Palexpo. The name is always mentioned with an air of respect. The name of this mighty hall, the temple of the equestrian sport. An indoor arena that is unparalleled in the whole world. It is a place that impresses, which was built to make sport legends out of the riders. Since 1991, the CHI Geneva has been staged here on Lake Geneva, offering a view of the majestic Mont Blanc. Impressive dimensions and an enthusiastic atmosphere turn the Palexpo into one of the cult sites of equestrian sport. In December, the next chapter of one of the most exciting stories of the international sport will be written: The story of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, which unites tradition, passion and world-class sport at the highest possible level. Who will be the first rider to claim the crown of the sport, who will be the first one in the history of the equestrian sport to win the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, the CHI Geneva and the CHIO Aachen in succession? All eyes will be on Pieter Devos during CHI Geneva 2013, the young Belgian rider, who left the entire equestrian elite trailing behind him at the ‘Masters’ in Calgary and rode his horse Candy to victory. In Geneva, Devos is placing his bets on the huge arena, because Candy loves big halls.
Since 1991, the CHI has been staged in this indoor arena, which is the largest in the world. At its premiere in 1926, the first international show-jumping competition in Geneva was held in the newly constructed Palais de Expositions. 50 years later the show relocated to the “Centre Sportif des Vernets”, before making its current location, Palexpo, its home since 1991. Where else but here, the biggest indoor stadium in the world, would be the perfect place to write history? It is certainly not going to be easy for Pieter Devos to repeat his Calgary victory. In particular, with the Olympic gold medallist and Swiss sports hero, Steve Guerdat, who will be doing his very best to win the home game: “I came fifth in Aachen in June and finished second in Calgary in September – now of course my aim is to come under the top rankings in Geneva in December.”
On Sunday, during the traditional Rolex Grand Prix, we will see if the successful rider Pieter Devos manages to become a legend, despite his young age. Welcome to the CHI Geneva 2013, welcome to the Rolex Grand Slam.