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Déjà-vu in Rome

Longines Global Champions Tour hosted its 13th tour stop from September 11 - 13, 2015 at the stunning Stadio dei Marmi in Rome (Italy), just over a mile from where the World Equestrian Games where conducted 17 years ago.

Both events had one thing in common: OTTO Sport was on board. Back in 1998, Werner Otto, together with the late Hermann Duckek, was responsible for the tournament surfaces. After the organizers of LGCT had asked OTTO Sport to build, maintain and remove the temporarily installed tournament arena with a total size of 6,300 sqm, Werner Otto insisted to travel to Rome himself and personally supervise this project.

Already at Stadio dei Marmi, OTTO installed their legendary OTTO-PerforatedMats. After all, the World Equestrian Games 1998 were almost cancelled due to torrential rain. Thanks to OTTO-PerforatedMats, horses and riders could use the arena already within minutes after the rain had stopped. Newspapers across the country reported about it, calling it 'Miracolo di Roma', the miracle of Rome.

Duckek would certainly have enjoyed this Déjà-vu when, during the first day of the tournament, dark clouds menacingly appeared and proceeded to create a heavy downpour over the event's location. After a short intermission, the riders could carry on their competition under perfect surface conditions. Once more, the OTTO surface system had proven what it is capable of.

We would like to thank Jan Tops, founder and president of Longines Global Champions Tour, as well as his amazing team of organizers for their trust in our surfaces and works.

General Rehearsal in Rio, Brazil: “Team OTTO” passes first test before the Olympic Games with flying colors

rio test eventIt feels as though the Olympic flame has already been lit up. Flower arrangements and a cheering crowd on the terraces, horses pawing on the ground and judges standing at the arena border with a serious look on their faces. “Everything was just as you would expect it to be during the actual Games”, Wolfgang Otto reports being back home at his company’s headquarters, tanned and satisfied. However, there was one significant difference: the three-day test event in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil was not all about the horses and riders, but about the arena constructors.

Wolfgang Otto was anything but nervous. For one, it is simply not in his nature. The CEO of German company OTTO Sport is a calm and down-to-earth routinier, especially considering the fact that he and his team had been on site in Brazil for the previous 7 weeks before the test event, so there would be no reason to be afraid of any unpleasant surprises.

They were on site when 2,500 tons of sand were shipped to the construction grounds, when 16,000 square meters of OTTO-PerforatedMats were installed and, this way, three of a total of five ordered arenas were finished on schedule.

On the first day of the test event, none other than Rio’s mayor visited the site. TV cameras pointed Brazilian test riders and their horses, screens displayed the scores given by the judges. However, one year before the competition for medals begins on the OTTO arenas, neither celebrities nor athletic performance were the center of attention. All that mattered were questions such as “How many riders can have their turn on the arenas before the surface needs to be watered and levelled? How many tractors including the new OTTO- ArenaLevellers will be needed? How can the whole maintenance procedure be included without disturbing the event?”

Although these questions might sound rather trivial, they absolutely contribute to the success of a major event such as this one. After all, when competing for Olympic honor, the twentieth rider must encounter the exact same condition of the surface as the first. This is accomplished by means of proper maintenance in the arenas. “For me, the test event was less about examining our installed product than it was a test run for our maintenance activities” says Otto. His conclusion: a few more tractors and levellers and nothing will stand in the way of a fair competition.

In January 2016, ‚team OTTO‘ will travel to Rio once more. They are looking forward to this as, despite being mainly about technical features, the test event has truly lit up the Olympic fire in the heart of the German arena constructors. 

Vilamoura Champions Tour 2014

vilamoura champions tour 2014

On September 25, 2014, VILAMOURA CHMPIONS TOUR 2014 will begin at the impressive grounds of Centro Hípico in Vilamoura (Faro, Portugal). The owner, who is none other than Mr. Antonio Moura, was convinced of the top quality OTTO Sport footing provides and had the classic system installed in his arenas.

The main arena (330 x 260 ft = 100 x 80 m2) named „Francisco Moura Arena“ offers horses as well as riders safety and comfort during the tournament. Beneath the sand, OTTO’s famous Perforated Mats are installed, which not only meet the entire range of requirements of professional equestrianism, but have also been described as the ideal solution for equestrian sports by numerous renowned riders. For more information, click here.

LONGINES Global Champions Tour 2014 in Lausanne

OTTO Sport is the Official Footing Supplier for LONGINES Global Champions Tour 2014 of Lausanne, which will take place from September 12th - 14th!

We would like to thank LONGINES Global Champions Tour for their trust in OTTO Sportʻs Equestrian Surfaces and we wish the organizers and sponsors a successful event and Good Luck to all the contestants!
longines-global-champion-tour lausanne 2014

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