For the Dutchman, team silver medallist at the London Olympics, the World Cup is not a priority and he will ride only a few qualifiers this season, preferring instead to focus on other competitions.
The 41-year-old is rarely centre stage, yet his standing in the world is far from fortuitous.
Houtzager announced his arrival on the scene in 2002 when he won the Dublin Grand Prix with Jacomar.
He went on to place regularly with different horses in big classes. A turning point in his career came in 2008 when he was crowned Holland's vice champion and booked his ticket to the Beijing Olympics.
The Dutch team ended fifth while Houtzager finished seventh in the individual standings.
He became the national vice champion again in 2011 before joining the national team in London where he had a big hand in their second-placed finish. In the individual standings, he came in ninth.
Houtzager was associated to Sterrehof’s Tamino, the horse who gave him victory in the Gucci Grand Prix of the Gucci Paris Masters organized by EEM World, while his current stable includes three Grand Prix horses, Tamino, Opium and Voltaire, supported by Uppity.