Longines Global Champions Tour - Longines Paris Eiffel Jumping - Christian Ahlmann, the Parisian

Christian Ahlmann & Ailina Christian Ahlmann & Ailina Photos by ©Sportfot

As said best by Gary Lineker, “In the end, it's always Germany who wins!” The statement rings true this weekend, as the incredible German won both Grand Prix in Paris. Today, it was with a mare, Ailina, who also belongs to the Zangersheide stud-farm.

This final afternoon began with the beautiful sight of the riders of the “Route Eiffel“, escorted by the prestigious Garde Républicaine, finishing their parade through Paris in the Champ De Mars arena. Surely it is an amazing memory for these amateur riders who were welcomed to the stage of the very best in the world. It was an exemplary moment for Longines Paris Eiffel Jumping, showing how it is an event unique to all others: open to all horses and riders of all disciplines.
Then at last came time for the weekend’s highly anticipated event: the Longines Eiffel Challenge, a Grand Prix with 1.55m obstacles. It was a class demonstrating great sport, and one 45-year-old Christian Ahlmann had laid claim to after walking the course when he said, “I’ll win this one too!” It wasn’t bravado, just a certain confidence in himself and his horse. By being one of the 14 to qualify for the jump-off out of start list of 44, he was already halfway to fulfilling his promise.
His course was a true testimony to his dressage work, for his fluid run of the track is what ultimately set him ahead of the very fast Egyptian Abdel Said and Jumpy van de Hermitage by more than 60 hundredths of a second, and Ben Maher aboard Don Vito by more than a second. He crossed the timers without ever giving the impression that he had to push the mare.
Said Ahlmann, “It was an amazing weekend. Sometimes you just get in that positive flow, which I did this weekend, and then anything can happen. So it feels really good. I'm proud of my horses and my team. We made it work.”
For the Longines Paris Eiffel Jumping, his win is also a mark in the history books, for no rider has ever before signed a double win in the LGCT Grand Prix and the Longines Eiffel Challenge. It’s even more impressive when recognizing that Ahlmann and Ailina are not familiar partners.
“This horse is usually ridden by Judy Ann [Melchior, Ahlmann’s wife]. She's normally riding 5* Grand Prix, and has placed many times, so she has a lot of experience. She knows it, she knows exactly what to do, and everybody could see that she is a really nice horse,” he said.
It was following his win yesterday, however, that Ahlmann admitted it wasn’t exactly his wife’s idea for him to compete this week after she gave birth to their second child on Monday. Perhaps in leaving so quickly to competition he risked his wife’s good graces, but he is surely returning to a happy family in Zangersheide after becoming the double winner of Paris!

Find all the information on www.pariseiffeljumping.com
Find all the results on www.longinestiming.com

By LGCT/LPEJ Press Release