Vaulting, a true worldwide team sport!

CVI Moorsele 2017 (in Belgium) took place last weekend under very hot weather, but other than that it was a great competition. It always is! Great people, great organization, great arenas and training areas, overall a wonderful place to be for a CVI in May. Since two other international competitions were held on the same dates, in Austria and Canada, there were less participants in Belgium, maybe better for the judges, who if I can recall, had quite a bit of work last year!

Rather than writing a review of the CVI I wanted to spot out how amazing our sport is! Ok, you will all agree with that, right? But why?

Vaulting has always been a sport in which helping out others was important and still is. We lend horses quite easily, if your horse unfortunately does not pass the vet check you can most of the time find another one from a different club or even country.

This time what I wanted to spot out is the fact that there is an exception to the FEI rules and regulations of vaulting. Indeed, being from another sport nationality does not stop you from competing in a team from a country different than yours. Let’s say you are Spanish and part of a Polish team, well you can still compete in the team at CVIs in any level 1, 2 or 3*. – Such as if you are Cristiano Ronaldo playing soccer for Real Madrid.

I find it great! Although I am Irish, I vaulted in a French team in Belgium. I know a team from The Netherlands competed internationally with a Belgian vaulter in their team and also a Brazilian team had a Belgian member a few years ago. It must exist elsewhere! However, when it comes to European or World Championships, I am not sure if it works. For the Dutch team I was giving the example, they had to switch vaulters… sad… especially if you have practiced so hard and helped your team qualify.

Actually, in the United States in their national championships, vaulters from foreign countries could compete within the American championships and could also be part of a team. I was once part of a team that competed at the US Championships in Colorado, alongside a French. That made three nationallities in one squad.

Being able to work with new vaulters is amazing to reinforce your team spirit and also learn about how you practice and compete in other countries. It can only be an advantage to our sport seriously.

Coming from a small vaulting country, I think it is a great way to give the opportunity to vaulters to compete internationally in a team before having a team with the level to compete worldwide or just going out as an individual.

What do you think? Do you live in a country different from your sports’ nationality? Let us know!

Charlotte Rimaud

I am an Irish vaulter, becoming a judge but I am also French and live in Paris where I work for a horse racing daily newspaper. I am also the author and owner of the blog vltg.fr .