Reigning FEI European champion, Roger Yves Bost from France, steered Qoud‘Coeur de la Loge to victory on home turf at the third leg of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2014/2015 Western European League series in Lyon, France today. (FEI/Pierre Costabadie)
Lyon (FRA), 2 November 2014 – There was a frenzy of French excitement at the third leg of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2014/2015 Western European League in Lyon today when the reigning FEI European individual champion, Roger Yves Bost, emerged victorious on home ground.
In a competition that sizzled with excitement from beginning to end, it came down to a 14-horse jump-off against the clock in which the 49-year-old rider and his 10-year-old horse Qoud’Coeur de la Loge snatched victory from the grasp of Dutch veteran Wout-Jan van der Schans and Capetown.
Today’s success was all the more special for Bost as his winning ride is by his great former campaigner, the stallion Ideal de la Loge. And in a field sparkling with quality combinations, it was Germany’s Hans-Dieter Dreher and Embassy ll who slotted into third ahead of The Netherlands’ Gerco Schroder and Cognac Champblanc in fourth place.
Significant jumping test
A total of 18 countries were represented by the 40 starters, and course-designer Frank Rothenberger’s first-round track certainly presented a significant jumping test. Maximum-height verticals and oxers were spread all around the arena, but, arguably, the final decorative white planks produced some of the biggest surprises of the day when the top three riders in the current Longines world rankings all went out of contention here.
The statistics spoke for themselves, with seven riders opting to retire in round one, including former Olympic and FEI World Cup™ champion Rodrigo Pessoa from Brazil (Status), Australian star Edwina Tops-Alexander (Old Chap Tame) and Spain’s Sergio Alvarez-Moya (Action-Breaker). But no-one would have expected that current World no. 1 Scott Brash from Great Britain with his London 2012 Olympic team gold-medal-winning ride Hello Sanctos, World no. 2 Ludger Beerbaum and his European team silver-medal-winning ride Chiara, and world no 3, fellow-German and three-time FEI World Cup™ Jumping champion Marcus Ehning partnering the spectacular Cornado NRW, would all sail around the track only to fall foul of the final obstacle.
Bost explained afterwards, “The problem was that horses had to give so much at the previous oxer, so it was up to the rider to keep their focus and momentum coming down to the last fence. I had to cut my distance short and go on a long stride, and that worked for me,” he said.
Jump-off pathfinder, Wout-Jan van der Schans, set them a blistering target when clear in 37.24 seconds with Capetown. Key to success in this round was the ability to gallop long distances and arrive in balance at the next obstacle, and making a really good job of the roll-back from the oxer that was now second on the course to, the following oxer at fence seven. Another long run down the long side of the arena took them to the water-tray oxer at eight and then riders had to take further risk on the roll-back to the remaining two elements of the triple combination. From there it was a case of making a good distance to the penultimate Longines vertical and racing down to the final oxer on the other side of the arena.
And, fourth to go, Germany’s Hans-Dieter and Embassy ll had a great crack at it with the extravagant 13-year-old horse giving the fences plenty of air but still returning a good time of 38.41 seconds to slot temporarily into second. Bost’s round changed everything, however.
The Frenchman started out to a roar of “allez Bosty” from the sidelines, and “allez” he most certainly did, with his French-bred horse answering his every question along the way. For anyone who watched this rider at his best with Ideal de la Loge there was a sense of deja vu, and he was very aware of that himself. “He’s very similar to Ideal, not just physically but in his attitude as well,” Bost said afterwards. “He loves to go fast, just like his father, but he is easier in the mouth,” the rider pointed out after posting the new target of 36.82.
And, try as they might, the rest couldn’t better that.
There were four French in the final barrage, and Bost’s fellow-countryman, Simon Delestre, returned the quickest time of 35.89 with Qlassic Bois Margot but left the penultimate oxer on the floor. Third-last into the arena, America’s Lauren Hough and Ohlala also bettered the time when breaking the beam in 36.54 but again left one on the ground while the man who claimed team and individual silver at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2014 in Normandy, Patrice Delaveau, set the crowd alight again when second-last into the arena with Carinjo HDC. But the pair arrived on a bad stride to the first element of the double three fences from home, and it fell apart for them there. And when The Netherlands’ Gerco Schroder opted for a calm and careful clear with the clean-jumping 11-year-old grey, Cognac Champblanc, then he easily slotted into fourth place.
Course designer, Frank Rothenberger, admitted that he was surprised at how well the horses and riders coped with his very tough track.
“I was expecting to get eight or nine into the jump-off so in the end I was surprised when we had 14, but this is a big arena with excellent footing, and the horses were well prepared having already jumped in other big classes over the last few days,” he said.
Bost talked about Qoud’Coeur de la Loge who, just last weekend, won the 3-Star Grand Prix at St Lo in France. “He is a horse with huge potential and we are carefully planning his career. I want to save him a bit as well, choosing the shows he goes to, but I’m super-confident about his future and very happy with him,” he said.
Wout-Jan van der Schans was more than pleased with his runner-up result. “I was first to go in the jump-off so I had to be super-fast and, to be honest, I feel like I won today! I couldn’t do the WEG (Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2014 in Normandy) because the horse was a bit green and not ready and I was a bit frustrated about that. But we went to the (Furusiyya FEI) Nations Cup Final in Barcelona and we won the Grand Prix there on the Sunday, and today he gave me everything he had, so I think he is great!” he added.
Bost made another little piece of equestrian history today when he was the first French rider ever to win the FEI World Cup™ Jumping qualifier in Lyon. “It’s a very special thing to happen on the 20th anniversary of our show,” said Show Director Sylvie Robert this evening.
For further information on the third leg of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2014/2015 Western European League series at Lyon in France, visit website www.equitalyon.com or contact Press Officer Veronique Gauthier, Email email@example.com, Tel +33 967 073 729.
The next leg will take place in Verona, Italy on Sunday 9 November. For details of the Italian fixture, go to website www.jumpingverona.it, or contact Press Officer Caterina Vagnozzi, Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel +39 335 6107070.
Facts and Figures:
Lyon, France was the venue for the third leg of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2014/2015 Western European series today.
40 horse-and-rider combinations from 18 countries lined out.
Course designer was Germany’s Frank Rothenberger.
14 horse-and-rider combinations from 9 nations qualified for the second-round jump-off against the clock.
The country with the biggest number of riders in the jump-off was France, with four in total.
Only four horse-and-rider combinations jumped double-clear rounds.
Today’s winner was reigning European champion Roger Yves Bost from France riding Qoud’Coeur de la Loge, a 10-year-old daughter of the stallion Ideal de la Loge which also brought this rider many great successes during their career together.
The Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2015 Final will take place in Las Vegas, USA from 15-19 April 2015.
It will be the sixth time for the FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final to visit the American city.
Hans-Dieter Dreher GER, talking about his horse Embassy ll – “I have not been competing this horse for a while so I’m very happy to finish third!”
Frank Rothenberger GER, course designer – “I have to admit I was impressed with how well the horses handled the course today, and by how fast they were against the clock.”
Full standings here.
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Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping press kit: download all the details from www.feipresskits.org (contains series calendar, competition schedule, online media tools and history).
Rider biographies: view online and download from http://www.fei.org/bios.
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