Current Top 5 Riders Ranked in the FEI Longines Jumping
1. Kent Farrington
PC: Kent Farrington Facebook
Currently, Farrington is considered one of the best riders in the world, as he holds the number one spot in the world show jumping rankings. Kent first took an interest in horseback riding at the age of eight. During his junior years he won the Washington International Equitation Medal and the Eiser/Pessoa National Equitation Medal Finals. At the age of eighteen, Kent became a gold medalist at the 1999 North American Young Riders International Competition. Later in 1999, he started working with British Olympian Tim Grubb, and after a few years began working with U.S. Olympian Leslie Howard. This summer Kent Farrington and his horse Gazelle, his eleven-year-old bay mare who is ranked 6th with FEI, won the Grand Prix at Spruce Meadows. The 2016 Olympic Silver Medalist continues to travel the world adding to his remarkable list of international victories.
2. Lorenzo De Luca
At the age of nine, Lorenzo De Luca discovered his passion for horses after seeing a small riding school in Lecce, Italy where he grew up. After a trainer at a local stable saw Lorenzo's talent at age fifteen, Lorenzo began to put everything he could into his riding. Once he finished school, De Luca decided to leave Italy feeling that it was too secluded from the equestrian world. Lorenzo traveled around Europe riding anywhere he could. It wasn't until he met Henek Nooran that he had a real trainer. He moved back to Italy with Nooran but soon left Italy once again and ended up in Belgium. Lorenzo De Luca then started working with Neil Jones and eventually was asked to join the team at Stephex by Stephan Canter. Over the last few months he has managed to win two five-star Nations Cups for Italy, but that is not enough for this driven rider. Lorenzo now has his sight set on the 2020 Olympics in Toyko.
3. Mclain Ward
PC: Molly Sorge/Chronicle of the Horse
Mclain Ward grew up at horse shows due to both of his parents being professional riders. Ward admits that riding didn't come easy to him, which you would never know by looking at his achievements. Mclain became the youngest rider to win USET Medal Finals and the USEF Show Jumping Talent Derby, at the age of fourteen. Only two years later he took part in the North America Young Riders Championship and won team gold. That same year, 1991, Mclain was named American Grand Prix Association Rookie of the Year. In 1998, Mclain Ward won eleven Grand Prix and was named the AGA Rider of the Year. As if eleven Grand Prix victories the prior year weren't enough, he continued on the next year with thirteen Grand Prix victories and became the youngest rider to pass the $1 million mark in Grand Prix winnings. Ward has been a two-time Olympic Team Gold Medalist aboard his horse Sapphire, Team Gold Medalist at the Pan American Games, Team Silver Medalist at the World Equestrian Games, and competed in fourteen FEI World Cups. Mclain Ward continues to compete and show riders everywhere what hard work can accomplish.
4. Kevin Staut
PC: Henry Moreigne
Kevin is another rider who grew up in the horse world. His mother was a competitive showjumper, prompting him to start riding at age 10. In 2000, Staut won a Young Rider European Championship Gold medal. Nine years later he won Individual European Gold which was his first major medal. In the years following, Kevin has collected two World Championship Team Silvers and a European Team Silver. In 2014 Kevin won the LGCT Paris Grand Prix, was a 2014 LGCT Cannes Grand Prix Bronze medalist, in 2015 was Bronze medalist at the LGCT Vienna Grand Prix, and an Olympic Gold Medalist in Rio. Kevin Staut has talked about the impact his horse Silvana had on his career. In the seven years he rode Silvana she helped bring him up the rankings and helped him become the rider he is today. Kevin remains one of France's most prominent and competitive riders.
5. Scott Brash
PC: Scott Brash's website
Scott Brash started off his riding career competing around the UK with his older sister. After gaining support from Paul Barker of Scotland and Brendon Stud in the U.K., Brash started being noticed internationally for his riding ability. Some of his early career milestones include competing 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games and the Nations Cup on Team Great Britain. Scott's partnership with Hello Sanctos has proved to be most successful. In 2012, Scott and Hello Sanctos won their first Grand Prix together at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida. No sooner had they won their first Grand Prix, they earned a Team Gold Medal at the 2012 London Olympics. This dynamic duo rode their way to team gold at the 2012 European Championships, the 2013 and 2014 Longines Global Champions Tour Series Championship, to two 2015 Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix victories and to a historic victory in the 2015 Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. In 2013, Scott was appointed as a Member of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth. He was honored again in 2015 by being inducted into the British Horse Society Equestrian Hall of Fame, for having achieved the Highest Distinction in the field of Equestrianism. Not only is Scott a world-renowned rider, a MBE, inductee into the British Horse Society Equestrian Hall of Fame, but he is humble in crediting his success to his hard-working team.