Carine Poentis decided to change mounts for a short while. More specifically, for the duration of the Rallye Aïcha des Gazelles du Maroc, which the pony pairs world No. decided to tackle this year. “At a year before the world championships, I thought it would be a good idea to have something else to think about”, states the Gazelle of Team 179 (Carine POENTIS / Sophie CLANET - Exm company).
She then naturally thought of the Rallye to prepare herself mentally and shut herself “in a bubble where I can think about something else”, but also to celebrate the 30th anniversary of her family business, Exm Company, which is featured on her vehicle along with the French equestrian team.
The Rallye and the World Equestrian Championships have several things in common, beginning with the duration of the event (eight days), in addition to “the constant effort required”. “At the top level we’re not trying to beat the other competitors, but to be the best we can be on the given terrain”: a good mentality philosophy for the Rallye. “Driving also requires a great deal of concentration”, observes Carine, who adds: “You have to pay constant attention”. After an “intense and great day in the dunes, she notes that it is also important to “be very precise, like when training ponies”.
The world No. 1 is also delighted to be “out of my microcosm”. “I’ve met some great people from very different backgrounds and that is one of the things that makes this adventure so interesting”, continues Carine, already thinking about coming back to the Rallye, but “this time to perform!”