The only speed class of its kind in the world
The Longines Speed Challenge, with prize money of $130,000 takes place over a 1.45m course. An event which is full of emotion and suspense, it has become something that the audience really looks forward to.
Created in Paris in 2010 by EEM World, this class requires perfect timing and infinite precision, two values which are dear to the Longines brand, a passionate supporter of equestrian sports. It differs slightly from traditional speed classes because a fault only leads to a two second penalty, instead of the usual four. A fallen rail needn’t be crippling, therefore, and riders can still hope to catch up these two penalty seconds by going just that little bit faster. This modification has given this high-flying sporting class an even more spectacular dimension. For this new season of the Longines Masters, a new course will be designed which will remain unchanged for each of the three legs: from Los Angeles to Hong-Kong via Paris, there will be the same line and the same number of obstacles, at the same height (1.45m). So the riders will be able to improve their speed skills from one continent to the other!
The California public discovered this new type of class in 2014. US experts and novices shared the same enthusiasm even if their own riders were overshadowed by the European riders, particularly Jane Richard Philips, the equestrian muse of Longines, the sponsor of the class, who beat Belgium’s young Constant van Paesschen by sixteen hundredths of a second. In the Longines Speed Challenge, the difference between winning and losing can be miniscule!
2014 Longines Los Angeles Masters - Jane Richard Philips & Dieudonne de Guldenboom