RTL Extra exposes scandal surrounding riding star Ludger Beerbaum

January 16, 2022 – 3:21 pm hour

Ludger Beerbaum Methods

A new scandal in the equestrian sport. After nearly two years of research, team RTL Extra and investigative journalist Günter Wallraff have successfully uncovered the use of illegal training methods in equestrian sports and violations of the Animal Welfare Act (now broadcast on RTL+). The focus of the finds is German riding star Ludger Bierbaum – in the video.

Exclusive video footage of horse beating

Four Olympic golds, two world titles and many other awards – Ludger Beerbaum is considered one of the most successful showjumpers in the world. With his company “Ludger Beerbaum Stables” in Riesenbeck, he built an equestrian empire. However, there are obvious violations of animal care in the facility.

Reading tip: The network’s reaction to the Bierbaum scandal

RTL Extra has exclusive video footage from an insider close to Bierbaum that suggests this. Ludger Beerbaum is shown jumping over an obstacle with his horse while an employee hits the animal’s front legs with a pole. This method, known as “bars”, is a violation of the Animal Welfare Act and is also prohibited in this form by the laws of the German Equestrian Federation (FN).

The purpose of the punch is to painfully teach the horse to raise its front legs and avoid touching the obstacle posts. In a later statement, Bierbaum said the training method offered was “impactful,” which was also approved by the Forces Nouvelles. This is a weak form of parallel bars, in which the horse should be encouraged to jump higher only by holding or touching another bar. Anyway, it shouldn’t be hit like that.

Reading tip: PETA files criminal charges against Bierbaum

Secret reporter: ‘The animal’s pain is unbearable’

Maximilian Pick, an animal care appraiser and veterinarian, comes to the conclusion when examining the available materials that the horses in this case are clearly forbidden and have not been touched. FN’s rule set is amazing as well, which only differentiates between “bar” in the sense of active hitting and “touch” as touching.

How important is the welfare of the horses at Ludger Beerbaum? Is animal suffering acceptable for success and money? Additional reporter Sina Meyer goes in search of clues and sneaks into the role of an intern in the horse tycoon’s marketing department for her classified research. As an employee, the reporter wants to witness for herself the prohibited training methods. In addition to the multi-edge wooden poles, which according to insiders are used for the forbidden training style, she discovers other forbidden poles with suspicious tips that she can’t customize. But according to Bierbaum, these found shafts are not used in training.

“The pain inflicted on the animal by the parallel beams is unbearable. Some showjumping players make millions from these horses. Even nearly 30 years after the Bar scandal in the 1990s, it seems that the animals could not have been beaten,” says an RTL Extra reporter. It bans sports: “I hope our research will increase pressure on officials and that animals will be better protected in the future.”

The RTL Extra team requested a statement on all allegations regarding the Ludger Beerbaum jump car, but initially received no answers.

Ludger Bierbaum commented on the facts on Wednesday as follows

Meanwhile, Ludger Beerbaum commented extensively on our research. In a statement on his website, he rejected the allegations. There it says: “RTL extra’s contribution is clearly false in many ways, defamatory and defamatory. Of course we will take legal action against it. It is unacceptable that my private property is secretly photographed.”

The rest of the statement is verbatim here:

Regarding the allegations against me and my team: Horse care is the highest priority for me and my team. Only a horse that is appropriately handled, cared for, fed, trained and managed can achieve athletic performance. Horses are our capital, which we take care of day in and day out.

The sights on the riding circuit described in the article have nothing to do with parallel bars. This is allowed by touch, which is performed by an experienced and experienced equine specialist. The object shown in the video meets the requirements of the German Equestrian Federation for permissible touch: no more than three meters and a weight of no more than two kilograms.

I run my stable as an open stable, where groups of visitors are guests every day, clients pick up food for their horses, and “apprentices” are also welcome. Here he rides on openly visible places and the daily training is completed. Nothing is hidden or forbidden.

The fact that the “research” that allegedly lasted for two years was able to show only four scenes in which a horse appears to be touched, shows that this permissible method of training is used very rarely in our country and is not part of our daily work.

The “polygons” found by the alleged apprentice in the barn are wooden poles used exclusively for the construction and repair of electric fences. The insulators for fence strips attached to the posts can be clearly seen in the film. Once it is claimed that these are used for parallel bars on horses, this is not true.

The same applies to columns with “deputies” in the attic. I can only say that these items have been around for years. These are from stock purchased from snags and ironed out to not be used. It is also not used in training with horses. How now that one of these parts, polished and clean, lies between the shafts of the usual snags, I can only guess. To me, it’s clear that one of these columns was explicitly placed there to contribute. We will do more research on this topic.

Furthermore, I declare:

My 2004 Olympic gold medal was withdrawn not on the basis of doping, but on drugs that were prohibited at the time.

The part on the training field called the “Styrofoam board” is a completely normal daily use pickup stand. This is also an indication that the contributor lacks sufficient experience.

An RTL spokeswoman:

“We consider our publications appropriately.

Our informant reported abuses in the handling of horses at Ludger Beerbaum ranch. These grievances justify the use of the camera in the yard.”

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