Well another tough course set by Switzerland’s Rolf Ludi. Tough lines and very little room to breath, riders were again challenged by today’s course. A few more qualified through to the jump off then yesterday. Out of the 56 entries on the start list, ten comb combinations qualified for the jump off, including Olympic medalists Jeroen Dubbeldam, Marc Houtzager, Gerco Schroder and winner Ludger Beerbaum not to mention WEG notables Marcus Ehning and Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum.
The track was difficult with tight lines and challenging angles. The course’s difficulty meant a few strong combinations didn’t make it through such as Denis Lynch and All Star, Katharina Offel and Fidji Island, Kevin Staut and Cheyenne HDC, Christian Ahlmann and Asca Z, Rolf-Goran Bengtsson and Carusso la Silla as well as Hans-Dieter Dreher and his newly acquired Colore.
Nonetheless, a ten horse jump off would prove to be competitive enough to say the least and Dutch Silver medalist Marc Houtzager was the first to start things off with Sterrehof’s Opium. Marc and Opium were fast and clean, with a time of 38.26 seconds, which put the Dutch duo into the lead.
Switzerland’s Christina Liebherr was second but a disappointing 4 faults would keep one Swiss rider from winning. California-born German rider Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and the aptly named gelding Unbelievable. Unfortunately for Meredith, the German combo were just 0.02 seconds behind Marc’s time, putting them in second place with a time of 38.28. So close!!
Switzerland’s Werner Muff, leading rider for the show at the moment, was next to go. Hopes of a Swiss victory were evident as the crowd grew silent. Fashioning his armband, Werner had a frustrating 8 fault score and a time of 38.35 seconds. Another Swiss off the list.
Ukraine’s winner of the 2012 Global Champions Tour Finale in Abu Dhabi, Katharina Offel and Fidji Island, were next in the ring, sure to give Marc a run for his money. But alas, it was not to be, with a surprising 12 fault score.
Gerco Schroder and the newly named Seoul were next up with a good chance at matching his Dutch team mates time. It was interesting to see all of Gerco’s mounts with new names for the new year. Eurocommerce has now been omitted from the horses’ registered names. Gerco and Seoul beat Marc and Opium’s time with a fast and efficient round, stopping the clock at 37.77 seconds. Very well executed, but with Ludger, Luciana and Jeroen Dubbeldam to come, would it be enough?
Alas, it would not! Ludger was next up aboard his stunning bay stallion Chaman. Clearly fixated on a win, the four-time Olympic gold medalist made quick work of the jump off, crossing the finish line with a time of 36.55 seconds.
In typical Ludger fashion, the German combo looked to be in a strong place for the win.
A truly beautiful round by the leggy Brazilian beauty; Miss Luciana Diniz. Truly textbook but unfortunately not fast enough to match Ludger’s time. Luciana and Fit for Fun finished with a time of 39.82 seconds, putting her under Meredith, Marc and Gerco.
Second last to go was Olympic gold medalist Jeroen Dubbeldam aboard the feisty grey BMC Quality Time. Making the shortened track look easy, the Dutch combination finished smooth, perhaps too smooth, with a time of 37.97.
So all hopes were raised when Swiss beauty Alexandra Fricker came in to finish the class aboard Albfuehren’s Memphis. Alexandra has been serving up some strong rounds over the last two days and today was no exception. Clean and relatively fast, Alexandra and Memphis stopped the clock at 38.05 seconds, which would be good enough for 4th place.
The Swiss crowd cheered for Alexandra regardless and the young Swiss miss offered her mount a well-deserved pat for a job well done.
Congratulations to Ludger and Chaman for a great win! A great set up for tomorrow’s big day!!
LGT Private Banking Prix
1.50 FEI Art 238.2.2 (Zurich, Switzerland)
|B 14-j.H v.Baloubet du Rouet/M.v.I Love You/KWPN/MEX01925/B: Winter-Schulze, Made||GER|
|B 12-j.W v.Thunder van de Zuuthoeve/M.v.Lancer II/BWP/NED41598/B: Gevi Internatio||NED|
|3.||55||Quality Time TN||Dubbeldam, Jeroen||NED|
|SCH 11-j.H v.Quantum/M.v.Cantus/HOLST/NED40905/B: H.J.Nijhof||NED|
|4.||79||Albfuehren’s Memphis||Fricker, Alexandra||SUI|
|B 12-j.H v.Quinar/M.v.Carthago/HOLST/NED07642/B: Hofgut Albführen GmbH||SUI|
|5.||58||Sterrehof’s Opium||Houtzager, Marc||NED|
|B 17-j.H v.Polydor/M.v.Bormio/WESTF/GER23567/B: Stoeterij Sterrehof B.V.||NED|
|B 12-j.W v.Manhattan/M.v.Democraat/KWPN/GER42182/B: Windward Farm||GER|
|7.||67||Fit for Fun||Diniz, Luciana||POR|
|F 9-j.S v.For Pleasure/M.v.Fabriano/HANN/103IB23/B: G.R.O.W. Horses & Jünger, Ral||POR|
|8.||88||L B Con Grazia CH||Liebherr, Christina||SUI|
|B 10-j.S v.Con Spirito R/M.v.Karondo V. Schlösslihof/CH/102OR73/B: La Baumetta Sa||SUI|
|SCH 10-j.W v.Landjunge/M.v.Carthago/HOLST/102QP50/B: Muff Werner||SUI|
|10.||122||Fidji Island||Offel, Katharina||UKR|
|F 12-j.S v.For Feeling/M.v.Wanderer/HANN/GER44709/B: Llc Vian Group||UKR|
|B 11-j.S v.Calvados/M.v.Concorde/KWPN/102QD90/B: Robert Smith||GBR|
|B 14-j.S v.Sandro Boy/M.v.Landadel/BAY/GER40673/B: Winley Farm Llc & Gölkel, Judi||GER|
Today’s five-star event in Basel saw a solid and competitive collection of horses and riders battle it out for the first big event of 2013. Fourty-three combinations in total came out for the Grand Prix of H. Moser & Cie but only 9 came back after the two rounds for the jump off. Half of the 15 horses and riders that were clear after the first round were Olympic combinations, not to mention Olympic medalists Gerco Schroder with Eurocommerce London as well as Scott Brash and Hello Sanctos.
Those clear in the first round included Marc Houtzager and Sterrehof’s Tamino, Patrice Delaveau and Carinjo HDC, Denis Lynch and All Star, Ludger Beerbaum and Chaman as well as Manuel Anon and Rackel Chavannaise. But it was these five riders as well as Switzerland’s Clarissa Crotta who would fail to qualify through to the Jump off after faults in the second round.
The nine combinations to make it through for the jump-off were Penelope Leprevost with Nayana, Edwina Tops-Alexander and Cevo Itot du Chateau, Roger-Yves Bost with Castle Forbes Myrtille Paulois, Luciana Diniz and Lennox, Scott Brash with Hello Sanctos, Gerco Schroder and Eurocommerce London, Rolf-Goran Bengtsson and Casall la Silla, Emanuele Guadiano and Cocoshynsky and Switzerland’s very own Alexander Fricker with Albfuehren’s Paille.
It was a fast and no-nonsense jump off with France’s leading lady Penelope Leprevost starting things off with 4 faults aboard Nayana. Her fellow Frenchman and Nations Cup team mate, Roger-Yves Bost, would follow and set a time very difficult to beat. Bosty and Castle Forbes Myrtille Paulois had a very fast time of 31.50 seconds. Everyone sighed once the notorious Frenchman was finished; the chase was on.
Both Edwina and Itot du Chateau along with Gerco and Eurocommerce London, legendary combinations known for their speed and agility, failed to beat Bosty’s time despite their bests efforts. Then the leggy Brazilian beauty Luciana Diniz entered the ring with her Olympic mount Lennox. Sure enough, Luciana would blow Bosty’s time out of the water with a speedy 30.85 seconds.
Luciana was overjoyed, blowing kisses to the crowd and adorning her lovely bay with plenty of praise. She knew her time was a strong one!
Luciana barely tapped the breaks and set a time that Rolf-Goran Bengtsson, Emanuele Guadiano, Scott Brash and Alexandra Fricker would be unable to beat.
Well done to Luciana and Lennox for their fantastic efforts today!!
Grand Prix of H. Moser & Cie (Basel, Switzerland)…
|B 12-j.W v.Lifestyle (old)/M.v.Grammus/OLDBG/102OK46/B: Diniz, Ornaldo & Luciana|
|2.||56||Castle Forbes Myrtille Paulois||Bost, Roger Yves||FRA|
|B 13-j.S v.Dollar du Murier/M.v.Grand Veneur/SF/FRA41326/B: Mme Georgina Forbes e|
|3.||121||Cevo Itot du Chateau||Tops-Alexander, Edwina||AUS|
|F 17-j.W v.Le Tot de Semilly/M.v.Galoubet A/SF/FRA10184/B: E Alexander & Stal Top|
|B 10-j.S v.Cornet Obolensky/M.v.Popcorn/WESTF/102YQ85/B: Equita Kft|
|F 11-j.H v.Nabab de Reve/M.v.Chin Chin/BWP/BEL40955/B: Silest B.V.|
|6.||108||Albfuehren’s Paille||Fricker, Alexandra||SUI|
|F 10-j.S v.Kannan/SF/FRA45663/B: Hofgut Albführen GmbH|
|B 12-j.S v.Royal Feu/M.v.Narcos II/SF/FRA47233/B: Madame Geneviève Megret|
|8.||92||Hello Sanctos||Brash, Scott||GBR|
|B 11-j.W v.Quasimodo vd Molendreef/M.v.Nabab de Reve/SBS/BEL42500/B: Lord & Lady|
|9.||76||Casall la Silla||Bengtsson, Rolf-Göran||SWE|
|B 14-j.H v.Caretino/M.v.Lavall I/HOLST/GER27997/B: Verband der Züchter des Holste|
|10.||51||Rackel Chavannaise||Anon, Manuel||ESP|
|B 12-j.S v.Voltaire/M.v.Papillon Rouge/SBS/BEL40628/B: Añon Team Horses S.L.|
|11.||65||West Side V Meerputhoeve||Crotta, Clarissa||SUI|
|F 14-j.W v.Baloubet du Rouet/M.v.Apollonios/BWP/BEL11524/B: Crotta Clarissa + Enz|
|12.||119||All Star||Lynch, Denis||IRL|
|B 10-j.H v.Argentinus/M.v.Alme/HANN/102UL65/B: Straumann, Thomas|
Well it seems that Christian will be able to hold onto the armband. This month, Christian remains in the top seat, with a little over a 100 point lead from Switzerland’s Gold medal champion Steve Guerdat. No doubt, Steve will be looking to regain his number one spot this month with two world cup events; Leipzig, Germany and Zurich, Switzerland as well as the 5-star event in Basel, Switzerland this weekend, of which both Christian and Steve are attending.
Nick Skelton has jumped back up to number 3, while pushing Germany’s Marcus Ehning down to number 4. Kevin Staut is still in the top five.
Edwina has further consolidated her position in the world as leading lady rider in number 6 while fellow female champion, Penelope Leprevost, has dropped out of the top ten, with the French darling settling into 11th position. The biggest move in the top ten was the charming Marc Houtzager, who jumped from 14th position to 9th position after a very strong December, going into 2013. Marc won the World Cup in London Olympia aboard his wonderful big bay, Tamino. This ensured him a 100 points and bumped him ahead of his Olympic team mate Gerco Schroder.
Sergio Alvarez Moya has made a surge over the last 6 weeks, jumping into 17th position and well within the top 20 while Ben Maher has dropped out of the top 20 and into 24th position, respectfully.
We’re happy to welcome Luciana Diniz into the top 30 and glad to see that Canada’s Eric Lamaze has managed to stay well within the race at number 28, despite not competing since the Spruce Meadows Masters Tournament in September.
Well done Riders!!
Jumping Rankings – N° 144 – 31/12/2012
|14||13||BOST, Roger Yves||FRA||2010|
|17||25||ALVAREZ MOYA, Sergio||ESP||1925|
|29||23||AFFONSO DE MIRANDA NETO, Alvaro||BRA||1705|
Well the 143rd World Rolex rankings has just been published and some big changes have occurred just before we close another amazing year and look to the wonders of 2013.
Sure enough, everyone in Geneva were right, for Germany’s very own Christian Ahlmann has taken over the World #1 spot just in time for his birthday next week. The 2010/2011 World Cup winner was the victor of Friday nights IJRC Top 10 Final in Geneva and it turned out to be just that extra little push he needed to place him at the very precipice of our sport leading into the new year.
But Christian is not the only one who has made big moves over the last month. His fellow countryman Marcus Ehning has jumped into the top 5, taking over 3rd position from his original number 7 spot.
Silver medalist Gerco Schroder (NED) has jumped up 12 spots on the rankings to place himself in the top 10. Moving from 22nd place to 10th in the world, it’s evident that despite legal battles continuing between Rabobank and Eurocommerce Holdings, Schroder has every intention of staying as competitive as ever. Clearly, Gerco has made every show he can attend count for his results speak for themselves.
Brazilian born Luciana Diniz also has also shaken up the rankings with a jump up to 31st in the world from 47th. The Portuguese jockey has seen a great surge in results with the return of her stunning stallion Winningmood as well as the consistent performances of the wonderful Lennox.
Three-time World Cup winner Rodrigo Pessoa has now jumped back into the top 50 with a spot in 44th place. This will be nice to know for the Brazilian jockey as he heads to Wellington, Florida soon for the Winter Equestrian Festival in the new year. His fellow countryman Alvaro de Miranda remains the leading Brazilian rider in 23rd position.
Canada’s Gold medalist Eric Lamaze will be happy to see he has remained in the top 30 despite his break from competition. Remaining in 28th position in the world, surely Eric will intend on adding to that has he plans a return to competition in January.
So who won’t be happy with the new rankings? Well, Nick Skelton has dropped down to 5th position from 2nd place in the world. America’s speed demons Richard Spooner and Rich Fellers have both dropped down in the rankings. Spooner to 19th position from 13th and Fellers to 27th position from 20th.
Silver medalist Maikel van der Vlueten won’t be too pleased with his departure from the top 50; moving from 42nd position to 51st in the world. Similarly, Brazilian-born Cassio Rivetti, who rides for the Ukraine, has also left to the top 50; dropping from 45th position to 53rd overall.
Nevertheless, the new year will bring plenty of competition and once again, with the 144th list due out in the new year, we shall plenty of changes once again.
Portugal’s Luciana Diniz left the rest of the field in her wake as she sailed to victory in the second 5* class in Abu Dhabi.
Riding her chestnut gelding Bluebuster, Luciana notched up a stylish first place on the 11-year-old. Underlining the speed of her win, she was second to go but held on to the lead throughout the rest of the class. Luciana and Bluebuster made the 1m50 course look effortless as she cleared the Gucci oxer and the triple before finishing in 61.54.
Kevin Staut, of France, on Cheyenne was second in 63.57 and was lucky not to have a rail down at the triple towards the end of the course. Dutch rider Marc Houtzager was third on the 11-year-old chestnut gelding Sterrehof’s Uppity coming home in 63.85. Johannes Ehning on Salvador and British rider William Funnell on Billy Congo were fourth and fifth in 63.88 and 64.11.
The atmosphere in the floodlit Al Forsan arena is mounting as the final Grand Prix of 2012 approaches. Leading home rider, Sheikh Shakboot bin Nahyan Al Nahyan, of the United Arab Emirates, who rode clear on his bay gelding Valentino Balia, has spoken of the privilege of hosting the climax of the GCT series in Abu Dhabi.
VIP guests watched the world class jumping action from the stylish lodges surrounding the arena and special pop-up retail shops by luxury brands Gucci and Jaeger-LeCoultre have proved a hit with visitors to the show.
The course for the second 5* class of the day caught out several top riders. Several clocked up 4 faults at the Jaeger-LeCoultre third fence and the first part of the triple running up to the finish line.
As the clock ticks towards Saturday’s Grand Prix final of the 2012 series, the top riders in the world will be in action again tomorrow.
2 Class 2: Abu Dhabi 2012 CSI5* 1.50m
Table A: Against the Clock
|2||Cheyenne 111 Z||Kevin Staut||4,600||0.00||63.57|
|3||Sterrehof’s Uppity||Marc Houtzager||3,450||0.00||63.85|
|4||Salvador V||Johannes Ehning||2,300||0.00||63.88|
|5||Billy Congo||William Funnell||1,380||0.00||64.11|
|6||Castle Forbes Myrtille Paulois||Roger-Yves Bost||1,035||0.00||64.27|
|7||Dadjak ter Puttenen||Ömer Karaevli||690||0.00||64.47|
|8||Quintus 81||Ahmad Saber Hamcho||575||0.00||64.73|
|9||All Star 5||Denis Lynch||460||0.00||64.87|
|10||VDL Groep Verdi||Maikel van der Vleuten||460||0.00||66.08|
|11||Diablo||Line K. Raaholt||230||0.00||72.41|
|12||Valentino Balia||Sheikh Shakboot Al Nahyan||230||1.00||78.04|
Well it was a great birthday weekend for Kevin, who celebrated his 32nd birthday on Thursday in Stuttgart with friends Rodrigo Pessoa, Michael Whitaker and Patrice Delaveau. The leading French rider, who is currently ranked 6th in the World beat Germany’s Marcus Ehning by 100th of a second in a very fast and very competitive jump off.
Kevin was amongst the best of the best today, with 8 out of the top 10 Rolex Ranked riders included in the start list.
11 riders qualified for the jump off; Kevin Staut, Marcus Ehning, Luciana Diniz, Jens Fredricson, Denis Lynch, Carsten-Otto Nagel, Ludger Beerbaum, his sister-in-law Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, Christian Ahlmann, Hans-Dieter Dreher and France’s leading lady rider Penelope Leprevost.
Meredith was the first clear of the 39 entries with her wonderful 9 year old mare Bella Donna. They tackled Christa Jung’s course with ease and proved to be well on their way to qualifying for the World Cup final in Gothenburg next April, an important goal of Meredith’s this season.
Jens Fredricson and the memorable Lunatic were the next clear round, after 5 horse and rider combinations. Carsten-Otto Nagel and his mare Corradina, a well-known combination who have been together for quite some time, came in the ring next to be the third combination clear.
It was great to see Olympic silver medalist Jur Vrieling and his beautiful bay stallion Bubalu, however Jung’s course proved too difficult for the combination as they surprisingly retired half way through the course.
It would be Luciana Diniz and her gorgeous grey stallion Winningmood, back from a short leave from competition due to a virus, who would be the next combination to post an effortless clear. This round was one of my favorites of the entire class. This combination is pure class; they looked as confident as ever.
Gold medalist Scott Brash and his Olympic mount Hello Sanctos had an unfortunate 4 faults in the last element of the triple combination. The triple combination proved to be difficult for many riders; Jessica Springsteen, Pilar Cordon, Gregory Wathelet, Patrice Delaveau, Pius Schwizer as well as Edwina Tops-Alexander.
I was disappointed to see Rolf-Goran leave the ring with 12 faults on Carusso LS La Silla and Laura Kraut with 8 faults on her lovely Olympic gold mount Cedric, however it was a very difficult course, said to be one of the most difficult we can expect to see of the season.
There were eleven clear rounds in total, six of which were German riders. Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and Marcus Ehing were included in those six German combinations to qualify. Might I remind you that both Meredith and Marcus are two of only three riders to have ever won the FEI Rolex World Cup three times.
Both Marcus and Meredith will surely be looking to qualify for the Finals in Gothenburg next April, for if either of them win, they will make history and become the first rider to ever win four World Cup Finals in total.
Meredith was first in the ring for the 11 horse/rider Jump-off, fashioning the German flag for the host nation. The crowd of 6,400 spectators gave her a huge warm applause as she entered with her Olympic mare Bella Donna; one of the youngest horses at the Olympic games this summer. The combination did not go fast and posted a modest time of 52.41. This time was sure to be beaten.
Next in the ring was Sweden’s Jens Fredricson aboard the aptly named Lunatic. The two were the first to attempt the tight right turn after the 3rd fence (Jump 11) and did so with success. They had set the time to beat. Carsten-Otto Nagel was in the ring after the Swedish combination and the experienced team were slower with a time of 45.27 seconds.
It was the lovely Luciana Diniz of Portugal and Winningmood who would beat Jens time. The Portuguese pair were super fast and attached the jump off from the first fence. We got a lovely smile from Luciana who was clearly very happy with the time and more then pleased to be back in action with her striking grey stallion.
It would be Germany’s very own Marcus Ehning who would come in straight after Luciana with his expressive bay mare Noltes Kuchengirl and leave her in the dust. Always the cool, calm and collected customer, Marcus once again proved to the crowd as well as all those of us watching via live stream why he obtains such respect and admiration from fellow riders. Marcus made quick work of the jump off with the tight right turn and a fast gallop of eight strides to the last fence, a solid blue wall. Ehning posted a time of 42.67.
Irishman Denis Lynch and fellow countryman Ludger Beerbaum and Hans-Dieter Dreher would attempt to beat Marcus’ time but to no avail. It would be France’s leading rider and past world number one, Kevin Staut, who would beat Marcus’ time by a mere 100th of second to post a winning time of 42.66.
This is a much deserved win for 32 year old Frenchman who was the only male rider to attend every World Cup event last year. Kevin did not miss one date on the 2011/2012 Western European League calender and clearly that effort paid off today.
It was an incredible jump-off, the true makings of an eventful 5th leg of the World Cup Western European League season and no doubt a great taste of what’s to come in Geneva next month.
ROLEX FEI World Cup Jumping 2012/2013
Grand Prix of Stuttgart presented by Mercedes-Benz, WALTER solar and BW-Bank
|1.||Silvana H D C||Staut, Kevin||FRA||Car (52000 EUR)||0 penalties 42.66 sec|
|2.||Noltes Küchengirl||Ehning, Marcus||GER||30000 EUR||0 penalties 42.67 sec|
|3.||Winningmood||Diniz, Luciana||POR||23000 EUR||0 penalties 43.90 sec|
|4.||Lunatic||Fredricson, Jens||SWE||16000 EUR||0 penalties 43.97 sec|
|5.||Abbervail van het Dingeshof||Lynch, Denis||IRL||10000 EUR||0 penalties 44.42 sec|
|6.||Corradina||Nagel, Carsten-Otto||GER||8000 EUR||0 penalties 45.27 sec|
|7.||Zinedine||Beerbaum, Ludger||GER||6000 EUR||0 penalties 48.42 sec|
|8.||Bella Donna||Michaels-Beerbaum, Meredith||GER||3000 EUR||0 penalties 52.41 sec|
|9.||Codex One||Ahlmann, Christian||GER||2000 EUR||4 penalties 43.54 sec|
|10.||Embassy II||Dreher, Hans-Dieter||GER||2000 EUR||4 penalties 43.83 sec|
|11.||Nayana||Leprevost, Penelope||FRA||2000 EUR||13 penalties 59.10 sec|