Riders’ stories: Peder Fredricson, third in the 2022 Rolex IJRC Final

Peder Fredricson: 
A good rider is a balance between sensitivity and a strong personality.

A chat with the Swedish champion.

Peder, you are always up there among the best, on the podium also in this Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final. How important is this competition to you?

I think that it’s a fantastic format. It’s a very fun class to ride in because you ride together with your friends. There aren’t too many competitors, you meet before, you talk; everybody is discussing who is going to win and you talk about each other’s horses and, you know, it’s a really very nice class to ride in and I think it’s a good class to watch too.

It’s also one of the classes you work hard to be able to take part in. If you are competing in the Top 10 it means like you are really at the top of your sport, so I think it’s a dream for many riders to take part.

I think it is shows like this, like the Top 10 or the Grand Prix tomorrow, that push the sport forward. You know, everybody, all the best horses and all the best riders are here and we all try to do our very best and every time the rider that has won is going to push something a little bit forward and it is always going to be like this. I think that’s what’s so fantastic about our sport.



CHI Geneve 2022 of Geneve -  - Geneve, Palaexpo Geneve - 9 December 2022 - ph.Stefano Secchi/CHI Geneve 2022FREDRICSON_CatchMe_Geneve2022_20221209_SS3_7760.jpg Peder Fredricson with Catch Me Not S

How do you plan the year ahead for your horses in order to have the best performances and keep them safe, healthy and in a good shape?

One certainly has to have long-term plans for the horses as well as short-term plans too, but then above all you have to listen to the horses because it’s not always that they have the same plan as you have and so you have to adapt. So, you have to try to compete when the horses are in good shape, when they feel really good, and make the most of it. When they have times at which they are perhaps a bit tired or not jumping so well and so on, in an ideal world you have enough horses to give those horses a break. So that is how we try to work.

n Peder Fredricson with Catch Me Not S

Sweden is always at the top. Could one of the reasons be the quite perfect management of horses?

We try but it’s also very important, if you want to stay at the top, if you want to take part in the Top 10, to try to have enough horses so you can change them around a little bit. You can give them a rest in between shows and I think a very important ingredient in our sport is to make sure you always have enough horses, so you don’t have to ride on a day on which a horse doesn’t feel 100%.

x Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games - Peder Fredricson (SWE) All In Photo Copyright © FEI/EFE/Kai Försterling

Who is the Peder at the beginning of his career and who is the man of today?

Well, now I have many more wrinkles, that’s for sure. It’s a good question, you know. During the last ten years I have been part of top-level show jumping and it’s been amazing, traveling the world together with fantastic horses, meeting all these amazing other riders and friends and, you know, there is both a lot of pressure but a lot of joy. And I really enjoy it and I think that what we do shapes us. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without my horses and without these competitions and my colleagues and so on. It shapes you as a person and also teaches you that you need this kind of pressure to perform, it makes you develop, it’s that mix of many different things that I think creates your personality.

Which are the best qualities of a good rider?

I think that first of all riders must have a real passion for horses, and then of course you have to want to win and I think those two things combined are two very important aspects of a top rider. You have to be sensitive, able to listen to your horse, to get the best from your horse and you have to feel your horse and open your senses. Then, on the other hand, you also have to be tough and strong to be able to ride fast, you have to be brave to take the pressure, you have to be strong to run the business, ensure the money comes in and keep everybody happy. You have to be a strong person and so I think that the combination of these two personalities is rather unique to our sport, having a relationship with horses means you also have to be sensitive but you have to be strong. This combination is unique I think for riders.

Have you any advice to give young riders?

I would say that everything is possible even though sometimes it doesn’t feel like it. You know, we’ve all been through phases during which you feel as if all doors are shut and there is no way forward, but there is always a way forward, as long as you are passionate, willing to work hard, willing to learn, there is always a way forward for everybody.


h Rolex IJRC TOP 10 Final 2022 Podium