Paso Finos at CHIO

The Paso Fino Association of Europe was founded in 2000 with the aim of furthering knowledge of the breed throughout Europe. There have been many events and Shows held during the thirteen years of its existence, all of which have been well attended.

This has resulted in the Paso Fino and members of the PFAE being found in many countries as far away as the Czech Republic, Holland, Ireland, France, Norway and Sweden, the UK , Germany, Austria and Switzerland. With the interest growing in the breed the PFAE was invited to demonstrate the Paso Finos at Equitana held at Essen in Germany. This show attracts thousands of visitors from all over Europe to see the displays, the retail stands and demonstrations from top equestrians. The Paso Finos captivated scores of visitors over the five day show which we had the honour to attend for several years. This lead directly to the PFAE being invited to demonstrate at CHIO Aachen this year.

This is a nine day show attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors and competitors from all over the world every year. The PFAE took fourteen horses to CHIO including three mares and foals. We were given a fifteen minute slot to showcase the breed in a large arena. The team divided into four groups to show the horses in each corner of the arena. The music was emotive capturing the spirit of the Paso Fino. Each group showed the horses individually and all came together in a grand finale the horses clearly enjoying showing to the crowd.

In the afternoon we were invited to join six other gaited breeds in the huge Aachener Soers ring. There was an audience of 40,000 spectators already on the edge of their seats following the end of an International show jumping competition. Their enthusiasm did not wane upon seeing the Paso Finos, nor throughout the whole of their demonstration, they gave a great ovation followed by the clicking of many cameras. The team moved confidently and exquisitely amongst the huge jumps in this imposing arena. The horses showing their Brio and bravery in a very daunting and electrifying atmosphere. This was a splendid opportunity to showcase the Paso Fino horses to a very wide audience of horse enthusiasts.

The Paso Finos were represented by:
- Christin Bachmann & El Dorado de Ojos Azules
- Katrin Bedacht & Leneus del Gavilan
- Claudia Metting & Tomaria’s Excelencia
- Babs Moorhouse & Florencia de Tomaria
- Britta Mülle & Brujula del Caron
- Johanna Paul & La Paloma del Caron
- Stanley Paul & Amistad del Seminole
- Alexandra Rau & Campino de Rico Arroyo
- Sandra and Frank Hornickel with Cenicienta del Aliso & Caracas del Retorno and Matahari del Gavilan & Milonga del Retorno)
- Nora Mattusch and Richard Oré with Novarlee del Gavilan & Napoles del Retorno.

Report by Yvonne Bowen, photographs by Marina & Günther Rau