Jos Struys: “I never find it boring”

Who doesn’t know him? He is a familiar face at national and international competitions and so too at CDI Lier. He has been working there since the first edition. Without him, no rider would be able to start, as he is responsible for opening and closing the arena. We are talking about Jos Struys.

Jos Struys
CDI Lier 2023
© DigiShots

What he likes most about CDI Lier? “The people and the stewards, I’ve known them for years.” He sees all the horses very closely and does his task with concentration. “I keep an eye on everything. I am not allowed to move and I watch carefully what the judges are doing.” And that is important. “I noticed once that the judge’s bell stopped working. I have to keep an eye on that.” Whether what he does is boring? “No, I never find it boring.”

Jos is a real horse lover and thanks to his work he has been to many places. “I like being at hotels. It’s nice and here they also have a very nice hotel.” Does he ever go on holiday? “This is my holiday, I just grew into it that way. I do get busier and busier, because it’s hard to get volunteers.” But Jos doesn’t seem to mind.

When not at work, Jos can be found among the horses. “I have three horses I take care of sometimes. I go there by bike. One of them is as tall as 1.80m. I give them attention and sometimes I have to put blankets on. My sponsor Onori made those.” Proudly, Jos shows a photo. “That horse is attached to me, and I to the horse. When he sees me, he is happy. Horses have to get to know you.”

What he likes best about his work? “That I can be close to the horses. I hope to continue doing this work for years to come.” And we hope so too!