the show jumping discipline. Aptly named after the French word for ‘Power’, The Puissance is the ultimate demonstration of strength, precision and trust between horse and rider. The current world record for the Puissance is held by Germany’s Franke Sloothaak. He cleared 2.40m at Chaudfontaine, Belgium in 1991 with his horse Optiebeurs Golo.

The competition consists of up to five rounds, and with each round bricks are added to the wall to increase its height. Last year’s Royal Windsor Horse Show Puissance was a true spectacle, and was jointly won by Guy Williams and Joseph Stockdale, who both cleared an impressive 2.10m.

Williams rode his trusted partner Mr Blue Sky; often referred to as the most talented Puissance horse of his generation. With numerous successes at competitions such as the London International Horse Show, the duo were the clear favourites when they entered the arena. But Stockdale, the youngest competitor in the class, pulled out a fantastic performance on Florida VDL – a horse he had never competed on before. After a tense final round, the two competitors’ magnificent performances in front of the Windsor crowd meant the 2021 top prize was split.

Show Director Simon Brooks‐Ward said organisers were pleased to welcome back the event after its success last year. “The class is always such a crowd pleaser and adds so much excitement to the show. It is always so impressive to see the bravery and skill that the horses and riders have when jumping the Puissance wall.”

Entries for the showjumping classes close on March 8. Puissance entries are by invitation only, but those interested in entering can contact entries@hpower.co.uk.

 

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