The CHIO Aachen CAMPUS as a stepping stone to top sport

Max Haunhorst, participant of the 20/21 Programme of Excellence

Being able to learn from a rider like Jos Lansink, who has so much experience and who has won so many titles, is a unique opportunity for us all.

The aim behind our Programme of Excellence is to pave the way for young and talented riders from all over the globe into top competition sport. Over the course of several months, we provide the top dressage and show jumping talents with all the tools they need to be well-equipped for the “big circus”. Because the content of our programme holds its promise: It really is excellent.

It is a huge privilege to be able to lend the talents the support of the head coaches, Isabell Werth (Rheinberg) and Jos Lansink (Belgium), who both look back on unique achievements on the international sports circuit: Both are Olympic gold medallists, World Champions and of course winners of the most difficult classes at the CHIO Aachen. The talents can profit from the know-how and skills of the two international stars of the equestrian sport scene in six training phases in total, all of which are staged at the famous CHIO showgrounds.

And as if that were not enough: Our programme offers many other experts, who will advise the aspiring young riders in fitness, media and food matters as well as assisting them with their training plan, horse and stable management or planning their careers.

Dressage: Isabell Werth

The world's most successful dressage rider of all time:

• seven-time Olympic champion

• seven world championship titles

• 13 European Championship medals

• CHIO Aachen record winner: 13 times winner of the Deutsche Bank Prize, Dressage Grand Prix of Aachen

Show Jumping: Jos Lansink

Outstanding international successes as a show jumper:

• Team Olympic Champion 1992 in Barcelona with the team of the Netherlands

• Winning the World Championship title at the World Equestrian Games in Aachen 2006 for Belgium

• Winner of the Rolex Grand Prix, the Grand Prix of Aachen 1992

National coach of the Dutch show jumpers

Participants Jumping

Henning Athens

Origin: Germany

His greatest achievements: Champion of Westphalia 2020, won Young Riders Grand Prix in the Czech Republic in 2021, placings in 1.50 metre jumping classes

First time he rode: Aged three on his pony called Apeggio.

His team for the Mercedes Benz Nations Cup: Daniel Deußer, Marcus Ehning, Kent Farrington

His tip for aspiring young riders: Always work hard on yourself.

His favourite quote: Try and see if the fault lies with you, if you can’t find it, look harder!

His biggest dream: To compete in the Rolex Grand Prix in Aachen.

Leila Bingold

Origin: Germany

Her biggest achievements: Victory in the Finals of the FEI Youth Nations Cup in Peelbergen in 2021, placed in the European Youngster Cup in Salzburg in 2021, victory in a 1.45 metre jumping class at the German Championships of the Young Riders.

First time she rode: She rode a horse for the first time when she was still in her mother’s womb. She sat on a horse in front of her mother before she could walk.

Her team for the Mercedes Benz Nations Cup: Marcus Ehning, Ludger Beerbaum, Steve Guerdat

Her tip for aspiring young riders: Take your time and enjoy the small victories.

Her favourite quote: If dreams don’t scare you, they are not big enough.

Her biggest dream: To make it to top level sport, win the Rolex Grand Prix in Aachen and take part at the Olympic Games.

Camille Demolie

Origin: Belgium

Her biggest achievements: Second in the Belgium Championships of the Children, seventh at the European Championships, competing in Aachen

First time she rode: Her parents put her down for lessons at a riding stable when she was seven to try it out. She loved it immediately.

Her team for the Mercedes Benz Nations Cup: Steve Guerdat, Gregory Wathelet, Ben Mayer

Her tip for aspiring young riders: Never give up, there are always good and bad moments. Continue to work hard at your goals, one day you’ll achieve them.

Her favourite quote: Never give up, good things take time.

Her biggest dream: To ride in five-star classes and travel around the world.

Axel Vandoorne

Origin: Belgium

His greatest achievements: Belgian Champion in the Children’s classification, seventh at the European Championships of the Children, took part in international jumping classes aged 14.

First time he rode: At a pony camp aged three.

His team for Mercedes Benz Nations Cup: Steve Guerdat, Daniel Deußer, Gregory Wathelet

His tip for aspiring young riders: Always remember to respect and love the horses. Everyone can have a bad day, it is all about finding a solution together.

His favourite quote: Love what you do and do what you love.

His biggest dream: Winning gold at the Olympics and winning the Rolex Grand Prix in Aachen.

Iris Michels

Origin: The Netherlands

Her biggest achievements: Competing in 1.50 metre jumping classes, competing in Grand Prix at the age of 15, winning the Mediterranean Equestrian Tour in Oliva with a young horse.

First time she rode: Aged nine or ten she still hadn’t decided whether to ride motocross bikes or horses, she ultimately opted for horses and started show jumping at the age of twelve.

Her team for the Mercedes Benz Nations Cup: Henrik von Eckermann, Kent Farrington and Harrie Smolders

Her tip for aspiring young riders: Find a good trainer and take his advice, but always have a plan for yourself and your horse.

Her favourite quote: You will probably experience more failures than success!

Her biggest dream: To become one of the most successful riders in the world.

Skye Mossinkhof

Origin: Netherlands

More information to follow.

Richard Kierkegaard

Origin: Argentina

More information to follow.

Participants Dressage

Moritz Treffinger

Origin: Deutschland

His greatest achievements: Triple European Champion, German Champion, won silver in the “Prize of the Best”

First time he rode: Aged three, the whole family already rode at that point in time.

His team for the Lambertz Nations Cup: Isabell Werth, Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and Dorothee Schneider

His tip for aspiring young riders: Have fun and try everything out once.

His favourite quote: The main thing is the outfit looks good!

His biggest dream: Competing at the Olympic Games

Emily Voss

Origin: Germany

More information to follow.

Marten Luiten

Origin: The Netherlands

His greatest achievements: 5x gold at the European Championships in 2020 and 2021, number one in the world rankings of the Juniors and Young Riders

First time he rode: On a small pony at home.

His team for the Lambertz Nations Cup: Isabell Werth, Charlotte Dujardin, Carl Hester

His tip for aspiring young riders: Never give up!

His favourite quote: Winners never give up, those who give up, never win.

His biggest dream: To be successful at Grand-Prix level.

Renée Stadler

Origin: Switzerland

More information to follow.

Anna Guseynova

Origin: Russia

Her biggest achievements: Childrens Champion at the European Championships in 2016, victories in Aachen and Hagen in the Junior classification in 2018, she has participated at the European Championships six times.

First time she rode: When she was small, she had to stroke every horse she saw. She rode ponies for the first time aged six, but quickly swapped over to horses.

Her team for the Lambertz Nations Cup: Isabell Werth, Helen Langehanenberg, Sara Aagaard Hyrm

Her tip for aspiring young riders: Be passionate and love your horse.

Her favourite quote: Winners have a plan; losers have an excuse.

Her biggest dream: To win a gold medal at the Olympic Games.

Sara Aagaard Hyrm

Origin: Denmark

Her biggest achievements: Individual bronze at the Pony European Championships in 2017, Many-time Danish Champion in the Ponys, Juniors and Young Riders classifications, second in the Young Riders Freestyle at the CHIO Aachen in 2021.

First time she rode: Aged four on a Fjord horse called Sofus.

Her team for the Lambertz Nations Cup: Isabell Werth, Cathrine Dufour and Charlotte Dujardin

Her tip for aspiring young riders: Put a team together that believes in you and your horse. / Let yourself be guided by your passion for your goals.

Her favourite quote: What really is important?

Her biggest dream: To participate at the Olympic Games


Sports Medicine

Prof. Dr. Frank Hildebrand

Photo: Prof. Dr. Frank Hildebrand

Curriculum Vitae

• Director of the Clinic for Orthopedics, Trauma and Reconstructive Surgery, RWTH Aachen University Hospital (UKA)

• 320 listed publications

• over 500 lectures at national and international congresses

• Author of 30 book contributions

• over 20 international awards


Axel Kilders

Photo: Axel Kilders

Curriculum Vitae

• Head physiotherapist of physiotherapist at the Olympic Training Center of the University Hospital Aachen

• Sports physiotherapeutic outpatient physiotherapy at the University Hospital Aachen

• Head sports activities:

-Equestrian sports ( CHIO Aachen for 25 years )

-Soccer ( 2. Bundesliga )

-Tennis ( various ATP tournaments )

-car racing ( various 24h races for PORSCHE / BMW )

- and much more

• Main focus : Musculoskeletal physiotherapy


Pia Jensen

Photo: Pia Jensen

Curriculum Vitae

• Completed a degree in Sport Science at the German Sport University Cologne

• B.Sc. in Sport and Performance

• M.Sc. in Exercise Science and Coaching

• Obtained the “Advanced Sports Nutrition” certificate via a distance learning course of the FC Barcelona Innovation Hub

• Has been working at the GSU Cologne in the Institute for Biochemistry in the Sports Nutrition Department (Science, nutrition counselling, lectures) since 2019

• Freelances as a nutrition consultant and coach for athletes

• Author of the cookery book “Where’s the food?“ – recipes for athletes

• Her interest in sports nutrition was aroused by her own sporting career in athletics (800m)

• Passionately involved in the equestrian sport aged between 4 and 16

Media training

Birgit Eßer

Photo: Birgit Eßer

Top athletes come under the spotlight of public attention at a young age already. I support them in presenting themselves well when dealing with the media.

Curriculum Vitae

• Managing Director and Executive Coach of Redeakademie GmbH in Bonn and Berlin

• Graduate Communication Designer

• Business and Management Coach (ECA)

• She has been supporting top performers from the fields of business, sport and culture with their public appearances in front of audiences and the media for over 10 years

• Core competencies:

-Public appearance coaching

-Media training

-Presentation and pitch consulting

-Executive coaching & sparring

-Stress coaching, stage fright coaching

Training Theory

Matthias Bojer

Photo: Matthias Bojer

Curriculum Vitae

• Graduate sports scientist

• Specialist in the field of performance diagnostics and training control in equestrian sport

• Research prize for his diploma thesis "Functional-anatomical movement analysis of riding and consequences for rider-specific compensatory gymnastics"

• Breeder, rider and trainer in show jumping up to the heavy class

• Head of the equestrian sports research department at the German Sport University in Cologne, where he worked on the following topics

-Development of a fitness test for horses (in cooperation with Ludger Beerbaum)

- Training and supervision of international sport horses

-Lecturer with focus on sport horse training and rider fitness

Cooperation partner

The Excellence Program is supported by our cooperation partner University Hospital Aachen.

Ideal infrastructure

As the westernmost city in Germany and located on the immediate border to the significant equestrian nations of Belgium and the Netherlands, the location Aachen lies in the heart of the international equestrian sport. Countless stars from the international equestrian sport scene live in the regions around the Cathedral City, which makes the border triangle extremely interesting for the equestrian sport both in terms of economic and marketing-related aspects.

The CHIO Aachen itself is a strong brand on the international top sport circuit. It stands for first-class equestrian sport, quality and internationality. The grounds at the Aachen Soers are without doubt one of the biggest and most popular equestrian facilities in the world. But it is not only a very special place for and during the event, thanks to the CHIO Aachen CAMPUS it is also a permanent and all-year-round centre for the international equestrian sport. In this way, the participants of the Excellence Programme can also profit from the unique infrastructure. We can make several outdoor arenas – optionally with grass or sand footing – available for the training sessions as well as two indoor riding schools (80 x 30 metres I 30 x 20 metres). The theory lessons take place in our modern office buildings.

For everyone, who wants to establish a further pillar in addition to the equestrian sport, many offers are available in the direct proximity: No other city can match the density and diversity of the universities, international schools and further training and advanced education options that North Rhine-Westphalia, which is located in the heart of Europe, offers.

Cross-Country Course

Main Stadium

Driving Stadium

Deutsche Bank Stadium

Stable Area


The participants for the Programme of Excellence 2021/22 have been determined.

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