Drum roll please...
The third edition of the GCL Season Awards was celebrated tonight with a special awards ceremony in Prague recognising some of the outstanding achievements from 2022.
With excitement building ahead of the kick-off of the GC Prague Playoffs tomorrow, the Awards ceremony took place in the center of the historic and beautiful city. International guests joined a star-studded gathering of the world’s best riders to applaud the five winners as they received their beautifully designed trophies.
The 2022 GCL Championship saw tactical planning and horsepower at the forefront of team managers minds.
The winners of the 2022 GCL Season Awards are as follows:
Category: Owner of the Best Horse
Winner: H.H Sheikha Maitha bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum for Team Z7 - Z7 Ipswich
The race for this award was just like this year's GCL race... extremely tight. Z7 Ipswich competed in 16 rounds throughout the GCL season over 9 stages in 2022. The stunning equine athlete Z7 Ipswich is ridden by Shane Breen for the Rome Gladiators team.
Speaking about his owners, Shane Breen explained: "I am so grateful to team Z7 and H.H Sheikha Maitha for this amazing opportunity. We have had a fantastic GCL season and fingers crossed this weekend is just as good."
Category: Breeder of the Best Horse
Winner: Miriam van der Kloet - Z7 Ipswich
This award recognizes the impressive achievement of breeding one of the great show-jumping horses in the world today. The winner of “Breeder of the Best Horse” went to Miriam van der Kloet, breeder of Z7 Ipswich. To breed a horse of such exceptional calibre is, extremely difficult and Z7 Ipswich’s talent, intelligence, power and ability to excel in all kinds of arenas has captivated the equestrian world. Z7 Ipswich with Quick Star as his grand sire, is a genuine star and congratulations go out to Miriam who bred him.
Miriam explained: "It feels fantastic. It was two weeks ago in Masstricht that I got the phone call, and I thought 'WOW' i didn't think that would ever happen.
Category: Best U25 Rider
Winner: Mike Kawai
When GCL was launched an important element was to include young riders in the teams as the sport supports the next generation of talent. This year, the winner of “Best U-25 Rider” was Mike Kawai. Kawai has proved his talent and composure this season competing on 11 stages around the world at only 24 years old and helping London Knights, to 8th overall in the GCL Championship.
Mike smiled: "All of this success is down to my horse, Goldwin, this horse changed my career. I am so honoured to win this and so so happy - thank you to the whole of GCL"
Category: Best GCL Rider
Winner: Christian Ahlmann
Christian Ahlmann's has won Best GCL rider for second year running after his outstanding performances against the best in the world at the highest level of sporting competition for the Shanghai Swans. Christian’s record this season was especially notable as he delivered excellent performances consistently riding a number of different horses in the very different arenas of the GCL global circuit.
Ahlmann said: "I am very honoured to get this prize for a second year running. I have a super group of horses and it's a privilege - once again I would like to thank Jan Tops and his team for creating such a great circuit in our sport.”
Tomorrow the GCL Super Cup Quarter Final will get underway at 20:00 with 12 teams taking centre stage. All the action will be live-streamed via www.gctv.gcglobalchampions.com
My vision is clear. Only the best for the best.