Written by Pam Maley
Where can you see a lively, funny, and playful Pro-Am ‘Style & Competition’ for Charity event one night, and the heart-stopping thrill of a CSI5* show jumping competition the next? These two events will collide at the Longines Masters of Los Angeles, October 1st – 4th. The Masters of Los Angeles took its place last year as the American stop on the Longines Masters Series, a resoundingly successful launch.
The Pro-Am ‘Style & Competition’ for Charity was one of the most talked-about events of the week, and doubtless will be again this year. Some of the world’s best riders are teamed with an amateur rider – but not just any amateur rider. These amateurs are celebrities from the worlds of show business, movies, television, and business. All the riders swap their riding gear for creative and far-fetched costumes, turning their sporting performance into an entertaining show. Saturday night at the Longines Masters is synonymous with fun and glamour as the stars and VIP are welcomed on the famous Red Carpet for the Gucci Gold Cup and the ‘Style & Competition.’
Each team competes to raise money for a charity of their choice, and last year they raised $35,000 per team, underscoring the ‘Charity’ part in the class title. As to the ‘Competition’ part, the obstacles are lowered (1.10m for the amateurs, 1.30m for the professionals) and the teams are judged according to rules of show jumping. The ‘Style’ component of the event is judged by a jury of international personalities on the quality of the costumes, the music, and the choreography.
2014 saw Batman villains Laura Kraut (Catwoman) and Hannah Selleck (Poison Ivy) riding for JustWorld. Surfer dudes Will Simpson and Hannah Von Heidegger entered the ring carrying their boards, and Will balanced his on an oxer and climbed aboard for Compton Junior Posse. Jessica Springsteen and Hilary McNerny ‘peaced out’ for Amade Mondiale; Alex Crown and Kent Farrington were Ninja Turtles for Autism Speaks; and Jane Richards Phillips and Tiffany Sullivan got in touch with their inner Las Vegas showgirls, to name just a few.
Another evening of creative hilarity is doubtless in store, to the great benefit of worthy causes and the delight of show jumping fans.
Feature Photo: Hannah Selleck | All Photos © Longines Masters