Steve Guerdat is currently still number one of the world. He just ‘scored’ a sponsorship with Hermès and he will become a father for the first time this year. More than reasons enough to talk with Guerdat about his horses; the baby on its way and his examples in the sport!
‘What my philosophy about the sport is? I think the most important thing is the love for horses. You have to understand them. They are our partner, so if you want to put in good results, you have to know your horses. Before you can become a winner, you have to be a real horse lover”, Guerdat starts.
The Corona pandemic was absolutely terrible for many. As for you, would you say it helped you in any way?
“In a professional sense, not so much. I’ve always loved being at home, spending time there and spending time with my young horses. My horses don’t go to CSI5* shows every weekend, even when there wouldn’t be a global pandemic. As for me personally, I think that this situation has given us the opportunity to take a breath and deal with the important things of everyday life, which previously passed by completely unnoticed in our fast-paced times.
Do you still get help or advice from your father (the internationally highly renowned trainer Philippe Guerdat, editor’s note) today?
“I know he’s there when I need him. I don’t call him every day to ask him what I should do, but whenever I need some advice, he will always be there for me. We talk a lot however, but not always about horses”.
You’re going to be a father yourself this year. How do you think the birth of your child will affect your career when you will be away from home a lot? And would you like the Guerdat saga to continue?
“I’m not a big planner in advance. I always act according to my feeling. Of course it’s a pleasure to see our family growing and we’ll see how things develop over time. I know it will change my life, but for the better. We will see how we will organize everything in the future. Do I want my baby to ride? I leave that decision up to her. It is completely unimportant and not relevant at all. What is important is that she’s healthy and does whatever she wants to do in her life”.
You are a big inspiration for many riders. But who are you looking up to? And what does one have to do to become Steve Guerdat’s idol?
” John Whitaker, because he is the rider I most resemble in the sense that he is a great horseman. He has this natural feeling for horses and this love for them, as well as a list of excellent successes. For me, he is the rider who has best managed to keep the simplicity, the naturalness of riding, and still win everything at the same time. For this he will always be my greatest idol. A great horseman”.
Who would you say is your favorite horse if you have to pick one?
I have had the great fortune to meet very exceptional horses. I think the best horse I have ever ridden is Tepic La Silla. But the one that has fulfilled me the most or that I have loved the most is Jalisca. The most important horse of my career that has helped me achieve the greatest successes is Nino … You see, it’s difficult to name just one. It’s not just the talent of one horse that makes it better than another. His good character and strong personality are also very important qualities.
Source: Oliva Nova Magazine