If he has five minutes for an interview about this Corona-crisis. "Five minutes?", Niels laughs, "I have more than five minutes now. This is an unknown situatie that strikes hard, but also has advantages. It is just the first week, but I enjoy the time I spend with my family now. Luckily the weather is nice so we can do things we otherwise won't be able to do. Like spending a lazy Sunday."
"I really dare to say: I'm afraid, really afraid of this virus. You realize how mortal a human is. That is also why I really follow the rules.
"I use this time to spend more time training the young horses. Still I hope competition season will be back soon. For my top horses this quarantine period is a bad case if it will last long. They need a competition rythm to stay fit at this level. Three weeks will be ok, but six weeks? These are all weeks my horses can't be trained or I have no income, etc.
For the Longines Global Champions Tour season this was the period we had to travel most. All flights, hotels, blood tests were booked this will cost a lot of money, question is when we will be able to win it back. But more importantly is - for me - the cancellation of the World cup Finals in Las Vegas. Everything was booked.
But the financial aspect is just one part. I feel more pitty for my compatriot, Pieter Devos. He was ranked second in the World Cup ranking, and had a good chance of taking the title. That is eventually the goal as a top rider.
About Tokio I can only say... it will be a personal disaster if it will fall away. But let us stay positive and hope the virus will be contained soon.