Dutch young rider Marten Luiten has received the ride on the 8-year old Westfalian gelding Janus G.I.H. from Danish rider colleague Anne-Mette Strandby Hansen.
"We Started Talking"
The European Youth Championships are not only the competitive highlight of the year for riders aged 12 to 25. Aside from the sportive impact such a continental championship has on the lives of the riders, it is also the place where friendships are forged and networks created.
Dutch European Young Rider champion Marten Luiten acquainted Danish European Under 25 Champion Anne-Mette Strandby at the 2020 Euros in Budapest last August. After collecting their individual gold medals, they went their separate ways returning home, but stayed in touch.
"Anne-Mette and I started talking about our horses at the Europeans last year," Luiten told Eurodressage. "I was looking for a future prospect and because Johnny (Janus) is a high quality horse that fits me well, and because Anne-Mette believes that with the guidance of Monique Peutz, he can develop with me, we crossed borders and staeted this collaboration."
University Studies and Five Horses
The rising 26-year old Strandby works as a professional rider at the major horse dealing yard, Helgstrand, in Denmark, and has a full book of horses to already train, present to clients, and compete.
She saw a future for Janus with the 19-year old Luiten, who combines his university studies with an already semi-professional riding career. He is in his second Bachelor year studying Business Management at the University of Groningen.
"Fortunately the combination (of riding) with university goes well. It's doable with strict planning and I'm not running behind schedule," Marten explained.
Luiten currently has five horses in training: his top horse Fynona, the 8-year old Danish warmblood mare Tailormade Zofie (by Overgaard's Zacksu x Bernstein), the 7-year old Dutch warmblood mare Jemima LH (by Everdale x Don Gregory) and the 5-year old Dutch warmblood Larsson (by Everdale).
"Anne-Mette is proud that I ride him and we are proud that with this collaboration we can show that in top sport, people can also work together," said Marten.
Luiten's next international show will be the 2021 CDI Exloo with Fynona.
Janus G.I.H. is a 2013 born Westfalian by Johnson out of Wacanta G.I.H. (by World Magic x Weyden x Romadour II). He is bred by Christa Gelbach and Georg Willin at Gestut im Hofbruch.
He was accepted at the 2015 Westfalian Stallion Licensing in Munster, but never did his performance test and didn't stand at stud.
While working as an apprentice in Germany, Strandby Hansen discovered Janus G.I.H. as a rising 4-year old gelding and purchased him at the start of 2017.
Strandby competed the liver chestnut only at one show, in Silkeborg (DEN) in July 2019, placing fourth and first in the LA1-tests.
"I met Marten during the Europeans last summer, and we talked about horses, of course. He told me that he was searching for a future star," Strandby told Eurodressage. "Marten came to Denmark a couple months later to try the horse, and they were a really good match. “Johnny” as we call him is a very special horse with an unbelievable power, and to be honest it has been hard to control all this power and huge gaits, especially in his younger years, but he really starts to get it now."
Strandby's agenda is full of horses at Helgstrand with a lot of competitions taking up her time on the weekends.
"I’m very lucky to have a lot of good horses at work, where I compete around the world. That also means time away from own horses, so when Marten matched so well with Johnny I thought it was a really good idea to make a cooperation," she said. "I think it’s very positive that we in top sport can work together and I can’t wait to see what Marten and Johnny can achieve together!"
Photos © Rianne Schaper Fotografie
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