Young Riders Academy graduates participants of 2015 program

Lugano, March 3 2016. Athenaeum Board in Geneva just graduated riders from second year young Riders Academy program.

“It's a great feeling to work with young people. This group is fantastic. They are passionate, they wanted to learn and exploited all the opportunities they have had” states Eleonora Ottaviani, member of the board and one of the founders of Young Riders Academy project.

Boy Adrian Van Gelderen (Belgium), Jonathan Gordon (Ireland), Maria Madenova (Russia),  Marcell Marschall (Germany), Margeaux Rocuet (France) and George Whitaker (UK) gathered in Lausanne and Geneva to complete their education route in Veterinary, Mental Coaching, Communication and Legal issues. “Special Guest of this session had been the International Course designer Louis Koninckx  who gave interesting guidelines to keep in mind while walking the course” added Sven Holmberg, sport manager of the program.

The team had been also welcomed at Fei Headquarters in Lausanne, where President Ingmar De Vos introduced to them key drivers for future growth in show jumping.

“ The Riders Academy project works and met the endorsement of Top Riders, Federations, Organizers and Sponsors” added Eleonora Ottaviani, “ thanks to the partnership with Franklin University in Switzerland, University of Uppsala in Sweden, EPFL Polytechnic of Lausanne, and key experts in show jumping,  it was possible to create a link between our sport and scientific and cultural environment. This approach, we hope, provided a  broader perspective and more complete knowledge to our young riders for their future”.

“Thanks to the mental coaching classes, I really learned how to deal with stressful moments!” Boy Adrian.

"Not only am I extremely grateful for all the knowledge that has been shared with us but I'm very proud to be a member of the Riders Academy family. The training I had received from Ludger Beerbaum was exactly as I had hoped for. Small tips make big differences!” Jonathan.

“The Academy for me was fantastic because of the training I received from Jos Lansink, different views of the sport and lot of new contacts that led  me going to Wellington Florida for the winter circuit”. 


“Mental coaching opened for me some things, which are helping to relax myself in stressful situation. Course designer's class told some interesting and needed  facts, which I can use during a competitions ... And veterinary is just great!” Maria.

In few months we will have the 2016 selection, and other five\ six riders will be nominated, this does not mean that the current team will be part of the past. Our plan is to continue to follow them,” commented Ottaviani, “ the enthusiasm and passion are high from all the people involved and the board have already new ideas for the future. The goal remains the same: to inspire and motivate young riders in respect of the horse and giving priority to sport. They are the future of our sport and sport should be for everyone”.

The young Riders Academy is a program conceived for European talented young show jumpers, under the patronage of the European Equestrian Federation (EEF), with the cooperation of the International Jumping Riders Club (IJRC) and the support of Rolex.

Founded in 2014 by Athenaeum, a non-profit association, the program will give talented riders between the ages of 18 and 23 the chance to get six months of training and boarding at a well-known professional stable. On top of that, professional education in communication, business and economics, veterinary and legal practice related to show jumping. The objective is to develop future champions as well as potential managers of this sport.

press release