Riding at the stables started with once per week, then twice, three times, then four. In the end it was time for him to have his own first pony: Sonja. “It wasn’t easy”, says Thierry. “It took me five competitions to gain 1 point in dressage, which allowed me to start jumping! But she’d always stopped instead of jumping. It was a bit easier with Monte Carlo, my next pony. But my father said I could only go cross-country once I had reached both Z-dressage and Z-jumping. Eventually we reached Z2 (Advanced Medium) in dressage and ZZ (advanced) in jumping”, says Thierry.
In 2015, Thierry was selected for both dressage and eventing at the KNHS talent plan selection day. He chose eventing, a discipline which fitted very well with his stallion pony Zapp. “My pony riding career ended nicely with a second place with Zapp at the Dutch Championship in Barchem in 2016”, says Thierry. A new horse, Piet, then came into the picture for Thierry, from Martin Lips – and then things started to go fast: in 2017, Thierry rode Piet in the juniors team at the European Championship in Millstreet, and again in 2018 in Fontainebleau.
Thierry completed his secondary education at the Stedelijk Gymnasium in Nijmegen, and has been studying Business Administration at Radboud University in Nijmegen since 2018.