Women win show jumping Battle of the Sexes for fifth consecutive year

Candice King
Candice King, shown here at the 2012 Alltech National Horse Show, was one of the top finishers at the $55,000 Nespresso Battle of the Sexes at the 2013 Winter Equestrian Festival. Photo: Leslie Potter

Equestrian sports are among the few athletic activities in which men and women compete against each other as equals. But for five years at the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, Fla., the women have proven to be the dominant show jumping force in the Nespresso Battle of the Sexes.

Teams for this spectator-favorite event include Olympic veterans as well as up-and-coming show jumping stars from the U.S. and around the world. This year’s team rosters:

  • Captain: Charlie Jayne (USA)
  • Shane Sweetnam (IRE)
  • Richie Moloney (IRE)
  • Daniel Bluman (COL)
  • Luis Larrazabal (VEN)
  • Ramiro Quintana
  • Steve Schaefer (USA)
  • Darragh Kenny (IRE)
  • Alex Granato (USA)
  • Nick Skelton (GBR)
  • Captain: Georgina Bloomberg (USA)
  • Laura Kraut (USA)
  • Margie Engle (USA)
  • Marilyn Little (USA)
  • Maggie Bracco (USA)
  • Nicole Bellissimo (USA)
  • Debbie Stephens (USA)
  • Brianne Goutal (USA)
  • Candice King (USA)
  • Schuyler Riley (USA)
Nick Skelton
Nick Skelton, shown here at the 2012 Alltech National Horse Show, was the top finisher for the men’s team at the 2013 $55,000 Nespresso Battle of the Sexes. Photo: Leslie Potter

The men started off strong, winning the speed round with a six to four victory. In the second round, riders compete on side-by-side, identical courses in a match race. The women came back with a six to four victory of their own in the match race, tying up the score and bringing the final result down to phase three, the six-bar competition.

In the final round, the competition started at 1.60m (5’3″) and was increased to 1.80m (5’11”) over three rounds. Four riders from each team competed in this final phase. Nick Skelton, a member of the British show jumping team that won gold at last summer’s Olympics, was the only member of the men’s team to make the final round, joining Candice King and Georgina Bloomberg. All three riders went clear and opted not to continue. With two points awarded per clear round, that was enough for the women to pull a narrow victory over the men.

The Battle of the Sexes was introduced at the WEF in 2009, and the women have been victorious every year since. The Saturday evening event draws a near-capacity crowd to the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. This year’s tally was said to be over 3,500 spectators in the stands for this opening night of the 2013 WEF, which continues through April 3. For more information, visit www.equestriansport.com. To watch video from this year’s Nespresso Battle of the Sexes, visit USEFNetwork.com.

Further Reading
2009 Battle of the Sexes
2010 Battle of the Sexes
2011 Battle of the Sexes
2012 Battle of the Sexes


  1. Yay for the women, I was there for the third year in a row and I love how we are dominating the men in this event. Women 5, men 0……….lol the superior sex stands over and on top the weaker one,lol. All fun aside what a lovely event and better luck to the ever trying and improving men but I know we gonna beat you all for a long time to come,lol.

  2. Lol @ Susan well we should keep the puny men under our feet!! i too went to this event and it was lovely and the banter was good but as with the overall battle of the sexes the women just too good for the men. Woman power!!!!! men you will always be second to us and at our feet,lol. Great show to the organisers.

  3. Shalene & Susan you women sure are arrogant & sexist lol.
    With all that arrogance & sexism, you women deserve to lose to show you’re the inferior sex lol.
    This was in 2013 after you beat us for the 5th time. Then you beat us in 2014. In 2015 we almost won but you avoided defeat in a tie. Frustrating. Then you beat us in 2016 and 2017. I refuse to bow to women and admit y’all are superior but I admit I’m getting close. lol


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