Explosion W ruled out of World Showjumping Championships

  • The Olympic champion Ben Maher’s gold medal-winning ride Explosion W has been ruled out of contention for next week’s World Showjumping Championships in Herning, Denmark (10-14 August) it has been confirmed today (Wednesday, 3 August).

    A statement from Ben said: “We’re incredibly disappointed to have to take this decision but Explosion W just isn’t quite at his peak fitness to take on the demands of this championship. He’s well in himself but jumping championship tracks over consecutive days takes a great deal of stamina. He’s simply too special a horse to risk so, with his welfare at the forefront of my mind I felt this was the best action.”

    Before heading to this year’s championships, the chestnut superstar was supposed to be making one final appearance in the ring at the Longines Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead.

    However, while Ben jumped several of his other horses at the five-star show, Charlotte Rossetter and Pamela Wright’s 13-year-old gelding remained at home and it has now been revealed that he is not fit to compete next week.

    Explosion W’s last international appearance came in the Rolex grand prix at Aachen in June, where the pair jumped clear in round one before picking up four faults in round two.

    Before Aachen, Ben and Explosion W had jumped double clear in the Longines Global Champions Tour grand prix of Stockholm – the pair’s first five-star show since Geneva in December of last year.

    Ben Maher will still be part of the four-rider squad representing Great Britain at the World Championships, instead bidding for medals with his direct reserve ride Faltic HB, a 12-year-old stallion owned by Oakingham Stud who he began riding at the end of 2021.

    “Oakingham Stud’s Faltic HB has jumped fantastically this season, I’m really looking forward to being part of a very exciting British team in Herning,” said Ben.

    He will be joined by Harry Charles on Romeo 88, Scott Brash with Hello Jefferson and Joe Stockdale riding Equine America Cacharel.

    John Whitaker is the travelling reserve with Equine America Unick Du Francport.

    But the absence of Ben’s Tokyo Olympics gold medal-winning partner Explosion W will undoubtedly be a huge blow for Team GB as they bid to win a first world championship team medal since 1998.

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