It was a magical day yesterday at the “Écuries d'Ecaussinnes” (Belgium), the stomping ground of Christophe Ameeuw, the founder and president of EEM World, to mark the start of the “premium” Longines Masters series. Alongside Juan Carlos Capelli, Vice-President and Head of International Marketing for Longines, Christophe Ameeuw announced the watchmaker's commitment to the intercontinental trilogy which travels between the three prestigious cities of Hong Kong, Los Angeles and Paris. Three events which harmoniously combine high-level sport, art and culture, gastronomy and glamour.
This sacred union was symbolised yesterday at Écaussinnes by the presence of internationally recognised riders from days gone by (Marcel Rozier, Nelson Pessoa, “the father of modern equestrianism” according to French Olympic medallist Hervé Godignon, who was also present) and the stars of today (France’s Roger-Yves Bost, the European Champion, Patrice Delaveau, World Individual and Team Silver medallist, Belgium’s Constant van Paesschen and Jos Verlooy, winner of the first Longines Grand Prix in Los Angeles, as well as US champion Laura Kraut, without forgetting a video speech from World number one, Scott Brash). The “arts” were represented by sculptor Richard Orlinsky and equestrian artist Mario Lurashi, the horseman with 500 films to his name. He presented a sample of his Haute École expertise around the sumptuous dining room, notably with the horse which was a “body double” for Jappeloup in the recent film by Guillaume Canet, who was also present yesterday, alongside Benhamin Castaldi. Gastronomy was represented by the double Michelin-starred Belgian chef, Yves Mattagne, who proposed three buffets reflecting the three stages of the Longines Masters.
All in all, it was a very special occasion, where the new visual identity of the circuit was also presented, including Paris and Los Angeles posters signed by the artist Max Rompo. The event brought together nearly 300 members of the equestrian community: owners, riders and others such as Luc Musette, the Longines Masters’ course designer, who could undoubtedly also be listed in the category of artists. All that's left to do is to sit tight and be patient until Los Angeles in October.