With more than 5000 thrilled spectators the world premiere of the Night Turf St. Moritz celebrated last night a fantastic success on the frozen lake of St. Moritz. For the first time in race history, dashing horses competed on the brightly illuminated 800m straight for fame and honour during the night on snow and ice. Prince du Chevrel won the ‘Show Sprint Trotting Race presented by BMW (Schweiz) AG’ for the Allegra Racing Club stable, with its trainer Claudia Koller in the sulky. In the ‘LONGINES Show-Sprint Race’ Cheryl Schoch on Boccalino from the Chevalex stable of Philipp Schärer’s quarters fought a breathtaking dual against Carina Schneider on Boris Godunov, with Boccalino coming in as the winner. In the mounted ‘Celebrity Skikjöring presented by CREDIT SUISSE’, where in all six daring stars from the international sports and TV scene caused a sensation, artistic gymnast Ariella Kaeslin was the deserved winner with the grey Sano di Pietro, ridden by Karin Zwahlen. Spectacular light shows in the sky above the race track, culinary delicacies, hot sounds by top DJ JAYBEE on the outdoor stage and an exceptional party atmosphere in the VIP tent with mambo music star LOU BEGA turned these fantastic horse races by night into a thrilling experience for all involved.
Yesterday, on Friday evening before the first White Turf race on Sunday, spectacular horse races took place during the night on the frozen lake of St. Moritz for the very first time in the world! From 4 p.m. onwards a great number of spectators poured onto the frozen lake and enjoyed the funfair atmosphere in the fairytale-like tent city. All kinds of culinary delights from the local first-class hotels – Badrutt’s Palace, Kulm, Crystal and Saratz – were on offer in the heated hospitality tents to warm up the spectators. To top this off, DJ JABYBEE provided infectious rhythms on the outdoor stage. The grandstands were fully occupied by 6 p.m., when the Night Turf St. Moritz event with the first horseraces by night on snow and ice was officially opened with an impressive laser show with the theme ‘Light and Fire’.
An incomparable experience against the backdrop of the St. Moritz skyline and the mountains
After this explosive prelude, as the starting shot was fired for the first show race, the tension was tangible among active sportsmen and spectators alike. The crowd were able to enjoy the evening’s events on the frozen lake free of charge thanks to the municipal authorities and the St. Moritz Spa and Tourist Association. Six highly profiled sulky specialists with their equally renowned trotters competed in a spectacular manner in the ‘Show Sprint Trotting Race presented by BMW (Schweiz) AG’ on the brightly illuminated 800m straight immediately in front of the grandstands. The winner stood out clearly before the finishing line. Prince du Chevrel, with total career prize money of almost 600,000 Swiss francs making it the highest winning horse of the weekend on the lake of St. Moritz, gave his opponents no chance in this very first Night Turf race ever. Claudia Koller, who is also Prince du Chevrel’s trainer, sat in the sulky behind this trotter from the Allegra Racing Club stable, belonging to joint owners with Grison roots. The two guests from Northern Germany, Jagger Broline with Stefan Sonnbauer and Yugo with Olaf Schröder, occupied the next two places.
In the following ‘LONGINES Show-Sprint Race’ an exciting duel took place between favourite Boccalino and the outsider Boris Godunov. Ultimately it was the young prospective rider Cheryl Schoch with Boccalino, trained by Philipp Schärer for the Chevalex stable, who prevailed over Carina Schneider with Boris Godunov. The protégés of prominently represented multiple German champion trainer Christian Freiherr von der Recke, held back in aristocratic manner and came forth to sixth.
Ariella Kaeslin wins the ‘Celebrity Skikjöring presented by CREDIT SUISSE’
At the end of the show races the eagerly awaited ‘Celebrity Skikjöring presented by CREDIT SUISSE’ enthralled with high-calibre participants! Six Swiss stars from the international sports and TV scene boldly demonstrated their skiing skills behind the noble mounted race horses from the racing stables of Anthony Middleton, Christian Freiherr von der Recke, Philipp Schärer, Andreas Schärer and Dagmar Geissmann! With speeds of up to 50km/h, Olympic medallist Nicola Spirig (triathlon) and European champion Ariella Kaeslin (artistic gymnast) competed against no fewer than four men: downhill world champion Bruno Kernen (alpine skiing) seemed to have an advantage at the beginning due to his experience. He and seven times Ironman-Zurich winner Ronnie Schildknecht (triathlon), Olympic silver medallist and multiple world champion Thomas Frischknecht (mountainbike) as well as the successful and very popular SRF TV moderator Sven Epiney gave their best. However, in the end Ariella Kaeslin crossed the finishing line as the undisputed winner. On the harness of the gelding Sano di Pietro, ridden by Karin Zwahlen, the artistic gymnast was able to rejoice at her success. The high-class grey, trained by Andreas Schärer in Zurich-Dielsdorf for Anton and Verena Kräuliger, will again be among the favourites on Sunday in the White Turf Skikjöring.
Illuminated Grand Finale
After the captivating racing events and matching the evening’s prelude, a magnificent laser show illuminated the night sky above the frozen lake of St. Moritz for the Grand Finale with spectacular light and fire effects! The funfair ended for the spectators in the heated tents on the frozen lake with warm drinks and superb delicacies married with infectious après-ski music by star DJ JAYBEE.
Party atmosphere until the wee hours of the morning
All the spectators who had managed to secure themselves one of the coveted admission tickets in advance for the attractive event package in the VIP tent, with welcome cocktail and an exclusive dinner, thoroughly enjoyed the race party in the VIP tent with music by LOU BEGA, the ‘king of mambo’. The internationally renowned music star provided a sparkling dancing atmosphere!
With a total of more than 5’000 visitors on the frozen lake, among them about 80 international media representatives as well as radio and TV teams, the Night Turf St. Moritz premiere was a huge success for the organizers.
Further information at: www.nightturf.com
Press office St. Moritz Racing Association – Night Turf
WOEHRLE PIROLA Marketing and Communication AG
Via Grevas 6c · P.O. Box 19 · CH – 7500 St. Moritz, www.woehrlepirola.ch