Currently competing in Genève, Harry Allen is one of the young riders to watch. Brother of talented showjumping rider, Bertram Allen, Harry is not far away of catching up...
Can you talk about what it’s like to be here at CHI Geneva?
I’m delighted to ride here, I’ve never ridden here before. I was once here to watch my brother Bertram (Allen) but to ride here I think it’s going to be unbelievable.
The Majors are putting on more U25 competitions, can you discuss how this helps young riders at the start of their careers?
I think that it’s great for me and for a lot of people my age. We can go to these bigger shows and if we do well, it will give us more opportunities to compete at a variety of big events. Ultimately it gives us experience to compete on a bigger stage which will help us grow in our careers.
What are your aspirations as a rider?
I would love to do as well as I can in the sport and hopefully climb the ladder to the top. It would be great to win some big Grands Prix one day.
What is the atmosphere like at CHI Geneva?
I think there’s a lot of pressure, the crowds are going to be big (they already were for the class this morning) but hopefully if everything goes well, it’ll be a good atmosphere.
Do you get nervous going into the ring?
No, it doesn’t really bother me so much, I just try to focus as much as I can.
The sport has a really wide age group in terms of competitors. Is it hard to break into the top professional level?
It has its ups and downs, but it helps because I can get a lot of help from the older riders and my brother so I am lucky in that respect.
Apart from Bertram (Allen), which riders do you look up to?
I think Marcus Ehning, he’s a great rider. His style, his system, the way he does everything. He always does very well at these Rolex shows, so hopefully it can be a good show here for him.
Which horses do you have here with you this week?
I have Dancing Queen. She’s a very good mare, she won the U25 Grand Prix in Fontainebleau earlier this year and I brought her to the Europeans where I was team bronze and 5th individually.
You left school at 16, to pursue a career in show jumping. How did you make that decision?
It wasn’t really a decision to be honest, I did the juniors and went out to Germany and was doing well, so it just kind of went from there and I stayed on.
Source: Rolex Grand Slam