Jumping Mechelen still believes!

16 October 2020

It’s still uncertain because the green light will only be given by the Mayor of Lier and the ministerial committee at the earliest at the end of October, but the organizers of Jumping Mechelen are still trying to hold on courageously.

One thing is certain, the 85,000 regular visitors to the event will not be able to attend this year. To develop a financially viable project, the organizers had to leave the Nekkerhall for a year... and move to the Azelhof facility in Lier, which is not far away. Mechelen is planning a Covid Pop-up edition from December 26 to 30, with the 3 stages of the FEI World Cup (show jumping, dressage, driving), the final of the FEI Jumping Ponies’ Trophy, as well as a CSI Juniors and Young Riders, the final of the JM Indoor Masters and an Auction for 2-year-old horses. It’s a good program in these difficult times.

The FEI will host the World Cup Final in 2021, provided there are at least three qualifiers. To this end, Jumping Mechelen wants to contribute to international equestrian sport in these difficult times. In addition to the events for juniors and young riders, the riders of the FEI Jumping Ponies’ Trophy, as well as the selected riders from the JM Indoor Masters will be able to count on a good final event. An auction for 2-year-old horses is also on the cards. For the other finals, which cannot take place during Jumping Mechelen 2020, federations are looking for an alternative and will keep their members informed.

In the plan submitted for the Covid Pop-up edition of Jumping Mechelen, the number of public seats will unfortunately be limited. Visitors will be able to attend the event but will need to be seated at a table, according to the catering protocol. For those who cannot be present, they will be able to follow the event next to the Christmas tree at home. During these 5 days of competition, the organization will provide an online live stream as well as a live TV broadcast.

The organizing committee wants to be realistic and is not yet decrying victory, but they can only be congratulated for this very well-thought-out fallback plan which has been adapted to the current situation.

Julien Counet