The NetAachen-Prize goes to Thibault Philippaerts and Belgium
The Belgian Nations’ Cup riders dominated the second competition of the NetAachen-Prize, the Young Riders jumping competition with a jump-off.
The Young Riders opened the final day at the CHIO Aachen 2023 with the NetAachen-Prize. The first national anthem that rang out today, was the Belgian anthem, namely for Thibault Philippaerts and his just eight-year-old, Kannan son, Pompidou van het Kuilenhof. The 21-year-old rider jumped clear in 38.11 seconds, pushing his fellow countryman Thibeau Spits back into second place. The latter had saddled the chic Zangersheide-bred stallion, Calvino II de Nyze Z by Calvaro Z and the pair crossed the finish line in 40.76 seconds. The reigning European Champion of the Juniors from Finland, Jone Illi, came third. However, he didn’t compete with his European Championship horse, Eolita L, but instead with the also Finnish-bred gelding, Celtas Quillian by Uriko. The just 15-year-old (!) took 41.97 to master his first jump-off at the Aachener Soers.
Thibault is the second youngest of the four Philippaerts brothers. He reported that he had ridden in the Deutsche Bank Stadium once during the COVID pandemic, but that Friday and today was the first time he’d competed in the Main Stadium. “I am very happy!,” he said overjoyed. “It is a young horse and still very inexperienced. I am really happy to have won in the big arena of Aachen! That’ always been one of my dreams.”
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