USA’s Brian Moggre is just 20 and in the salad days of his professional career but he has already accomplished something most showjumpers are lucky to achieve in a lifetime, by taking a grand prix second place at Aachen last summer – and he has done it with the support of two of the world’s legendary showjumpers, Laura Kraut and Nick Skelton.
“I started getting help from them a year and a few months ago,” said Brian, who is set to ride in tonight’s Saturday Night Lights at the Winter Equestrian Festival, riding Stevie Macken’s Dior P Z, competing against 45 other combinations including Laura on St Bride’s Farm’s Confu.
“They are fantastic,” Brian said. “Laura, being a competitor here herself still, and Nick. As a young professional they really encourage me to be my own person. They guide me along the way and they help with training. And provide insight in any way I need it, whether that be the riding or running the business aspect of it. I am so grateful that they have kind of taken me under the wing.”
Last year Brian and his Aachen horse Balou Du Reventon, were shortlisted for the Olympics. He was 19 at the time and could have been overwhelmed, had Nick and Laura not been ready to weigh in with support.
“I think it’s a lot for a 19-year-old to handle,” said Brian. “They really helped me to keep my head on my shoulders, keep my head in the game and really keep a competitive mindset about it, plus being realistic. Laura and Nick have both been to endless championships. They’ve been through the process so to be associated with people who have done all the things that I hope and dream to do someday really makes me feel great as an upcoming professional.”
Tonight’s track will be designed by week 10’s international arena course designer, Canada’s Michel Vaillancourt. “It’s later in the circuit so it [the course] definitely won’t be a walk in the park,” Brian predicted. “For a four-star grand prix it will definitely ask all the right questions, but I don’t think it will over-face many horse-rider combinations. I also don’t think it will be a giveaway and I think it will be good sport tonight.”
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