Laura Kraut Looks to Maintain No.1 GCT Ranking in London

RELEASE: June 5, 2013
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: Global Champions Tour Press Office

London, England
- The best riders and horses in the world are already warming up at the stunning sand arena next to London’s Olympic Stadium for four days of the highest calibre show jumping. It is the first major sporting event at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park since the Games last summer.

The stage is set for the thrilling debut of the Longines Global Champions Tour in London with the €450,000 1m 60 Grand Prix highlight on Saturday night and a host of VIPs, celebrities and enthusiastic spectators to cheer on the athletes.

Show jumping’s most glamorous and richest championship series kicks off Thursday morning with two 5* classes in the afternoon, including the Massimo Dutti Prix, the 1m50 class sponsored by the chic fashion line. Longines Global Champions Tour President Jan Tops said: “It is very exciting to be at the start of our first-ever event in London. We are all anticipating some fantastic sport and entertainment over the next four days for the 4th leg of our championship series. The best riders in the world are here and we are all pleased to be here in this great horse country.”

The ranking battle will be fierce in the 4th leg of the 2013 championship series with US rider Laura Kraut fighting to hold on to her No1 position after the first three legs. Luciana Diniz of Portugal and Brazil’s Alvaro de Miranda will be piling on the pressure with Christian Ahlmann - 4th in the Longines Global Champions Tour ranking and current world No1 - adding to the heat of the fight.

Reigning champion Edwina Tops-Alexander, who was warming up her horses with UAE rider Sheikh Shakboot bin Nahyan Al Nahyan and Saudi rider Kamal Bahamdan this morning under bright blue skies in London, will be aiming to move up the ranking from her 7th place so far in the season. British rider Michael Whitaker, whose brother John is also competing, will be fired up to move up the ranking and into the top 10 for his current 18th place.

The contest will be intense as the riders and horses transfer from the big grass arenas at the previous three legs to the sand arena in London. The BBC will be broadcasting live from the showground on Saturday afternoon for the Grand Prix and the full broadcasting and livestreaming schedule can be found on

The Longines Global Champions Tour is the world's premier show jumping series with 13 events across the world in 2013. Events attract the Top 30 riders in the world with Australian riders Edwina Tops-Alexander winning both the 2011 and 2012 championships.
Events take place in stunning destinations from Monaco, Shanghai, Chantilly, Vienna, Lausanne, Cannes and London's Olympic Park this week.