Christopher Schofield (GBR) and HANS-HEINRICH ISENBART (GER)

FEI-Lausanne (SUI), Jan 11, 2011: Christopher Schofield (GBR), former Chairman of Great Britain’s Young Rider Selectors programme, passed away on 4 January at the age of 90. Many young British Eventing riders enjoyed success during his leadership of the Young Rider Selectors programme, including William Fox-Pitt, Tina Cook and Pippa Funnell.

Jane Holderness-Roddam, who secured team gold in Eventing for Great Britain at the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City, remembers Christopher Schofield as “a truly great character, he was always incredibly enthusiastic and supportive and was always thrilled to hear how the Young Riders were getting on, even in more recent years. He was always there with wise words of advice for us all.”

Legendary junior and young Eventing trainer Gill Watson worked alongside Christopher as team trainer from 1981: “He was the backbone to all the British Young Riders success and really set the ball rolling,” she said. “To me, he was the most amazing supporter and friend.”

The FEI expresses its sincere condolences to the family and friends of Christopher Schofield, to British Eventing and the British equestrian community. The funeral service will be held at 11am on 13 January at St Mary The Virgin, Hambledon, Henley-on-Thames, Oxon, RG9 6RX, UK.

Hans-Heinrich Isenbart (GER), who will be remembered by many as “the voice of equestrian sport” in Germany, passed away on 25 December 2011 at the age of 88.

He was born on 5 February 1923 in Vienna (AUT) into a family that had a passion for horses going back generations. As a young man he had wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps and become an army officer, but his Jewish origins meant that career was denied to him in the Germany of the 1930s and 40s. He later studied law and passed his exams to become a riding instructor. After World War II, he worked as a journalist for German broadcaster NDR, covering political and economic issues, and later took over sport coordination at ARD in Munich, where he remained until his retirement in 1987.

One of the highlights of his career in television was doing the live commentary on the equestrian competitions at the 1956 Olympic Games in Stockholm. From then on he was present at nearly all the major equestrian events, including one of the biggest and most popular horse shows in the world, CHIO Aachen (GER). For all almost 60 years, “the voice of equestrian sport” continued to commentate at events and speak at seminars and congresses. Hans-Heinrich also wrote books and even made a film on horses. Hans-Heinrich Isenbart’s funeral was held on 10 January in the Niedersachsenhalle indoor arena in Verden (GER) where, during his long career, he had been a Master of Ceremony at many gala evenings and had commentated numerous horse shows. Nearly 700 mourners attended the emotional service.

Hans-Heinrich Isenbart will always be remembered for his great eloquence, but also for his life-long dedication to horse welfare. His famous words at the end of every single broadcast were, “Und vergessen Sie die Pferde nicht!” (And don’t forget the horses!) The FEI expresses its sincere condolences to the family and friends of Hans-Heinrich Isenbart, to the German Equestrian Federation, and the German equestrian community.

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