Jérôme Guéry and Zojasper (BEL).
To celebrate the comeback of the international Jumping of Dinard at the highest level of competition, the magnificent site of the Val Porée, beautifully decorated in pink, was holding the first class of the CSI5*, where the best riders in the world will compete during the next four days.
The challenge of the day, for the 40 riders on the start list in this Alvalle class, was clear: present the showground to the horses, and prepare for the Tropicana Derby, on Saturday, and for the Grand Prix of the City of Dinard, culminating point of the competition, on Sunday afternoon.
On the menu for this opening class, a 12 fences course, at a height of 1m45, in two phases, only the second one being against the clock. Out of the twelve riders who signed a clear round, the Belgian rider Jérôme Guéry was the fastest (40″77), associated to his faithful Zojasper. With a large smile on his face, the rider was obviously very happy about his horse. “He seemed very comfortable on this huge track that can sometimes be impressive. I had planned to be quite fast, but not to push him to his limits. He was very confident and I thought I could ask a little more on the second phase. I did not take the latest risk, but I cut my turns short. Of course, not so many riders decided to play the time, the real sport will only start tomorrow, but begin a show with a win is always encouraging.”
The Olympic champion, Eric Lamaze (CAN), who was leading the class most of the time, finally placed second with Fine Lady 5, in a time of 43″30. The 3rd place goes to the Italian rider Luca Maria Moneta and Herold N (44″40). The French riders, who had chosen not push their horses today, still stand in the top Ten, with Alexis Borrin, 5th with Ruby de la Fosse, who confirms his form at this level, and Emeric George, 7th with Rocker d’Ysieux. “It is a very good start for my horse. He needed this class to warm up and get into the competition. He did it with great style; I had a very good feeling. I hope he will keep on jumping that way; I trust him on this.”
Tomorrow, at 11.30am, the riders will be in the main arena for the “Ille et Vilaine” County class, followed by the Suez Environment class at 2.30pm.