Meet Our Officials for 2019
Gerd Sickinger was born 1950 in Stuttgart. Beginning at the age of 10, he was an active competitor in multiple disciplines and he became a state-certified riding instructor. In his profession as a lawyer, Mr. Sickinger is also a sworn expert-witness for horse-breeding, -keeping and -judging. He is also a judge for competitions including Show Jumping to the highest level, dressage up to Grand Prix, and eventing up to class L and has judged the BKB Bundeschampionat in Warendorf, Germany. Gerd Sickinger is married and father of 2 sons.
Matthias Granzow was born in 1976 in Waren / Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and he lives in Münster / North Rhine-Westphalia. Matthias is married and has 4 children. He comes from an equestrian and horse breeding family. He earned his education at the state stud Redefin and has been an internationally successful show jumping rider with many victories and placements. Highlights of his career include a victory in the World Cup competition in Tallinn and top Derby placements in Hamburg and Hickstead. In 2005 he was awarded the gold badge in German riding and since 2010 has also been a judge. Beginning in 2011, Matthias has been one of the German Equestrian Federation officials (judge, discipline expert, & test rider) for the Stallion Performance Tests.
Josef Freese lives near Visbek, North Germany, where he has his private barn "Sportpferde Freese", a Training and Tournament Stable housing 50 horses. In earlier days Josef competed in both Dressage and Show Jumping, and in 1997 he was awarded the Golden Reitabzeichen in both disciplines for his achievements - a rare combination. Today, Josef focusses primarily on the training and development of the Dressage Horse, following the Classical Training Methods. Josef is also in demand giving clinics for riders, both through North Germany and Internationally. His relationship with the Oldenburg Verband is long standing, both as a judge and a breeder of quality horses.
Sebastian Rohde is a breeder who is devoted to the training and the commercialization of young horses. He got his excellent knowledge out of his experience as a rider for ponies and as a Young Rider. He was internationally successful up to Grand-Prix level and multiple medal winner with the team at the European Championships.
Dr. Ludwig Christmann
Dr. Ludwig Christmann began his employment with the Hanoveraner Verband in 1984. He worked for many years as Deputy Breeding Director. In 1996 he obtained his doctorate degree with “The development of breeding values based on the evaluation of mares in studbook inspections and mare performance tests.” He has been editor of Hannoveraner Jarbuch Hengste since 1999 and is a member of the Interstallion working group of the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses. In 2002 Dr. Christmann became managing director for the Verband’s breeding abroad. Dr. Christmann is married, and he and his wife have three adult daughters, two of whom are riders. In his spare time he breeds his own horses and currently has three Hanoverians at home.
Marion is a Grand Prix rider in Germany and holds a teaching degree and a "Pferdeirtschaftmeister" (master’s degree allowing students to apprentice on her farm) from the University of Bielefeld. She also received the prestigious "Golden Riding Award" for 10 wins in classes of 1.40m or more from the German Federation. Now living in Canada, Marion has shown successfully from Bromont to Spruce Meadows. Besides training and developing horses, teaching riders and matching horses with clients, Marion also teaches clinics around the world here in Canada, United States, Costa Rica and Hong Kong.
Jessica resides in Battle Ground, Washington. She is the recipient of the USDF Bronze, Silver, and Gold medals plus the Freestyle Gold Bar, and has had multiple “Horse of the Year” placings. She has coached riders from Training level to FEI with several winning championships in the NW and earning their USDF medals. Her calendar is currently filled with her own competition riding, a training & lesson program at Emerald Valley, and a growing number of dressage clinics from Alaska to South Carolina. Jessica competed her Welsh cob stallion North Forks Cardi from Training level through the Grand Prix, winning several CDI's and a National Championship for the Grand Prix Freestyle. She now competes her Hanoverian stallion Diamondhead in the small tour as well as several client horses up through the Prix St. Georges.