THE WORLD'S TOP ATHLETES Brazil - Rodrigo Pessoa - Equestrian POWER Issue 2013




Rodrigo Pessoa




Born in Paris in 1972, Rodrigo Pessoa is a Brazilian equestrian and show jumper who followed in the footsteps of his father, Nelson Pessoa, also an award-winning equestrian and show jumper.  Traveling with his father to the shows, he began riding when he was four, and by the time he was nine, participated in his first competition.  With his father as his coach, his first win came at the age of 12 in Belgium, where he earned the title of Champion of the Pony Class.

When he was 16, Mr. Pessoa began competing in the Grand Prixs in Europe, and won the junior European Championship competition.  He joined the Brazilian Olympic team in 1992, and at19 was one of the youngest riders ever to compete in an Olympic Game.  He has since competed in six Olympic Games, winning two bronze medals in Atlanta and Sydney for Team Jumping and a gold medal in Athens for Individual Riding.  Mr. Pessoa was the first person in the history of Brazilian equestrianism to win an Olympic gold medal, and was the flag bearer for Brazil at the 2012 Olympics.

The winner of over 70 Grand Prix competitions, Mr. Pessoa was also the World Cup Champion in 1998, 1999 and 2000.  In addition to his considerable accomplishments in the field of equestrianism, Mr. Pessoa speaks seven languages.

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