The Milan skyline is spectacular from the competition field of the FEI Jumping European Championship 2023 at the Snai San Siro Racecourse.
And, above all, it is a perfect metaphor for this European event.
The three skyscrapers conceived by the internationally renowned architects, Zaha Hadid, Arata Isozaki and Daniel Libeskind, who have redesigned the Milanese skyline, have been renamed the ‘Storto‘, the ‘Dritto‘ and the ‘Curvo‘. In terms of height, number and imposing appearance, they perfectly mirror the five-ring ambition of these European Championships, scheduled in Milan from August 30 to September 3.
In fact, in addition to the individual and team titles, these Championships put up for grabs three passes for next year’s Olympic Games in Paris. A great dream within the dream of winning the European title, with the aim of catching up with Sweden, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Ireland and Germany, that finished in the top five places at the FEI Jumping World Championship 2022 in Herning; with Belgium, which won the only place available in the final of the FEI Jumping Nations Cup 2022 in Barcelona, Poland, already qualified in FEI Group C, and with France as the host country.
So, three places in view of the five Olympic rings, with the defending champion, Switzerland, objectively on another planet by virtue of its recent extraordinary results, even if it missed the target at the last World Championship, which is expected to narrow down the victory chances to two places for the remaining five teams. According to the projections, Austria, Denmark, Italy, Portugal, Spain and, of course, Switzerland will jump their way to the Seine and the Tour Eiffel next year.
And the Italian team is the focus of great expectations, since it has not participated in an Olympic competition since Athens in 2004. Italy is indeed vying against the others to fulfil this Big Dream. In any case, those who will not manage to be among the magnificent three in Milan, will have one last chance at the 2023 final of the FEI Jumping Nations Cup circuit in Barcelona at the end of September.
(Photo: Team Switzerland, Gold medal in Riesenbeck 2021 – FEI / Christophe Tanière)