The First Day of Dressage in Baborówko

Baborówko, 30 September 2021 – The dressage trial for the CCI3*-S for the prize of Kuhn and the first part of the dressage for the CCI2*-S presented by the Wielkopolskie voivodeship Local Government have played out in Baborówko.

The best result in the CCI3*-S after dressage belongs to Felix Etzel (GER) with Promising Pete TSF. Antonia Baumgart (GER) with Lamango is second, and third place for now belongs to Caro Hoffrichter (GER) with Lucky V/H Trappersveld. The best Polish athlete is Julia Gillmaier, riding Red Dream Princes, currently in the sixth position.

The best round in the first part of the CCI2*-S dressage goes to Pia Munker (GER) riding Cascablanca. Caro Hoffrichter (GER) lies in second with Just Jacques, and Katharina Frahm (GER) is third with Liberty and Independence. The highest-ranked home athlete is Agata Piskadło with Broadway, who currently occupies the fifth position.

The organisers have prepared a livestream of the main classes, available at the show’s website (www.equestrian.baborowko.pl), the Baborówko Equestrian Facebook profile (https://www.facebook.com/baborowko.equestrian), and Świat Koni.

Bubbling with Excitement ahead of Barcelona Final

Andre Thieme and DSP Chakaria. (FEI/Christophe Taniere)

The Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ Final 2021 promises to bring an incredible year of team Jumping to a close this week at the Real Club de Polo in Barcelona, Spain.

Against all the odds in these Covid times, there has been spectacular team sport throughout the summer months, beginning with four thrilling legs of the Division 1 series in which Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, and The Netherlands all tasted success.

Then it was on to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games where Sweden pipped Team USA in a nail-biting showdown that went right down to the wire. And that was followed, just four short weeks ago, by the Longines FEI Jumping European Championships in Riesenbeck, German where Switzerland snatched team gold ahead of the hosts.

Barcelona presents the opportunity for some scores to be settled, and the horse/athlete combinations listed in the line-up of the 15 competing nations for the event which kicks off this Friday 1 October, and which runs through to Sunday 3 October, suggests it’s going to be yet another mighty battle at this much-anticipated season-closer.

Once the draw for order-of-go takes place on Thursday (30 September) the stage will be set for this annual clash of the giants of the sport.

Defending champions

Team Ireland arrive as defending champions, but it is two years since they stood on the top step of the podium and also claimed the last remaining qualifying sport for the Tokyo Games.

Darragh Kenny, ranked 12th in the world, is the only member of that 2019 winning side to line out again this year, and he will be joined by Denis Lynch and Michael G Duffy along with his near-namesake Michael Duffy and Eoin McMahon who were in the Irish side at Riesenbeck.

The full list of teams is Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, Great Britain, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, USA, and Uzbekistan.

All ten from Division 1 (BEL, FRA, GBR, GER, IRL, ITA, NED, NOR, SWE, SUI) have automatically qualified for the Final this year, but relegation to the EEF series in 2022 is still on the cards for the tenth-placed nation from this group next Sunday, so that piles on extra pressure.

Canada and USA represent North/Central America, and Uzbekistan have earned their slot as clear winners of the 2021 Eurasian League.

Extraordinary form

The Belgian team includes world number 8, Jerome Guery, who has been showing extraordinary form with Quel de Hus this year, and Gregory Wathelet who finished individually ninth in Tokyo with Nevados S.

Harry Charles, Emily Moffitt, Holly Smith, Jack Whitaker, and his uncle, the legendary John Whitaker, will fly the British flag during the week, while Team France are likely to come out with all guns blazing. They had gold in their sights in Tokyo, but it fell apart in the closing stages, so Matthieu Billot, Frederic Cottard, Marc Dilasser, Penelope Leprevost, and Olivier Robert will be on a mission to put that to rights.

Maikel van der Vleuten, who took individual Olympic bronze in August with Beauville Z, will headline the Dutch selection, while America’s Laura Kraut and Baloutinue, who were so impressive in Tokyo, will also be ones to watch.

The Swedes look really strong, with two of their three Olympic gold medallists – Malin Baryard-Johhnsson and Henrik von Eckermann, who also finished fourth individually – in action again alongside Angelica Augustsson Zanotelli, Rolf-Goran Bengtsson, and Angelie von Essen.

Biggest battle

Possibly the biggest battle will be waged between the Germans and Swiss.

The hosts of the FEI Jumping European Championships had plenty to celebrate when Andre Thieme clinched the individual title with the fabulous mare DSP Chakaria on the final day. But Steve Guerdat, Martin Fuchs, Bryan Balsiger, and Elian Baumann pinned Germany into silver medal spot in the team competition and there was some banter going on between the two sides during that week.

Switzerland fields the same four athletes this week along with Edwin Smits, but Germany sends out world number one Daniel Deusser together with Thieme, David Will, Christian Ahlmann, and Kendra Claricia Brinkop and they’ll be keen to turn the tables and lift the coveted Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ 2021 trophy.

All teams, consisting of four horse/athlete combinations, will line out in the first round of the Final on Friday night, and those who place ninth and above will go through to Saturday’s Challenge Cup, while the top eight teams will qualify for Sunday’s title-deciding final competition which will begin at 15.00 local time.

Website here

by Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager, Media Relations & Media Operations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Santiago Lambre Makes Easy Work of MLSJ Caledon

Santiago Lambre & Easy Girl. Photo © Mackenzie Clark for MLSJ.

Brazil’s Santiago Lambre earned the first CSI5* grand prix win of his career at Major League Show Jumping Caledon in the $217,000 BFL Canada Grand Prix on Sunday. The victory came on Easy Girl (10yo OS mare by Conthargos x Nintender owned by Mario Onate) in a pedal-to-the-medal jump-off.

Last to go, Lambre bested Shane Sweetnam (IRL) and Birdy du Thot’s leading time by nearly half a second. Canada’s own François Lamontagne finished third riding Chanel du Calvaire.

Lambre recently made a change to once again ride for his birth country. He stood at the highest point on the podium three times while the Brazilian national anthem played during his visit to Caledon Equestrian Center in Palgrave, ON this week.

Major League Show Jumping continues with a debut in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico for phase seven of MLSJ competition at Club Hipico Otomí October 28-31.

FULL RESULTS

majorleagueshowjumping.com

Household Cavalry Leads the Charge for London International Horse Show

The London International Horse Show, taking place at ExCeL London from 16-20 December 2021, will host performances from the Musical Ride of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment as part of the spectacular schedule of equestrian action across the five-day Show.

Organisers have confirmed the attendance of the much-loved Musical Ride of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, made up of 28 horses and 36 personnel, adding to the diverse range of equestrian activity already planned. As the only mounted ceremonial soldiers who also serve as fighting soldiers, the Musical Ride of The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment is unique globally as it demonstrates exceptional horsemanship and the very best of British tradition. The drills, which are based on movements mounted soldiers would have historically used in battle, will be carried out to music and performed in a routine that is strongly focused on precise timing and coordination.

The Musical Ride of the Household Cavalry will join the roster for each performance, which also includes scintillating action from The Shetland Pony Grand National and The Kennel Club Dog Agility.

In addition to the breath-taking display acts, spectators will be treated to world-class competitive action, including FEI World Cup competitions in three disciplines: Dressage, Driving, and Show Jumping. The traditional crowd favourites, The Puissance and The London International Horse Show Grand Prix, will also take their place at ExCeL London, featuring the world’s best show jumping horse and rider combinations, with the next generation of riders set to star in The Mini Stakes and The U25 British Championship.

Show Director Simon Brooks‐Ward said: “We are delighted to be welcoming The Musical Ride of the Household Cavalry to The London International Horse Show 2021. They are always a firm favourite amongst the crowd, and we can’t wait to see what they have in store this year.”

Captain William Long of The Life Guards said: “The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment is thrilled to be returning to the London International Horse Show. It will be very exciting to perform at the Show’s new venue, the ExCeL, this year.  It is always a privilege to take part in the show and truly does signal the start of the festive period.”

More information about The London International Horse Show, including how to buy tickets, can be found here.

The London International Horse Show
www.londonhorseshow.com
Niki McEwen / nmcewen@revolutionworld.com

Swail Kicks Off North American League with Convincing Victory

Conor Swail (IRL) and Vital Chance de la Roque. (FEI/Quinn Saunders)

It was a triumphant return for the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ North American League as Conor Swail (IRL) jumped to victory in front of a packed crowd at Thunderbird Show Park in Langley, BC (CAN) in the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Vancouver.

A compact but competitive field took on Peter Holmes’ (CAN) 1.60m track with the aim of getting an early jump on points toward qualifying for next April’s Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final in Leipzig (GER). A total of 14 athletes from the NAL will punch their tickets to the Final, including seven east coast U.S. athletes, three west coast U.S. athletes, and two athletes apiece from Canada and Mexico.

A clear round did not materialise until more than halfway through the starting order, when world number 13, Kent Farrington (USA), executed Holmes’ test with ease. Three riders would join the former world number 1 for the shortened track. Farrington blazed the trail in the jump-off with a blisteringly quick round, but a rail at the final fence left the door open for another to overtake him.

Swail then put his focus on keeping the fences up, and he accomplished that mission despite losing a stirrup during the round. He crossed the timers in 38.98 seconds, and the remaining riders could not catch him. Swail’s student Vanessa Mannix (CAN) and Catinka came closest, finishing second as the only other double-clear performers (40.59 seconds), while Farrington ultimately settled for third (4/36.12).

“If Kent had been clear, I imagine he would have been the winner. He would have been hard to chase,” Swail said. “I did a little bit, after Kent, [because] he was very aggressive and so fast, thought that if I just dialed it back a notch, it would hopefully still be enough to get a win.”

Swail has been partnered with the 12-year-old “Vinny” for less than a year, but the barefoot bay gelding has quickly proven his merit. His World Cup win marked the fourth international grand prix victory for the pair since June 20. The duo also won the $75,000 CSI4*-W tbird Cup at the venue three days prior.

“I’m extremely proud [of my horse],” Swail said. “He’s had a wonderful week: He’s been first, second, and first. He jumped so well today, he deserved it for being so good.

“We’re off to a great start [in the North American League],” he added. “This is the first [qualifier]. We’re going to Sacramento and Las Vegas; we’re going to be on a little tour doing [World Cup events]. We’ll see how we’re going after that.”

Swail claims the early lead in the North American League standings with 17 points. As an Irish rider based in North America, he competes as an “extra” athlete. Mannix sits second with 14 points, two points ahead of Farrington, who earned 12 points. The North American League heads next to Sacramento (CAN) on 9 October 2021.

Results

By Catie Staszak

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Taylor Land and Get Go Take Top Honors in $5,000 Horseware Ireland Welcome Stake

Taylor Land and Get Go ©TIEC/Reagan Ibach.

Mill Spring, NC – September 26, 2021 – Taylor Land (Atlanta, GA) and Get Go added more wins at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) to their list of successes at the venue by landing first place in the $25,000 Tryon Resort Grand Prix and the $5,000 Horseware Ireland Welcome Stake during Tryon Fall 1. Land and Get Go, owned by Pinetree Farms Inc, took the grand prix win with a jump-off time of 35.221 while Abigail McArdle (Wellington, FL) and Sweetwater Jumpers LLC’s Golden Quality, the 2011 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Quality Time TN x Quasimodo Z), followed closely behind in second with a score of 35.99. McArdle also placed third with Samuel Parot Jr.’s I&H Boogy Woogy, the 2006 Hungarian gelding (Faldo x I&H Vanilla Fudge), earning a time of 36.872 seconds, as well as fourth on Victorio 5, owned by Victorio Equine Group LLC, with 37.542 seconds.

Land spoke highly of the course design by Nick Granat (Wellington, FL) that challenged 13 pairs, with only four returning for the jump-off.

“I thought the first course was really fun! Everything came up pretty quick out of the turn, which is always challenging. The triple was early in the course, which can be difficult, but I thought my horses handled it very well today. I really enjoy Nick Granat’s courses. He provides a lot of options and his courses aren’t trappy. I did two horses today and I really enjoyed it with both of them.”

With McArdle competing on three horses, Land was able to preview how the jump-off course rode for McArdle before taking her turn in the ring.

“I was very lucky that Abigail was in the jump-off with three horses. I was the only other competitor, and she went before me on two horses, so I got to see her go and how the track rode. I didn’t really change my plan based on her rounds, but I knew where I needed to be fast and that’s always such an advantage. She had a rail with the first horse, but she had a really nice round with the second horse, so I just looked for a few places to shave time. I think I was a little faster in two of the rollbacks, and that was about it. I was just trying to nick away at her time because she had a really good jump-off.”

For more info and results, visit www.Tryon.com.

Ellie Aronson and It’s Easy Time Land the ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Region 3 Championship

Ellie Aronson and It’s Easy Time ©Anne Gittins Photography.

Wellington, FL – Sept. 26, 2021 – It was a busy weekend of equitation competition during the ESP Florida State Fall, which hosted the Region 3 ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Championship as the highlight event at Equestrian Village. The class saw young riders from across the southeast region compete for the chance to compete at the finals later this year. Thanks to consistent performances over the fences and on the flat, plus a test, Ellie Aronson of Atlanta, GA and Eva Fisherman’s It’s Easy Time emerged as the victors.

“My horse was perfect! Even though this is just our second show together, I felt like everything just came together really well,” Aronson shared. She continued to elaborate on the rounds, saying, “In the first round, I just tried to stay on a nice canter. He holds himself in a really nice frame naturally, so in the flat phase I was able to just focus on myself and hold my position. Then in the test I just wanted to go out there and have fun with it.”

Forty-three riders contested the first round course, set by Andy Christiansen (ECU), in the covered ring at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. Following the first round of competition, 32 riders were invited back for the flat phase, which was broken up into three groups, and ultimately just four riders were asked to return for the final test. After three technical rounds of competition, Aronson and It’s Easy Time were crowned the champions. Earning second place was Hailey Royce of Wellington, FL and Elios, owned by Michael Dietrich. Third-place honors were awarded to Schuyler Dayner of Odessa, FL and her own Gambino.

For more information and results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

All Glory for Great Britain’s Golden Girls at Avenches

L to R – Sarah Bullimore (bronze), Nicola Wilson (gold), and Piggy March (silver). (FEI/Richard Juilliart)

British riders have long had a phenomenal record in the sport of Eventing, and they proved untouchable once again when not only clinching the team title but taking all the individual medals at the FEI Eventing European Championships 2021 in Avenches, Switzerland.

In the lead from day one they held on tight, and when this result is added to double-gold at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 and the team title along with individual silver at this summer’s Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, they clearly reign supreme in every sense.

It was a tough day for the defending champions from Germany as the dream of a seventh victory for the team and a third consecutive individual gold medal for Ingrid Klimke and SAP Hale Bob OLD didn’t come true, as they had to settle for silver. But in true sporting fashion the German team “elder,” Andreas Dibowski, said, “We won the silver, but we didn’t lose the gold. The Brits did an amazing job, and we just couldn’t beat them!”

Team Sweden stood on the third step of the podium.

First

Ros Canter and Allstar B were first of the British into the ring as the final showjumping phase got underway. Theirs was not a counting score for the team standings that left her side still out in front last night, but the pair who claimed double-gold at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 were back to their classy selves when producing a quality clear, and that proved a good omen for the rest of their team.

A total of 52 horse-and-athlete combinations made it through to this final test, with 13 nations still in the mix, and by the time it came down to the last ten riders the tension was palpable. As the action began, the Germans were just under 10 penalty points behind the British at the head of affairs, with France lying in bronze medal position another 18 points further adrift but with only three team members left after the elimination of Gwendolen Fer. So when Stanislas de Zuchowicz and Covadys de Triaval hit the first element of the double at fence nine and Jean Lou Bigot’s Utrillo du Halage left three fences on the floor, then French chances were slipping away.

Andreas Dibowski and FRH Corrida produced an opening clear for Germany before Anna Siemer and FRH Butts Avondale also fell victim to the first element of the triple combination. But Michael Jung steered fischerWild Wave home with nothing to add, and then only Klimke and SAP Hale Bob OLD were left to go.

However, it was only an individual medal Klimke was chasing by the time she took her turn, because as Dibowski said later, the British were just too good for the rest. Team member Kitty King’s Vendredi Biats hit the second fence, but Piggy March’s Brookfield Inocent was foot-perfect. And when Nicola Wilson’s JL Dublin went clear, she not only finalised the British tally at 73.1 for the winning team score, but she also had individual gold in her grasp while, lying fourth as the action began, March had the silver and British individual Sarah Bullimore had the bronze. It was a staggering result.

Pressure

Fifth-last to go, Bullimore piled the pressure on the remaining four with a fabulous clear from Corouet. And when Frenchman Maxime Livio, lying in bronze medal spot, faulted in the middle of the combination and then Klimke, holding silver, hit the vertical three from home, it would be an all-British individual podium for the seventh time in the history of these Championships. The last British threesome to do the same were Ian Stark (Glenburnie), Richard Walker (Jacana), and Karen Straker (Get Smart) at Punchestown (IRL) in 1991.

Meanwhile, Sweden also had plenty to celebrate when clears from both Malin Jesefsson (Golden Midnight) and Malin Petersen (Charly Brown) and a single error from Sara Algotsson Ostholt (Chicuelo) saw the team, that also included Christoffer Forsberg (Hippo’s Sapporo), rise from overnight sixth place to take bronze.

“I’m back in the team for first time in ten years and it’s great to be with the girls!” Forsberg said. “I’ve been really happy with the team spirit, and I want to thank the organisers very much for putting on this show.” And that was echoed by everyone else at the end of this extraordinary event that was put together so successfully in a few short months.

Trainer

At the post-competition press conference, Germany’s Ingrid Klimke said with a laugh, “I have one thing to say to the Brits – they stole our trainer!” referring to Britain’s Eventing High Performance coach Chris Bartle, who helped her country to many successes in previous years. “But I’m very happy for them; they did a wonderful job!” she added.

Her compatriot, the effusive Anna Meier, was thrilled to earn her first medal at Senior Championship level. “I feel like I’m always in a team with my horse, but to be in a team with these guys is wonderful; they’ve won millions of medals between them but this is my first!” she said, looking around at Dibowski, Klimke, and Jung.

Bullimore described her 10-year-old gelding Corouet as “just a freak of nature! He’s phenomenal in all phases; he could do pure show jumping and pure dressage; he’s unique,” she said. “He has a huge attitude in a small package, he knows how cool he is, and he’s been fantastic all week,” she added. Her individual bronze was an especially precious result because she bred the horse and also competed his dam at the FEI European Championships in Blair Castle (GBR) in 2015.

March, team gold medallist at the FEI World Equestrian Games in 2018 and team silver medallist at the last FEI European Eventing Championships two years ago, described her individual silver medal winning ride Brookfield Inocent as “definitely one of the best I’ve ever ridden – in all three phases he couldn’t have done any more!” And she added, “Personally, I think that if we’re ahead of Ingrid Klimke and Micky Jung then that’s a medal in itself, wherever we’d finish! This has just been a fabulous week!”

Reflected

Meanwhile, newly crowned individual European champion Wilson reflected on the enormity of it all with her trademark modesty. “This has been very very special, being with this fantastic group of girls who all get along really well. It’s been fun all the way and the horses have been phenomenal.

“It’s a first championship for Dublin; he missed a bit of time when I injured my neck (two years ago) and then Covid came long, but now I’m so proud for my owners. I was delighted with his dressage; it just felt very solid and good and then he stormed around the cross-country and produced a beautiful round in the show jumping. How lovely it is to have had him since he was a young horse and to build that lovely partnership and trust between us,” she said with quiet pride, adding, “Thank you to Switzerland for putting on these Championships!”

Gratitude

Everyone expressed their gratitude to the Organising Committee headed up by Jean-Pierre Kratzer, President of the Institut Equestre National d’Avenches, where this week’s event has taken place. A total of 21,000 spectators came through the gates of the fabulous venue, including over 10,000 on cross-country day.

“I built this place 20 years ago for racing, and to expand our business we then built a training centre for 150 horses. Last year during Covid, we were asked to help riders in preparation for Tokyo and we took the opportunity to plan for the future and help develop Eventing here,” he explained.

“When we got the opportunity to organise these Championships I talked with Mike Etherington-Smith in July about how to make it the best, and he asked if he could work with Martin Plewa. It was one opportunity for a lot of people and we took it and put it together in a few weeks with good team spirit. So I’m delighted to see all the teams happy and hear them say they want to come back; that’s the best thank you we could get!”

Results here.

by Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager, Media Relations & Media Operations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Mixed Cross-Country Fortunes, but British Hold Fast Going into Final Day

Nicola Wilson and JL Dublin. (FEI/Richard Juillart)

When asked what she thought of the cross-country course after completing her Dressage test with JL Dublin at the FEI Eventing European Championships 2021 in Avenches, Switzerland on Thursday, Great Britain’s Nicola Wilson described it as “positively terrifying!” But on a day of mixed fortunes for the British side who still managed to maintain the lead they established on the opening day, the pair rose from third to the very top of the Individual rankings after a spectacular run that further stretched the gap between her team and the defending champions from Germany.

And it was a very exciting afternoon for France. An unfortunate tip-up for Gwendolen Fer and Romantic Love in the water at fence 23 piled plenty of pressure on her compatriots who, however, rose gallantly to the challenge to hold on to bronze medal spot going into the final Jumping phase.

The British tally of 69.1 leaves them just over nine penalty points ahead of Germany, while on 96.8 the French are a good distance behind. Team Switzerland shot up from ninth to fourth while the Irish climbed from eleventh to fifth, and the stage is set for a sizzling conclusion to the 35th edition of these Championships, which are taking place against the odds during these troubling Covid times.

It’s only six short weeks since course designer, Great Britain’s Mike Etherington-Smith, started work on the track that embraces the beautiful racing venue at Avenches, but the horses, riders, and the enthusiastic crowd that turned up to see Europe’s best battle it out were treated to a great day of sport.

And the British maintained their supremacy despite a disappointing performance from the reigning World Championship partnership of Ros Canter and Allstar B. Sitting in Individual silver medal spot as the day began, the pair plummeted to 55th with two run-outs late in the course.

Set things up

Piggy March and Brookfield Inocent produced one of just seven fault-free rounds to set things up for the British side.

“Everything is easy when you have a horse like him. The time was tight enough but he’s a real cruiser. What a horse and how lucky am I to have him!” she said.

And when Wilson followed suit, they were already looking very secure. Despite her earlier reservations, Wilson admitted that “the course rode beautifully, and my horse was very honest.” So when Kitty King and Vendredi Biats added just 0.8 time penalties to her dressage mark, then Canter’s additional 56 penalties could be dropped as they were comfortably in control.

German pathfinder Anna Siemer also had a great day, adding just 1.6 to her scoreline with FRH Butts Avondale. She was over the moon after her ride. “It was so much fun!” she said. “For her the dressage was done and now this is what we are here for! She’s like a pony; I know her for 10 years now, and from the moment she jumped her first cross-country fence, she was a cross-country machine!” said the rider who walked the track seven times in order to ensure she met with no surprises.

Andreas Dibowski was next out for the German side, adding 15.2 penalties to his scoreline with FRH Corrida. But Michael Jung pulled it back with a classic clear with the nine-year-old fischerWild Wave, demonstrating the skill that has earned the German superstar the title “The Terminator.”

“He’s a young horse but amazing, with a lot of talent in all three disciplines. Today he showed how light and easy he can gallop, and he has super endurance, he’s fast, and has a lot of scope for the bigger, tougher courses. Right now, all he needs is just more experience – to learn to be clever and to think. I’m really happy with him,” Jung said.

Weight of expectation

Now only the individual leader, Ingrid Klimke, was left to go for the German side, with a huge weight of expectation on her shoulders. If she can take the individual title she will be the first athlete in the long history of the FEI Eventing European Championships to do so with the same horse on three consecutive occasions. But 1.2 time penalties saw her lose her grip on pole position and she goes into the final phase just 0.5 penalties behind Wilson at the head of affairs.

“He was bold and brave, like he always is,” Klimke said of her beloved Bobby. “I had lots of time at the 7-minute mark, and then in the end there were two seconds (added) because I just couldn’t go any faster, especially in the turns. I had to take my time so I didn’t have a run-out. I had to be precise to the end and I felt it was the fastest I would like to go through the corners and the deeper ground. I thought I would make it, but unfortunately we didn’t – but he did a lovely job really and he finished full of himself!” she said.

Meanwhile, Jean Lou Bigot got the French off to a great start when delivering a fault-free run with Utrillo du Halage, but Gwendolen Fer’s fall left them looking very vulnerable. However, when Stanislas de Zuchowicz and the lovely grey Covadys de Triaval added only 14 time penalties to their score, the French situation began to stabilise. And he was thrilled with his result, produced under pressure.

“It was his first time at 4-Star level and my Chef d’Equipe told me I had to be clear, but my horse was fantastic! My job was to be careful about his balance because his jump is always fantastic, and his canter is always very good. We had a slip on the turn after fence 15 and that was a tricky moment, but I had the face of my coach in my head, and I knew we had to stay on our feet!” said the man from Fontainebleau who first rode for the French team in 2009.

Great round

And then Maxime Livio secured that bronze medal position definitively with a great round from Api du Libaire.

“The trainer told me to be quick enough to secure the bronze medal place but not to take any stupid risk like I might if I was only an individual rider, but the plan was not to take too big risk with that horse because he’s not really experienced. So I was quite comfortable with that. He (the horse) allowed me to take the straight route at 6/7, because he’s very straight. So I took that risk and he answered very well, but I just felt when I jumped the water when I came back on the race-track that his jumping was not as energetic at the beginning. So I decided okay, now we try to hold it together. He was a bit tired in the body but not in the mind. He was listening to me, looking at the fences, fully focused, and I’m very pleased because he fought with me to the very end for the French team. And also, his score is really good, so I am very happy!” Livio said.

It’s all so very close, and the result could go any which way on the exciting final day.

Results here.

by Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager, Media Relations & Media Operations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

New Retirees Arrive at Old Friends

Bordonaro (left) and Next Shares (Photo Mary Greene)

Graded Stakes Winners Next Shares and Bordonaro

GEORGETOWN, KY – SEPTEMBER 23, 2021 – Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, KY, has welcomed new retirees.

Next Shares, winner of the 2018 Old Friends Stakes at Kentucky Downs, and multiple graded stakes winner Bordonaro.

A Richard Baltas trainee and owned in partnership, Next Shares (Archarcharch – Two Dot Slew, Evansville Slew) retires after seven seasons with a record of seven wins from 49 starts and earnings of $1.891,971.

A multiple graded stakes winner, Next Shares also captured the 2018 GR1 Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland, the GR2 San Gabriel Stakes at Santa Anita, and the GR2 Seabiscuit at Del Mar in 2019.

Bordonaro (Memo – Miss Excitment, Rajab), comes to Old Friends through the United Pegasus Foundation in Tehachapi, CA. A William Spawr trainee, the now 20-year-old gelding won the 2006 GR1 Ancient Breeders’ Cup Stakes at Oak Tree and is a two-time winner of the GR3 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (2006 and 2007) at Oaklawn Park. He retired with 10 wins from 20 starts and earnings of $938,128.

“We’re so thrilled to have both of these wonderful athletes,” said Old Friends founder and president Michael Blowen. “Richard Baltus, who entered Next Shares in the Old Friends Stakes because it guaranteed his retirement, and Bill Spawr, who trusted us with Amazombie, are two very special old friends.”

Old Friends Welcomes Rocketry

SEPT. 24, 2021 – Old Friends has welcomed multiple graded stakes winner Rocketry.

The son of Hard Spun, now 7, retired from racing in August of this year following a fourth-place effort in the Birdstone Stakes at Saratoga. At that time, he was sent to owner Centennial Farms’ Middleburg, VA facility to unwind.

He retired after five seasons on the track with six wins from 29 starts and lifetime earnings of $811,577.

A fan favorite thanks to his thrilling late-running style, Rocketry truly came into his own as a 4-year-old under conditioner Jimmy Jerkens. He captured the 2018 Temperence Hill Invitational Stakes at Belmont Park by crushing a 98-year-old track record for 1 5/8 miles held by Man o’ War, and, later that year, he earned his first graded stakes victory in the GR2 Marathon Stakes at Churchill Downs, again setting a new track record for the 1 ¾ miles.

In his 6-year-old campaign Rocketry added a third track record to his resume, this time going 1 5/8 miles in 2:42.57 at Keeneland, and picked up another graded victory in the GR2 Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance Stakes.

“Just like the movie character, Rocketry could not have lived up to his nickname of ‘Rocky’ any better,” said Don Little, Jr., President of Centennial Farms. “He consistently campaigned in stakes carrying the Centennial flag with honor every time he set foot on the track. He was sound throughout his career while breaking three track records over a distance of ground. Being involved with a horse like this was truly a joy, thrill, and one that will be cherished by all the partners involved,” Little continued. “While he will be missed on the oval, we look forward to him showing off to visitors at Old Friends.”

“Who doesn’t love Rocketry?” said Old Friends founder and President Michael Blowen. “We’re very fortunate that Centennial Farms trusts us to care for their great marathoner. Thanks to Don Little, Jr. and Jimmy Jerkins for allowing us to showcase him to his many fans.”

For more information, please call (502) 863-1775 or visit www.oldfriendsequine.org.

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