Talents of Ireland

Despite his young age, Bertram Allen is recognized as one of the best and talented riders in the world

  • #ireland
  • #jumping
  • #young riders
  • #juniores
  • #WEG
  • #european championship YR jun

Susanna Cottica Animo

Seeing him ride really leaves you open-mouthed. He is an exceptional talent. Yet Bertram Allen is one of the most modest guys you will meet in the sport. He is quiet, bordering on shy, but at the same time, despite his young age, is very thoughtful and mature. Bertram, born in 1995, actually lives all by himself in Hünxe, Germany, while his dad, mum, three sisters and three brothers, in the age range of 7 to 19, still live in Wexford, Ireland where Bertram was born and grew up. "Six of the seven siblings ride but only Betram, the second born, and Harry, born in 2001 and second to last born, take part in competitions – recounts their mother Geraldine – Harry attends boarding school. He returns home on Wednesday afternoon, a day on which he manages to ride his ponies, and he spends the whole of the weekend at the stables where he rides his six ponies. We have a stable near our house where we keep all our horses and old ponies. The ponies are passed from brother to brother and we keep them forever. My husband and I divide our time between Bertram's stable in Germany and our home commitments. We are extremely busy but we do everything possible to always be there for our children". When he was 16, Bertram moved to Germany for a few months to improve his jumping skills but once he'd settled there he decided to stay: “I went to Germany to ride for a few months and I am still here...”. In fact his parents bought the stable from Jessica Kuerten who was moving to France. So, just sixteen, Bertram found himself in the position of having to manage himself and his new activity. Bertram is lucky enough to be located about twenty minutes by truck from the stable of Marcus Ehning, who then became his trainer. Bertram belongs to the Young Riders Academy, a program conceived for young talented show jumpers, under the patronage of the European Equestrian Federation (EEF), with the cooperation of the International Jumping Riders Club (IJRC). During this training program, Bertram's trainer and mentor is Marcus Ehning. Bertram Allen grew up in a family of horse people by tradition. His parents in fact had always bred racehorses and so from the age of eight he started riding ponies in the countryside and on hunts, as is the custom in Ireland. From the start, he had the good fortune to be guided by Billy Twomey, one of the best Irish riders. It is thanks to him that Bertram was brought up as a rider, eventually going on to win the European pony title in 2010.

Since 2010, Bertram has achieved a great deal and today, aged only twenty, he is one of the top riders in the world and manages his stable with professionalism and vision. While he jumps on the top circuits of the world with his champion horses such as Molly Malone and Romanov, the work at his stable mainly focuses on the young horses that he buys with the aim of bringing them to the highest sporting levels. He is certainly not short of skills and reaches his goals: one example out of the many is the female Barnike, winner under his saddle for two years in a row for six and seven-year-olds of the world title at Lanaken, a first in the history of the World Championship for Young Horses in show jumping. The mare was purchased by the German Jürgen Budde for his young daughter Laureen. Molly Malone was also bought at a young age. Bertram loves Molly a lot… “Dad bought her as a five-year-old at the Sunshine Tour after he was told that she had jumped something like 14 out of 15 clears down there. Molly is so sweet in the stable and when you ride her she is a serious worker. The more she is worked the better she gets. In his stable, it's all about the comfort of the horses. Everything is simple and natural”. All of Bertram's horses are turned out in the huge grass fields at his yard. With them is his favourite pony Magic Shadow who is now retired and is out in the field every day enjoying life. This natural way of keeping the horses happy is the basic concept of his way of training and keeping the horses fit and sound. “The best thing is to keep them fit and to keep their brains right with cantering them outside a lot” Bertram says. “I try to take them around the woods here or on the gallop track or I work them on the grass field. I always try to do something different with them. I think it's good for them mentally as they spend so many days of their lives in the arena". Riding is easy for Bertram, it's natural and simple: “You have to be dedicated, relaxed and quiet. Horses have to live and work in a simple, natural way. You have to do what is necessary to be where you want to be. You have to improve yourself by learning from the best, and then the opportunities will come…!

Info Bertram Allen