Richard Vogel wins the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe

The Course Designer, Frank Rothenberger, prophesied it: Richard Vogel is going to be the man to beat in the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe. How right he was.

In line with the tenth anniversary of the partnership between the CHIO Aachen and Turkish Airlines, it was Richard Vogel, who left his fellow competitors trailing behind in the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe 2024. Twelve of the 45 pairs had reached the jump-off, including seven from Germany. Vogel was already extremely successful at the CHIO Aachen last year. And in four competitions so far this year he already rode to victory in one and came twice three times. After his triumph earlier this morning he joked that he wanted to continue his series of top placings, but added immediately that it would hardly be possible. And yet he has now added a further victory to his list of top placings after winning the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe. His fantastic, ten-year old Chaman son, Cepano Baloubet, carried him to victory.


Vogel and Cepano Baloubet were the ninth pair in the jump-off. Up until then McLain Ward (USA) and Callas were in the lead after a perfect round. When Vogel entered the ring, the spectators started to clap rhythmically and cheered him on. It wasn’t hard to guess who was the crowd’s favourite on Wednesday evening. And Vogel’s fans weren’t disappointed. From the first fence onwards, the man who comes from Baden-Württemberg took advantage of the natural speed and agility of his chestnut gelding. The clock stopped at 42.44 seconds, an incredible 1.62 seconds faster than Ward and Callas, although no one would have believed their time could be beaten. Thunderous applause broke out and on the way to the exit Richard Vogel kept pointing at his four-legged partner as if to say: “He deserves the applause”.


Later Vogel confirmed: “I was very happy with how Cepano jumped. He really fought for me today. I knew from last year, when he came second in the Prize of NRW and the Allianz-Prize that he feels at home in the ring. Some horses grow when they enter the arena at the Soers, whereas others are intimidated. He belongs to those, who grow, and I sensed that today.” Cepano actually saved him slightly today. “I watched McLain and I know that when he is front he is difficult to beat. That put me under a bit of extra pressure. I was almost slightly too aggressive and didn’t ride everything as perfectly as I had planned. And he helped me out today.”


The crowd also contributed towards Cepano’s top form, Vogel stated, “The atmosphere in this class with the floodlights and all the spectators is simply incredible. This is the first class where all the riders want to be in best form. There is a special atmosphere even in the warm-up area. And when you ride into the ring, it is even more intense. That makes us fly even higher.”


McLain Ward came second with a time of 44.06 seconds. Fun fact: While Vogel was spending the winter in Wellington, he trained with McLain Ward. The latter said after this evening: “There is nothing I could possibly still teach him.” Vogel’s plans for the rest of the week are pretty obvious: to continue this series of success. “I hope that wasn’t the last rosette we collect here,” he said modestly. Ward on the other hand sounded very decisive regarding his plans for the rest of the week: “That Richie comes second.”


Jana Wargers finished third with the Oldenburg-bred mare, Dorette. She took just one hundredths of a second longer to cross the finish line compared to Ward and Callas. She was totally happy and not at all disappointed. “We have the two fastest riders here and they were in the lead. I knew it was going to be difficult. Furthermore this is the horse (Dorette) I am riding in the Grand Prix on Sunday. So, of course I did try, but I didn’t want to overdo it.”


The CHIO Aachen Head of Sport, Birgit Rosenberg, confirmed the superb atmosphere: “In spite of the rain and the windy weather, there was a fantastic atmosphere and the riders confirmed that it was super sport here today. I am very much looking forward to the rest of show and think it got off to a super start today.”

The photo shows Richard Vogel, the winner of the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe, together with Murat Gür, General Manager of the Düsseldorf and Cologne bases, and ALRV President Stefanie Peters. Photo: Franziska Sack

The photo shows Richard Vogel, the winner of the Turkish Airlines-Prize of Europe, together with Murat Gür, General Manager of the Düsseldorf and Cologne bases, and ALRV President Stefanie Peters. Photo: Franziska Sack