CAN MARCUS OR MEREDITH MAKE IT A RECORD FOURTH TITLE? by Louise Parkes
Lausanne (SUI), 15 April 2011 – With less than two weeks to go to the Rolex FEI World Cup 2010/2011 Jumping Final in Leipzig (GER), excitement is at fever pitch and speculation is rife about whether defending champion Marcus Ehning or his German compatriot Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum, can secure a historic fourth victory.
Just four riders have been three-time winners throughout the 32 seasons of this most prestigious indoor tournament, which brings together the leading competitors from 14 leagues staged all around the globe.
Two of those won’t make it to this year’s 33rd annual grand finale as Austria’s Hugo Simon, the first man to hold the coveted trophy aloft back in 1979 and winner again in 1996 and 1997, didn’t make the cut and Brazil’s Rodrigo Pessoa, who proved unbeatable between 1998 and 2000, has already said he won’t be making the trip to Leipzig.
That leaves only Ehning and Michaels-Beerbaum, members of Germany’s gold medal winning team at last year’s Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games and multiple champions in their own right, in contention for a record-breaking fourth success.
Burbank, CA – In sunny California, the competition for a coveted spot on the U.S. and Canadian Pan American Games teams heated up during the Festival of the Horse CDI-W/Y/J, held March 31 – April 3, 2011, at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center in Burbank. Despite a large and talented group of international competitors, there was no stopping Steffen Peters with what the judges deemed his new “super horse”, Weltino’s Magic.
Peters and Jen Hlavacek’s nine-year-old Westfalen gelding (Weltino x Diva by Diamond Boy) swept the small tour with impressive scores of 75.395% in the Prix St. Georges and 77.237% for the Intermediaire I, and debuted their new freestyle to a score of 79.417%. “The first word that comes to mind is ‘fun’,” says Peters in describing the weekend’s rides. “He’s really a pleasure to ride, so supple and forward now, it’s like that feeling that I get from Ravel.”
On Peters’ heels throughout the competition were Guenter Seidel and Sundayboy (Dutch Warmblood gelding by Kennedy, owned by Richard and Jane Brown), who earned second-place finishes in both the Prix St. Georges and Intermediaire I; as well as Freestyle runner-up Jan Ebeling and Anne Romney’s Sandrina (Oldenburg mare by Sandro Hit x Stutbuch by Ganymed). “There are really nice horses here on the West Coast,” noted judge Cara Whitham (5* CAN). “While I haven’t seen every single horse out there, at this point and from what we saw this weekend it looks like it may be a U.S. team of gentlemen riders going to Guadalajara for the Pan Ams. It’s very strong out here. But it is still a long while until October. We’ll see!”
Lexington, KY – The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) will be represented by three American dressage riders at the 2011 Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage Final to be held in Leipzig, Germany, April 27 – May 1.
The United States will be represented by two combinations from the North American League and one from the Western European League. The following horse/rider combinations qualified during World Cup Qualifying Events held throughout the 2010-2011 season:
North American League* Jan Ebeling/52/ Moorpark, CA/Rafalca/14/Oldenburg/Mare/Ann Romney
Shawna Harding/41/Aiken, SC/Come On III/12/Danish Warmblood/Gelding/Shawna Harding
*Tina Konyot (Palm City, FL) topped the standings in the North American League for 2010-2011 season but declined the opportunity to compete in the 2011 Final.
Western European League Catherine Haddad/47/Vechta, Germany/Winyamaro/11/Hanoverian/Gelding/Catharine Haddad
Lausanne (SUI), 6 April 2011 – The FEI World Cup Eventing 2011 series kicks off at Kihikihi in New Zealand tomorrow (7-10 April).
Australia’s Shane Rose, silver medallist at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, and Chris Burton, member of the Australia Eventing team at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010, have confirmed they will be competing along with the cream of New Zealand-based Eventing riders.
LYNCH SNATCHES LAST-CHANCE WIN AT ‘S-HERTOGENBOSCH by Louise Parkes
27 March 2011 – Ireland’s Denis Lynch snatched a last-minute place at next month’s Rolex FEI World Cup Jumping final in Leipzig, Germany with a superb victory in the final qualifier of the Western European League series at ‘s-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands today. Riding the gigantic 11 year old gelding Abbervail van het Dingeshof which belongs to his Swiss patron Thomas Straumann, the Irishman produced a stunning round when eighth to go in the thrilling 17-horse jump-off, and could not be caught despite the best efforts of many of the super-stars who followed him.
“It’s my very first World Cup win – I’ve been trying to do this for the last 15 years and I’ve been placed plenty of times but I’ve never come out on top so it feels really good!” Lynch said. “I wanted to make it to the final and this was my last chance – I’m really happy it worked out and I’m delighted with my horse,” he added. A total of six Dutch riders went into the jump-off but Jeroen Dubbeldam (BMC Van Grunsven Simon), Eric van der Vleuten (VDL Groep Utascha SFN) and Piet Raijmakers Jr. (Van Schijndel’s Rascin) had to settle for second, third and fourth places respectively while Frenchman, Simon Delestre (Couletto), lined up in fifth.
This was a day of intense pressure, and Dutch course designer Louis Konickx was feeling it as much as the riders. “The second part of the start-list was a course-designers nightmare!” he said afterwards. “I didn’t want to be over the top with my track so I felt I needed to compromise, but the jump-off worked out very well so I’m satisfied,” he added. The ease with which so many managed to keep a clean sheet first time out was indeed surprising but possibly indicative of the familiarity and comfort so many horse-and-rider combinations have developed after the winter-long indoor season, along with the quality of the 40-strong field.
CORNELISSEN AND PARZIVAL SCOOP THEIR FIFTH VICTORY AT ‘S-HERTOGENBOSCH by Louise Parkes
The Netherlands’ Adelinde Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival secured their fifth victory of the season when coming out on top at the last qualifying leg of the 2010/2011 Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage Western European League at ‘s-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands this afternoon. They now look sure-fire favourites to scoop the title at the final which takes place in Leipzig, Germany from 27 April to 1 May, and the Dutch rider said today, “Yes, we’re in pretty good shape!”
Germany’s Isabell Werth and Warum Nicht produced a wonderful test, but still had to settle for runner-up spot ahead of Dutchman Hans Peter Minderhoud whose mare, Exquis Nadine, was really on her toes. And fourth place went to Germany’s Helen Langehanenberg and Responsible whose star has been steadily rising throughout the current season.
SET THE STANDARD Catherine Haddad led the way at the halfway stage having set the standard with a score of 74.10 from the flashy chestnut Winymaro who seems to thrive in front of an audience. And the American rider was smiling broadly as she left the arena to the strains of the crowd singing “Happy Birthday” in celebration of her 47th year. Her score was immediately overtaken as the action re-started however, although Great Britain’s Richard Davison had to work hard for his mark of 77.025. His 12 year old gelding, Artemis, decided some of the greenery surrounding the arena was extremely suspicious and never fully settled throughout his test.
Lausanne (SUI), 24 March 2011 – The FEI Bureau has awarded the 2012 Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage Final to ‘s-Hertogenbosch (NED). This major event, which will be held in conjunction with the Rolex FEI World Cup Jumping Final, will take place from 18 to 22 April 2012.
This weekend, ‘s-Hertogenbosch, located in the southern Netherlands, will play host to the last qualifiers of the Rolex FEI World Cup Jumping and the Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage for the 2010/2011 season.
Both competitions will be broadcast LIVE on the official FEI online video platform FEI TV on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 March.
Wellington, FL – March 12, 2010 – Saturday Night Lights at the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival brought a crowd of over 4,200 spectators out to the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center this weekend to watch Brazil’s Rodrigo Pessoa and Let’s Fly jump to victory in the $231,000 FEI World Cup Grand Prix CSI 4*-W Presented by Bainbridge Companies. Pessoa earned the winning cut of prize money after an exciting jump-off of many of the top horses and riders in the world.
The FTI Winter Equestrian Festival’s ninth week of competition, sponsored by Bainbridge Companies, will conclude with the Suncast 1.50m Championship Jumper Series Classic on Sunday at 1 p.m. The 2011 WEF will continue through April 3 and award more than $6 million in prize money.
Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela designed tonight’s course for a field of 42 starters. Eight jumped clear in the first round to advance to the jump-off. Six of those eight were the top women riding for the United States followed up by two of the world’s best men from Great Britain and Brazil. The men were able to best the ladies tonight, taking the top two places with the only clear rounds over the short course.
The FEI World Cup Eventing 2011 series kicks off at Kihikihi in New Zealand on 7-10 April, when John Nicholson’s imaginative cross-country course will test the mettle of some of the world’s most talented horse and rider combinations.
This year’s series – which takes place at eight venues across Australasia, Europe and the UK – will once again run in similar fashion to the Meydan FEI Nations Cup in Jumping, with the rider topping the points table at the end of the season claiming the prestigious title of FEI World Cup Eventing champion 2011.
The points based system has proved extremely popular with riders as it opens up the series to those not able to travel long distances with their horses. Riders will gain points based on their performance and final placings at each venue. They will have to obtain a minimum of three FEI World Cup Eventing results during the series to be eligible for the title.
A STAR IS BORN ON A SPECIAL DAY IN GOTHENBURG – AND HER NAME IS ANGELICA by Louise Parkes
Gothenburg (SWE), 27 February 2011 – Swedish hearts were bursting with pride as a bright young super-star was born in the Scandinavium Arena at Gothenburg, Sweden this afternoon where local girl Angelica Augustsson galloped to victory in the penultimate qualifying round of the 2010/2011 Rolex FEI World Cup Jumping series. There was an outpouring of emotion in the aftermath, and even hardened veteran Ludger Beerbaum, who slotted into third behind runner-up Edwina Alexander from Australia, expressed his amazement at having taken part in one of the most thrilling competitions seen on the international circuit in recent history.
“For any sport it is fantastic to see very talented up-and-coming young people, and what we saw today was the cream – it doesn’t come better than this, and we will remember today for a very long time,” said the German legend.
HIGH PRAISE Dutch course designer Louis Konickx earned high praise from riders all weekend and produced another master-piece for today’s test which saw 12 through to the second-round jump-off. With three home runners amongst them, the Swedish interest was always going to be strong, but pathfinders 21 year old Douglas Lindelow and the mare Talina left the door open when hitting the penultimate oxer while fellow-countryman, Peder Fredricson, was eliminated with H&M Arctic Aurora Borealis when they fell at the fifth fence on the new track. This rustic oxer had been the last in the opening round and as the 38 year old rider galloped down to it, the distance just refused to come up right – Fredricson asked for a long stand-off, the grey gelding tried to chip in an extra stride and the result was a crashing fall that left a muted atmosphere around the ring despite no apparent damage to either horse or rider.