Known for its famous Roman Tower of Hercules or Torre de Hércules lighthouse – a UNESCO World Heritage site thought to have been in continuous use since perhaps the 2nd century AD, and pictured above with a statue of the Celtic King Breogan – La Coruña is located in the Galician region of Spain, which borders northern Portugal and whose capital is Santiago de Compostela, the final destination for the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.
From December 7–9, 41 riders and 81 horses from 15 nations are coming to the city’s Casas Novas Equestrian Centre as the Western European World Cup circuit winds its way across the continent. Previous stops have taken place in Oslo, Helsinki, Verona, Lyon, Stuttgart and Madrid, with others to follow in London, Mechelen, Basel, Leipzig, Amsterdam and Bordeaux.
Among the group of 5* competitors in Spain this year are 2017 La Coruña Grand Prix winner Edwina Tops-Alexander, who is also coming off a triumph with her mount California in last weekend’s CSI5* Longines Grand Prix at the Paris Longines Masters. The Australian is accompanied in Spain by two other horses, Vinchester and Cinsey. And her rivals from Great Britain this time are Laura Renwick, Michael Whitaker and Guy Williams, while Ireland is represented by Anthony Condon, Michael Duffy, Michael G Duffy and Denis Lynch, third in Paris riding The Sinnner.
Some of the other athletes in contention this weekend include the Netherlands’ Maikel Van Der Vleuten, Austria’s Max Kühner, Belgium’s Olivier Philippaerts, Brazil’s Yuri Mansur, France’s Julien Epaillard, Germany’s Ludger Beerbaum, Italy’s Alberto Zorzi, Switzerland’s Jane Richard Philips and the home nation’s Eduardo Alvarez Aznar. The full list is here.
With the CHI Geneva also taking place this weekend, many other show jumping horses and riders are about competing 1,500 kilometres to the northwest in Switzerland, including current Western European World Cup leader Steve Guerdat (58 points), already safely in possession of one of the league’s 18 places (plus extras for non-European residents of the continent who finish among the top 18 in the regional standings) in the Final. Click here for the current standings.
Event organizers say they are expecting a full house for this 37th edition of the CSI La Coruña after all the free invitations to the event were snapped up by the public, with spectators also able to watch the Santi Serra equestrian show on Friday evening among other activities at the event.