Tag Archives: Martin Fuchs

Nayel Nassar and Martin Fuchs Hand in Hand on Top of the Masters Power Lido de Paris

Nayel Nassar & Can Can Della Caccia © Aléa pour EEM.

High jump contest the Lido de Paris Masters Power was the first highlight of the day at the Longines Masters of Paris. Seven of the seventeen pairs entered came from the Masters Two category and ten from the Masters One. Tied at 1.97 meter, Egypt’s Nayel Nassar and Switzerland’s Martin Fuchs are joint winners of the Masters One while the Netherlands’ Elise van de Mheen, the only rider from her category to clear 1.87 meter, was the best of the Masters Two section.

After an initial round at 1.45m, all riders but Italy’s Filipo Marco Bologni started in the first jump-off at 1.72m. With an extra 27cm, things were getting a bit trickier. Nonetheless, twelve pairs gave the second jump-off (1.87m) a go! Now, the added 15cm proved much more challenging. Of the Masters Two field, only The Netherlands’ Elise van de Mheen managed to clear the line. On the Masters One side, Nayel Nassar, France’s Philippe Rozier, and Martin Fuchs remained in contention. The Egyptian and the Swiss easily cleared the next round at 1.97m while Philippe Rozier’s Prestigio LS La Silla refused to launch himself at the impressive vertical.

The competition was then coming to an end. Both leaders had a final attempt at 2.07m, both a record height and a challenge with a 10 000 euros Super Bonus for all riders clearing over 2.05m at each leg of the Longines Masters Series. Were they going to be able to fly even higher? Despite their determination and the support of the Paris audience, neither managed to clear the huge jump. No Super Bonus, then, but a nonetheless superb victory for the riders who were both partnered with horses who were novices at this type of competition.

“This was a good class in which I had entered my Grand Prix horse Silver Shine. We gave a go at 2.07m and it didn’t work. 2.07m is actually quite high. Especially as it was Silver’s first puissance. I like entering this kind of class before a Grand Prix. The gymnastics are very good preparation,” explained the European champion Martin Fuchs. “It was Can Can Della Caccia’s first puissance. Honestly, I did not know how he would react. I’m not very experienced either at this kind of class. But he got better and better after each round. He felt like he kept growing up.”

Find the complete results HERE.

© 2019 Blizko Communication

Riders to Watch in Rolex Grand Prix at CHI Geneva

Photo: Rolex / Kit Houghton.

From 12-15 December 2019, show jumping fans will travel to Switzerland for what is widely regarded as the world’s greatest indoor competition, CHI Geneva. The event, which spans four days, marks the final Major of the year and will welcome the world’s best equestrian combinations. Each rider will compete in front of around 42,000 people at Palexpo, the biggest indoor jumping arena in the world, as they seek to gain show jumping’s highest honors.

Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping Rider Watch

Visitors attending the 2019 edition of CHI Geneva will witness world-class equestrian action at an event that has been voted the world’s best show jumping competition nine times. With several of the world’s most prolific horse-and-rider combinations set to compete, there will be numerous contenders vying to be crowned the next Rolex Grand Slam live contender, further adding to the hype of the highly anticipated event.

One of the favorites to claim this year’s title is legendary Swiss rider and World No. 1, Steve Guerdat. The Rolex Testimonee has built up a great run of form this season after winning the ‘Pan American’ Grand Prix presented by Rolex in Spruce Meadows this summer and finishing second in the 2019 Rolex Grand Prix at The Dutch Masters in March. Already a three-time winner of Rolex Grand Prix at CHI Geneva, Guerdat will be eager to impress once more in front of a vibrant home crowd.

American rider Kent Farrington sits just outside of the world’s top 10 but has already established himself as one of the best riders in the world after magnificently winning the 2019 Rolex Grand Prix of Aachen with his outstanding mare Gazelle. The Rolex Testimonee has been on fine form this season, making him a prime contender for the prestigious Rolex Grand Prix of Geneva title, which he previously claimed back in 2017.

Never far from success is Germany’s Daniel Deusser, who currently sits at third in the Jumping World Rankings. Given his recent form, including a second-place finish in the 2019 Rolex Grand Prix at CHIO Aachen back in July, Deusser is expected to be one of the top performers at this year’s event in Geneva.

Current World No. 2, Martin Fuchs, is another rider who will be looking to secure the Major win in his native Switzerland. The young rider has already achieved much success in his career, including a silver medal in the Individual Jumping at the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games™, and is the current European Champion. Fuchs’ recent results have helped the 26-year-old establish himself as one of the world’s very best competitors, so there will be a high level of expectation for him to finish off the year with his first Rolex Grand Prix title.

A field of 40 combinations will battle it out in the hope of seizing the final Major victory of the year in the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping at CHI Geneva, which promises to be a weekend of enormous competition starting on December 12th.

© 2019 Rolex – Rolex Grand Slam

Guerdat, Fuchs, Deusser Top Entry Lists as 7 of World’s Top 10 Head to Olympia

Seven of the world’s top ten show jumpers are set to compete at this year’s edition of Olympia, The London International Horse Show, taking place from 16-22 December 2019. The confirmed line-up will ensure a week of world-class competition, providing unmissable sport and entertainment to the 90,000 spectators due to attend.

World No. 1 Steve Guerdat will be returning to London, the scene of his 2012 Olympic individual gold medal, looking to ride out a spectacular season on a high. He will be joined by his Swiss compatriot, Martin Fuchs, the current World No. 2 and reigning individual European Champion.

Germany will also be sending a strong contingent, headed by World No. 3 Daniel Deusser, a recent winner at the CSI5* in Prague, alongside Christian Ahlmann, currently ranked ninth in the world and always a consistent performer at Olympia.  Adding to the German line-up is show jumping legend Marcus Ehning, who will be vying for a victory to round off a successful 2019 season.

From Belgium will be World No. 6 Pieter Devos, who is sure to mount a strong challenge following his recent victory in the FEI Jumping World Cup of Stuttgart. He will be joined by his 2019 European Championship gold medal winning teammate Jos Verlooy, along with Niels Bruynseels and Olivier Philippaerts. Flying the flag for the USA is FEI World Equestrians Games™ team gold medalist, Laura Kraut.

Following William Whitaker’s outstanding victory in last year’s Longines FEI Jumping World Cup at Olympia, British hopes will remain high for the 2019 Show, as a strong home contingent are set to take their place in the starting line-up.

Current World No. 4, Ben Maher, will be seeking to crown an exceptional year with success at Olympia, having already secured numerous 5* Grand Prix victories in 2019, as well as an individual silver medal at the FEI European Championships. Hot on his heels will be his London 2012 Olympic gold medal winning teammate Scott Brash, fresh from victory in the FEI Jumping World Cup in Verona in November.

Robert Whitaker, a winner at Olympia in 2018, is another to come to this year’s Show high in confidence following his FEI Jumping World Cup victory in Helsinki. He will be joined by Holly Smith, a member of the 2019 European Championship bronze medal winning team which secured Great Britain their ticket for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Guy Williams will be returning to Olympia looking to retain his Cayenne Puissance title, following a thrilling five-round contest in 2018 saw him finish equal first. Williams, notorious for his speed against the clock, will be sure to have the home crowd on their feet throughout the week, as he takes on old rivals William Funnell and Laura Renwick, both of whom are also renowned for their speed and agility.

Young riders Emily Moffitt, Amy Inglis, Harry Charles, and James Wilson round off the British contingent. All three come off the back of a strong 2019 season, which has included representing Great Britain at senior level in FEI Nations Cups throughout the season.

The complete list of Show Jumpers set to compete at the Show can be found here.

Simon Brooks-Ward, Show Director, said: “We’ve received an outstanding list of entries for Olympia, and are very much looking forward to welcoming the world’s best to the Show for what is set to be another fantastic competition. It’s rare for British fans to have the opportunity to witness so many quality athletes under one roof and we’re really excited to see how the action unfolds.”

To purchase tickets for Olympia, please visit www.olympiahorseshow.com or telephone the box office on 0871 230 5580.

For more information, please contact:
Gayle Jenkins / gjenkins@revolutionworld.com / +44 (0)203 176 0355

Martin Fuchs and Clooney: What Else?

Image copyright PSV.

It was certainly no easy task to overcome the difficulties of the course designed by Gregory Bodo for this Grand Prix Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Lyon 2019. In particular, the two combinations – the triple at number 7 and the double vertical at number 9 – gave the 40 riders who had qualified for this class a hard time. Several top riders got caught out, such as Simon Delestre and Pénélope Leprevost, who made mistakes on the triple with Hermes Ryan and Vancouver from Lanlore, and the German rider Daniel Deusser, who had a 4-point penalty on the double.

In fact, just thirteen riders found the solution on the first round. The American Jessica Springsteen was the first to do a double clear round and set the bar high with a fast time of 41.85 (second overall). Everyone tried to go faster by taking risks in this high-speed jump-off, but only one rider managed to finish in front of the American, and not just anyone! Riding his faithful Clooney 51, the young Swiss rider Martin Fuchs made his mark in style with a time of 41”27. The world number two – who was silver medallist at the last World Championships, and became European champion this summer in Rotterdam -retained the title he won in the arena in Lyon in 2018. “This is such a great win. Clooney was in great form today. It was amazing. I was lucky going into the double verticals in the first round, when he touched the bars slightly, but then he was very obedient for the rest of the course. I was also lucky to be among the last riders to take to the arena in the jump-off. I had the chance to look at Jessica’s horse, which has the same kind of stride as Clooney, and I wanted to try and jump the course like her. On the last jump, I just tried to remove one stride and that’s how I won,” said Martin Fuchs. Now at the top of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup ranking for Western Europe, the Swiss rider intends to continue on the circuit, but with other horses: “Clooney’s not going to do anymore World Cup stages. I just wanted to do one stage with him to make it to the finals. Normally, I would not have used him for this competition, because there are the Olympic Games next year. But I wanted the do the best stage with Clooney and so I chose Lyon. It was the right decision. I will do the stages in Stuttgart, Madrid, and London with other horses and then see who I take to the final.”

At the end of the class, the American Jessica Springsteen – who was second – said she was delighted with her horse, which she has been riding for almost a year and a half. “It took me almost six months to find my feet with her. She’s a very obedient horse. She was already great on Friday in the qualifying Grand Prix for the World Cup stage, so I am very happy with her. Being based in Europe and competing with the best in the world has really helped me to improve. But I must admit that the good results I’m having on the circuit are also due to the great complicity I have built with my horse. So, we’re doing just fine together.”

Third place went to the Belgian rider Peter Devos, who rode a quick jump-off, finishing within the same second in 41”95. “I was really happy with my horse today. She had a few weeks off and came back in good form. I looked at what Martin did and I know he’s always very fast. Same thing with Jessica. I had to be careful because my horse is not so easy to ride. When I go a little too fast, she can be a little hard to handle. So, I had to keep her calm and I did a good round with the right distances everywhere. There is just the line between the first two obstacles where I thought of removing a stride, but finally I decided against it because no one had tested that option.”

The last rider to set off in the jump-off was the Frenchman Julien Épaillard on Queeletta, and he put in a great performance. With a double clear round, the best-ranked French rider in the class took fifth place in this World Cup stage with a horse that he has only been riding since the beginning of the summer. “This is my first 5* Grand Prix with Queeletta so I’m really pleased; she jumped very well. I had a good weekend. I would have liked to be faster in the jump-off, but the others were better today and… I’ll be back,” he joked. Having already won the first round of the CSI 5* this weekend, this couple is certainly one to keep an eye on.

During the press conference, Grégory Bodo (the course designer) spoke about the layout of this Grand Prix for the 2019 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup stage in Lyon: “I watched the qualifying class at the Grand Prix on Friday evening, and I understood the approach I needed to adopt for today, despite the fairly large number of clear rounds. I wanted to make a very smooth course. It was quite long, but really with a horse’s mindset. Riders needed to gallop from beginning to end in the class. It should be noted that Lyon is one of the largest indoor arenas in the world, and I don’t think the horses were out of their comfort zone. Just as we wanted, the mistakes came from all over the course. I think there was a good first round and a good jump-off.”

JULIETTE FEYTOUT PEREZ
juliette@blizko-communication.com

Fuchs and Clooney Take Lyon by Storm Again

Martin Fuchs with Clooney. (FEI/Eric Knoll)

Switzerland’s Martin Fuchs and his brilliant gelding Clooney showed exactly why they are the superstars of the sport right now when scorching to victory in the third leg of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ 2019/2020 Western European League at Lyon in France.

The 27-year-old rider, who is reigning European champion and No. 2 on the current Longines world rankings, was back on familiar territory, having also won this leg 12 months ago with his same grey wonder-horse. And it was just another magic Sunday for the Swiss star and his equine flying machine when they romped to success once more in the 13-horse jump-off, rocketing to the top of the WEL League leaderboard.

They were chasing the target-time set by America’s Jessica Springsteen and RMF Zecilie who zoomed around the jump-off track in 41.85 seconds, the lovely 12-year-old mare almost clearing the wings of the oxer three from home as she put on an exhibition of enthusiastic athleticism. But, fifth-last to go, somehow Fuchs and Clooney put the result almost beyond doubt when stopping the timers just over half a second sooner.

“I was lucky to start at the end of the jump-off because I could watch Jessica as I know her horse has about the same stride as Clooney. So I planned to do like her, except I made one less stride to the last fence which made me win today!” — Martin Fuchs (SUI)

French course designer, Gregory Bodo, described the 14-fence first-round course as “quite long but horse-friendly,” and it was the triple combination at seven and the double at fence nine that claimed most victims along with the time-allowed of 84 seconds. However, 13 found the key, and 27-year-old Springsteen really put it up to the rest of them with her breathtaking ride when third to go against the clock.

No-one had really challenged her until Fuchs set off with all guns blazing, but once the Swiss rider put 41.27 seconds on the board there were still four more to follow, and none of them were shrinking violets. However, his compatriot and World No. 1 Steve Guerdat (Venard de Cerisy) clipped the penultimate vertical, and despite being double-clear the final three – Italy’s Emanuele Gaudiano (Chalou), Belgium’s Pieter Devos (Claire Z), and Frenchman Julien Epaillard (Queeletta) – didn’t jostle the leading pair out of place, Devos taking third when breaking the beam in 41.95.

Talking about her mare RMF Zecilie, runner-up Springsteen described her as “an amazing horse – it took me about six months to get to know her but now we are all set up and she is great!”

Fuchs meanwhile has the world at his feet, and is already looking forward to next year and what it will bring. “It’s a big victory today. Clooney was in great shape and he jumped wonderfully,” he said, adding that he’s not specifically targeting any more Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ qualifiers with his super-champ.

“I just wanted to do one (qualifier) with him so I can take him to the Final if I need to, but because of the Olympic Games next year the plan is not to take him to Las Vegas. I will go to Verona, Stuttgart, and London with other horses to try to qualify, and if I do then I will decide which horse I will bring,” the Swiss rider explained.

With or without Clooney, he looks a very good bet to make the cut to the Longines 2020 Final which will take place in Las Vegas, USA from 15 to 19 April, especially since he already has more than half the points required at this early stage of the 14-leg Western European League which moves on to Verona, Italy next weekend.

FULL RESULTS

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

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

Championship Decider on Knife Edge as Knights Take Pole in New York

Ben Maher of the London Knights aboard Explosion W. Photo by GCL/Stefano Grasso.

New York, NY – In a script worthy of the Broadway stage, GCL New York Round 1 saw the London Knights claim pole position – propelling themselves back into the 2019 title fight as Saturday’s Championship decider rests on a knife edge.

London Knights’ formidable combination of Martin Fuchs with Clooney 51 and Ben Maher aboard Explosion W blew away the competition in a jaw-dropping class, taking pole position and every advantage possible heading into Saturday’s showdown.

However, just one rail away after the results are the current ranking leaders St. Tropez Pirates, with Pieter Devos and Dani G. Waldman collecting just 4 faults in the complex class to put them within touching distance of a podium – and the Championship title.

In a drama-fueled day, the Shanghai Swans – who were placed second in the overall rankings so far – were eliminated from the competition after Peder Fredricson and Zacramento unexpectedly parted ways during the first round of action. Their elimination would mean the team cannot improve on their score, dropping the Swans out of contention for the title.

Martin Fuchs spoke after their round: “It helped that we have two of the best horses in the world and are in great shape, so it’s a great start. My horse Clooney is in the best shape he’s ever been now.”

Teammate and team manager Ben Maher revealed the team’s tactics: “Martin and I sat down and we had a plan this week. We have our two best horses here, and it’s the first time we’ve teamed them up together.”

But the experienced British Olympic gold medalist remained clear-headed: “One minute you can be winning, the next you can be out, and every score counts. We’ve come with one of the best teams possible this weekend to put pressure on the others, so we’ll hope to produce more clear rounds tomorrow.”

Constant van Paesschen Dazzles in LGCT New York Opener

Victory was sweet for Belgium when Constant van Paesschen and his striking 10-year-old black stallion Vendetta Treize took top call in the opening event of the inaugural Longines Global Champions Tour New York. Eduardo Alvarez Aznar (ESP) claimed the runner-up position riding F, while Abdel Saïd (EGY) rounded out the top-three podium finishes on Axel 111 Z.

With his mount’s owner and breeder, Amandine Wittouck, watching from the sidelines, van Paesschen posted a blistering clear over Uliano Vezzani’s (ITA) opening CSI5* track. Of the round, he touted: “The horse jumped very well and it’s a very nice feeling to win. I wanted to try and leave one out somewhere, but I saw that it wasn’t coming up like I wanted so I stuck to the plan. The horse really tried, and I was crossing my fingers!

“To realize [an event] at this venue is unbelievable,” continued van Paesschen of the latest breathtaking addition to the LGCT circuit on Governors Island in New York, NY. “We have been riding all year in unbelievable locations, but this one stands out.”

Panoramic views of downtown Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty provided a quintessential backdrop for the first day of competition at the Longines Global Champions Tour of New York and the riders rose to the test.

More info: www.gcglobalchampions.com.

Contact: Jennifer Wood
jennifer@jumpmediallc.com

Fuchs Takes Individual Jumping Gold in Fighting Finish

Martin Fuchs. (FEI/Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Martin Fuchs became the sixth Swiss rider in the 62-year history of the event to claim individual Jumping gold at the Longines FEI European Championships 2019 in Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

At last year’s FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Tryon, USA and again at the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final in Gothenburg, Sweden earlier this year, the talented 27-year-old had to settle for silver despite heroic efforts with his brilliant grey gelding Clooney. He at last stood on the top step of the podium when pinning Great Britain’s Ben Maher (37) into silver medal spot and young Belgian star, 23-year-old Jos Verlooy, who was a member of last Friday’s gold medal-winning team, into bronze.

Just 12 of the top 25 went into the second round over another superb track designed by The Netherlands’ Louis Konickx. Some protesters ran into the arena as Dutchman Marc Houtzager and Sterrehof’s Calimero took their turn, but this consummate horseman and his experienced 12-year-old gelding jumped clear to finish in eighth place at the end of the day.

In the closing stages, defending European champions Peder Fredricson with H&M All In, Sweden’s Henrik von Eckermann with Toveks Mary Lou, and reigning world champion Simone Blum from Germany with DSP Alice all faulted at the triple combination before it came down to a fight to the finish between the top three.

Fuchs had moved up from overnight bronze into silver medal spot when Verlooy and his chestnut gelding Igor made a mistake at the triple combination first time out, but Maher held onto the lead with yet another extraordinary round from Explosion W.

Verlooy was foot-perfect second time out, collecting just a single time fault, and when Fuchs did exactly the same then all the pressure was on the British rider who was last into the ring. And he looked to have gold in the bag until the pole on water-tray vertical two from home fell to gasps from the crowd. It would be the Swiss celebrating.

“It looked very much like I would be second again. Ben has been great over the past two years and especially at this championship again. I didn’t think I would beat him or that he would make a fault, but obviously I am very happy to be winning here and to finally not have only the silver medal!” Fuchs said.

Looking back on how this week of competition has played out, he said, “I had a fault the first day in the Speed class; it was my mistake I took a lot of risk and Clooney struggled at the last combination, but he has been great every day, getting better and better over each round which is one of his best qualities. And I was saying today before going into the final, if I do my job and do the small things right, he won’t let me down!”

The first person to give him a congratulatory hug was Irishman Sean Vard. “Sean has been with me a couple of years and is a great groom, friend, supporter, and the best person that has ever followed me to the shows. And my family, my parents, and my owner Luigi – they are always here supporting me.

“Unfortunately, my girlfriend Paris couldn’t be here this week; she’s in California and she’s been up all night to watch me and I had a little chat with her before my second round today. She just said don’t worry you will win it; she’s been saying that for the last three days and I kept saying don’t jinx it, touch wood, touch wood!” — Martin Fuchs (SUI)

He thanked Clooney’s owner, Luigi Baleri, who has been awarded the IJOC Horse Owner of the Year title. “He’s always a big support and he’s like a second father, driving me to shows since I was a Junior!” said Fuchs whose first major victory was gold at the Youth Olympic Games in 2010.

Clearly disappointed, Maher was still delighted with this week’s results with Explosion W. “On the day I wasn’t good enough to beat Martin, but all of these horses deserve to win – I made this one mistake and I’m very happy that if anyone has to beat me it is Martin!” he said.

Verlooy said he was delighted for his horse, Igor. “He jumped great and I’m very happy that I have given him this medal; he really deserved it. He is by Emerald and he’s really stepping into his father’s footsteps and I’m very proud of that. At the beginning of the week if you told me I was going to have this bronze, I would have been fine with that, so I’m not complaining!”

Results here.

Watch highlights here.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

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

USA Wins $150,000 Nations Cup CSIO4* at WEF

McLain Ward and Contagious. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 2, 2019 – In the 18-year history of the Nations Cup at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), there had only been one jump-off to determine the gold medal. On Saturday, March 2, 2019, another jump-off took place and garnered the United States of America their seventh victory in the history of the class. The team, consisting of Wilton Porter, Beezie Madden, Adrienne Sternlicht, McLain Ward, and Chef d’Equipe Robert Ridland, took the gold medal in the $150,000 Nations Cup CSIO4*, one of the highlight events of week 8 of WEF.

The winning nation was represented by Porter on Caletto Cabana, owned by Sleepy P Ranch LLC, Madden on Abigail Wexner’s Chic Hin D Hyrencourt, Sternlicht riding Toulago for Starlight Farms 1 LLC, and Ward on the Beechwood Stables LLC-owned mount, Contagious.

Martin Fuchs and Faberlys Find Victory in $50,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Grand Prix

Switzerland’s Martin Fuchs and his mount, Faberlys, owned by SPCS, topped a 39-horse field to win the $50,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Grand Prix on Saturday afternoon in the International Ring.

Of those 39 entries, six navigated the first round, Steve Stephens-designed track without fault to advance to the jump-off, where Fuchs had what he considered the advantage of returning second to last. With the time to beat set at 44.14 seconds by Canada’s Tiffany Foster and Caipiranja, owned by Artisan Farms, LLC, Fuchs elected to go for it, shaving nearly two seconds off of Foster’s time to finish in 42.22 seconds for the win. Foster’s time held up for second place, while third place with a time of 44.77 seconds went to David Blake of Ireland riding Keoki for owner Pine Hollow Farm.

Rindy Dominguez and MTM Casablanca Emerge Victorious in Hunt Ltd. Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’6” 36 & Over

Competitors in the Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’6” 36+ division returned to the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter Field on Saturday to contest the final three classes of the division for a chance at the champion and reserve titles. With two first place ribbons, Rindy Dominguez of Barrington, RI took the champion title aboard her own MTM Casablanca.

Dominguez and the 11-year-old bay mare earned two firsts, a fourth, fifth, and eighth over the two days of competition which left them 2.5 points ahead of the reserve winner. The mare has been paired with Dominguez for approximately a year and a half but is just making her first Winter Equestrian Festival debut this season.

“She was imported as a jumper, but I bought her about three weeks after she was imported. We’ve spent the fall learning how to be a hunter,” Dominguez explained. “She’s been so lovely. This is her first experience at WEF and her first time at the 3’6” height, which is also something I haven’t done in about two years so it’s very exciting.”

For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

David Oberkircher and Upper Rise to the Top of the $25,000 Hermès Under 25 Grand Prix

David Oberkircher and Upper. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 17, 2019 – The sixth week of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) concluded on Sunday, February 17, with jumper competition on the grass derby field at Equestrian Village at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL. David Oberkircher (USA) and Upper, owned by Southfields Farm LLC, rose to the top of the $25,000 Hermès Under 25 Grand Prix.

Riding out on the beautiful grass derby field in the morning, some of the best up-and-coming show jumpers in the world competed for top grand prix honors. There were 43 entries in the class, with 13 of those going clear to advance to the jump-off.

Martin Fuchs and Cristo Top $25,000 CP Grand Prix

Taking advantage of an opportunity to show on the grass derby field at Equestrian Village, the individual silver medalist at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 was able to speed to the lead of the class. Martin Fuchs (SUI) rode Jacques Bodenmuller’s Cristo to a blazing time of 33.733 seconds to win the $25,000 CP Grand Prix, the closing event of WEF 6.

Twenty-four entries went to task on the first round, and five went clear to contest the jump-off. Fuchs went first on Cristo, setting an unbeatable time.

“I didn’t really like that I was first to go with him,” said Fuchs. “I would have preferred that my inexperienced horse was first to go so I could do a normal round with him, and then do a quick round with Cristo, to see how fast I had to go. Since I honestly really didn’t know the other riders in the jump-off, I just thought I didn’t want to be second, so I took the forward option, which was good, but now I ended up being quite a lot faster.”

Coming closest was Caelinn Leahy (IRL) on Steve Schaefer’s Dymendy. They finished in 36.206 seconds. Third place went to Hector Florentino (DOM) riding Venus, owned by Raylyn Farms Inc., in 37.330 seconds.

Final Day of Hunter Week Closes Out with Huge Wins for Coco Fath, Brenna Magness, and Hannah Hoch

The final day of WCHR Hunter Week at the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival came to a close on Sunday, February 17, with top junior and amateur hunter riders returning for one final day of special competition. Well-braided horses and riders in shadbellies once again took to the International Arena at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center as the day kicked off with the $5,000 Peggy Cone Memorial WCHR Adult Hunter Classic.

As one of the largest classes of Hunter Week, the classic saw more than 70 top hunter combinations contest for a chance to make the top-12 callback for the second round of competition. Coco Fath of Fairfield, CT and Akinda were late in the order of go for the first round, but rocketed right to the top of the leaderboard with a top score of 89.00 points for their effort. While 11 of the class’s best-scoring riders returned before Fath to contest the second course, none could overcome Fath and the Hillside Farm LLC’s 13-year-old Warmblood mare. The team’s second round score of 81.00 points gave them a combined total of 170.00 points which was 2.5 points higher than second place winner Ava Lindsay and Fabricio 23.

For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Martin Fuchs and Clooney 51 Capture First Five-Star Grand Prix Win of the WEF

Martin Fuchs and Clooney 51. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 9, 2019 – The first five-star competition of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) brought together top show jumpers to compete in the $391,000 Fidelity Investments® Grand Prix CSI 5* on Saturday, February 9, at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. Martin Fuchs (SUI) and Clooney 51, owned by Luigi Baleri, captured the first big win of the circuit.

Out of 40 entries in the grand prix, 18 were clear over the course designed by Kelvin Bywater of Great Britain. It was a footrace in the jump-off, with nine finding the path to double clear, but it would come down to who took the biggest chances to see who would stand atop the first five-star podium of the 2019 circuit.

Alannah Argyle and Norway Win THIS National Children’s Medal 15-17

Twenty-seven combinations headed to the South Ring at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center on Saturday for the THIS National Children’s Medal 15-17. The medal is one of many top equitation classes offered for junior riders throughout the 12-week circuit at the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival. Alannah Argyle of Dover, MA captured the win aboard the 13-year-old Warmblood gelding, Norway.

For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.