The riding training cadre of the dragoon regiment no. 3 in the former imperial and royal military riding and driving training institute Schlosshof organised the Marchfeld Castle Ride again this year – already for the 30th time. This ride took place under the patronage of former Federal Minister Dr. Werner Fasslabend and under the patronage of Hungary’s special ambassador Archduke Georg Habsburg.
The event took place from 26 to 29 May 2023 in cooperation and with the support of Mag. Klaus Panholzer, Managing Director of Schloss Schönbrunn Betriebs- und Kulturges.m.b.H., the heads of the event department, the animal department of Schloss Hof, the municipalities, the Federal Forests and the regional hunting community.
This year the castle ride was again included in the NOEPS Outdoor Riders Cup with the highest number of points. The 30th anniversary castle ride/drive was opened on Friday in the festive setting of Orangerie West in Schlosshof with a champagne reception.
Governor Johanna Mikl-Leitner sent us all the best and warm greetings for the implementation of the event, the organisation and the participants. In addition to the more than 150 participants, accompanying persons, guests and guests of honour from culture and sport as well as the surrounding communities, the organiser Hans Günter Ebetshuber was able to welcome, among others, Dr. Werner Fasslabend with his wife, Vice-President of the Austrian Sports Teachers Association Peter Schimanek with his wife as well as the Managing Director of Marchegg Castle Andreas Pataki with his wife.
As a supporter and patron since the first hour of our traditional regiment (almost 35 years), Dr. Werner Fasslabend was honoured with the golden badge of honour with green laurel wreath. In his subsequent speech, he spoke about Prince Eugene, who reformed the cavalry, and about the riding and driving instructors’ institute in Schlosshof. Even in the early days when the Schlösserverein began to activate Schlosshof, Dr. Werner Fasslabend and Kom.Rat. Bibersteiner were of the opinion that the Dragoon Regiment No. 3 belonged at Schlosshof. He thanked the commander of DR 3 Hans Günter Ebetshuber for his tireless efforts, his commitment for over 30 years and for setting an example for all cavalrymen. The regimental bugler Zgsf. Günter Ringhofer was promoted to sergeant-at-arms by Commander Hans Günter Ebetshuber in recognition of his services to the Traditional Dragoon Regiment No. 3.
Afterwards, the opportunity was taken to visit the exhibition in the castle and the various special competitions in the castle grounds.
By riding on historical ground, the riders learn “interesting facts” about Austrian history through our info sheets; by delivering a dispatch at the midday rest, this knowledge, after opening it, could score extra points.
The competitions were again held in two categories this year. The A-competition with a total distance of approx. 80 km for both days, with special stages on the way, directly in Schlosshof or during the lunch break in Schloss Eckartsau or Schloss Marchegg. Among other things, the Haringsee shooting range was ridden to, where the k.u.k. officer’s pistol was used for resting and shooting. Rast und Gasser officers’ pistols were used to score further points.
The special tasks included fording, hand-horse riding, overcoming natural obstacles in the group, individual jumping over natural obstacles on the next day, estimating distances, cone course for the carriages, reading the map, etc., where points could also be collected.
Before the award ceremony, KR Gerold Dautzenberg, former President of NOEPS, was presented with the Golden Badge of Honour with green laurel wreath for his support and promotion of the Marchfeld Castle Ride.
12 participants (competition A) did well in the special tests and completed the total distance of approx. 80 km without any mistakes. Of these, 4 participants were proud to receive the cavalry performance badge for orienteering and trail riding in bronze.
Also this year, after placing three times, 3 participants achieved the cavalry performance badge for orienteering and trail riding in silver, presented by the managing director of Marchegg Castle, Andreas Pataki, and the commander of DR 3, Colonel Hans Günter Ebetshuber, bearer of the golden badge of honour of the Lower Austrian Equestrian Sports Association.
The competition B with a total of approx. 50 km on both days was well received by the 35 participants and was rated separately. Furthermore, three carriages – among them two two-in-hand and one four-in-hand with four white Lipizzan horses – completed the long distance of 80 km.
The highest military score was achieved for the second time by OLt. Ivor Schiller (Dragoon Regiment No. 5), who also completed the course flawlessly for his regiment. The honorary cup of Karl Habsburg was presented to him for another year. The performance of DR 5 from Styria, which entered the competition with two groups, deserves special mention. DR 3 and DR 4 were also represented on horseback.
Unfortunately, no other cavalrymen from the Austrian Cavalry Association took part this year. We would be very pleased if, in addition to the strong civilian cavalry groups, members of the Austrian Cavalry Association would again be present on horseback at the 31st Castle Ride from 30 May to 2 June 2024.
Once again, we would like to thank the Lower Austrian Equestrian Federation for their support through President Petra Choc and Gerold Dautzenberg as well as the Geiger family’s company “Die Werbegestalten”. A big thank you goes of course again to all our helpers, without whom such an event would not be possible.
After the gala dinner in the restaurant “Zum weißen Pfau”, the organiser handed over the stable chains, stiches, certificates and prizes.
Results of 30th Marchfeld Castle Ride
Competition A (approx. 80 km in two days)
- place: Dr. Yvonne Stark-Ziegler, Vanessa Mitterer, Carmen Merwald, Gerda Göttlich, Marie Theres Tomasich
- place: Daniela Schäfer and Otto Buchheit
- place: Christoph Allgäuer and Sabine Fritz
Competition B (approx. 50 km in two days)
- place: Caroline Geiger, Finian Geiger, Carla Hartberger, Sophie Mikula, Lea Hager
- place: Olt. Ivor Schiller, Ptf. Evelin Schiller, Korp. Alexandra Thür
- place: Michaela Pinisch, Jennifer Schirk, Sarah Maynard
Competition carriages 80 and 50 km
- place (80 km): Sonja Högler, Erwin Baischer, Florentine Högler, Motiz Ditrich
- place (50 km): Norbert Linsbichler, Michaela Gutschka, Beatrix and Eric Graf
- place (50 km): Iris Muhm and Lydia Glatz
Photos: Carla Hartberger, Erwin Nader and private