05 June 2024

GCL Team Spotlight: Istanbul Warriors

GCL Team Spotlight: Istanbul Warriors

In 2023, the Istanbul Warriors powered by Carpe Diem burst onto the GCL scene with an impressive victory in Doha, marking the beginning of a promising inaugural season. Despite encountering challenges along the way, including setbacks in Miami Beach, the team showcased their resilience by clinching podium finishes in prestigious stops such as Cannes and Rome. Their first season culminated in a top 10 finish at the Super Cup Semi-Final in Prague, narrowly edging out the competition in their first ever GCL Championship.

Fast forward to the 2024 season, and the Istanbul Warriors currently find themselves 11th place after the first five stops of the season in a tightly fought battle for this season’s championship race. However, team manager, owner, and rider, Efe Siyahi, remains undeterred, recognizing the valuable lessons the team can learn from their setbacks. This dynamic team of experienced and up-and-coming riders features four returning riders and two new riders, Geraldine Straumann (U25) and Olivier Robert.

GCL Championship Standings

A temporary setback due to injury in the season opener in Doha has meant that Siyahi has now had to transition from rider to full-time team manager. Adapting to unforeseen circumstances with resilience and strategic planning, Siyahi remains optimistic about the Istanbul Warriors' prospects in the remainder of the season.

When asked about the strengths of the team, Siyahi said, "what makes us strong and a bit different is that I really try to be close with all of the riders, to be friendly and understand their needs. Everyone wants to be successful, but we also all have a good respect and want to achieve this goal together. Everyone wants to do their best for the team." 

Reflecting on the camaraderie within the team, Siyahi emphasized the collaborative spirit among the riders, attributing much of their success to this cohesive dynamic. By fostering an environment of mutual respect and transparency, Siyahi ensures that each member feels empowered to contribute their best efforts towards their collective goal: the team's success.

With the first six stops of the 2024 season complete, Siyahi is crafting a strategic game plan and looking to where they can harness their strengths to propel the team to the top of the leaderboard. With a podium finish in the GCL of Shanghai under their belt this season, the team is keen to build on that success as the season progresses.

Istanbul Warriors Second Place Interview - GCL Shanghai 2024

The Istanbul Warriors will be looking to marry the experience that their four returning riders gained last season with the talent and fresh perspective of their new riders. With new member Straumann’s string of incredibly talented horses, including her star mount Long John Silver, and their impressive performance together in Madrid as their debut GCL event, Siyahi knows that she will be an invaluable asset to the team as the season progresses.

Interview: The Day After with Andreas Schou

Likewise, while Robert may also be new to the team, he boasts a wealth of knowledge, having first ridden on the Longines Global Champions Tour in 2016. Understanding each riders’ strengths and fostering a sense of unity and purpose among the riders, Siyahi is determined to ensure that each member feels valued and motivated to perform at their best.

Looking towards the remaining stops of the season, Siyahi noted that the team is particularly looking forward to Rome and Cannes, where they secured podium finishes in 2023. He added that Cannes is always a favorite of his saying, “I always have a good vibe at Cannes. It’s my personal goal to be back for Cannes”.

As the Istanbul Warriors navigate the rest of the 2024 GCL season, their journey embodies resilience, teamwork, and unwavering determination. With an incredibly tight race for the GCL Championship, Siyahi knows that the Istanbul Warriors are in a good position to fight for the Championship in Riyadh in November. Join us in Cannes as the Istanbul Warriors battle it out at one of their favourite stops of the season.

Join us in Cannes!

    LGCT of Mexico City of Mexico City - - Mexico City, Campo marte - 13 April 2024 - ph.Stefano Grasso/LGCT Copyright: ph.Stefano Grasso/LGCT

    My vision is clear. Only the best for the best.
    Jan Tops - Founder & President