Tag Archives: Lukas Wacha

A Golden Day for the Dutch as Rixt van der Horst Enjoys Para-Dressage Glory in Tryon

Rixt van der Horst and Findsley ©Sportfot.

Netherlands star Rixt van der Horst reflected on the “amazing” feeling of winning another Gold medal after she headlined day two of Adequan® Para-Dressage at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018.

Van der Horst, who took double Gold at the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games™ in France, sealed top spot in the Grade III Individual Championship on her bay mare Findsley.

Their score of 73.735% edged long-time leader Natasha Baker, of Great Britain, into second place as she excelled with new top horse Mount St John Diva Dannebrog, while American Rebecca Hart and El Corona Texel collected Bronze to become her country’s first world Para-Dressage medalist.

“I am really thrilled,” Van der Horst said. “It is so amazing to be world champion again. During my test, I didn’t realize it was that good.

“I was just riding my test and doing what I do and it was not until afterwards that I realized it was good. In the beginning I was nervous, but I relaxed during the test and it got better and better. It’s our first international competition together and I am so proud of her.”

Baker, a mainstay of Britain’s all-conquering Para-Dressage teams in recent years, was similarly delighted with the performance of her horse in what was a major championship debut for the partnership, as it had been for Van der Horst and Findsley.

“She was amazing, so, so, good and she went in there like she owned it,” Baker said. “I am just so proud of everything that we have achieved in such a short space of time.

“It is an honor to get called up for the team, especially after such a short space of time. I’ve only had her since January, and to have done everything we have and for the selectors to have the trust in us to come and do our best is fantastic.”

Italy’s Sara Morganti came out on top in the Grade I Individual Championship, winning an anticipated head-to-head battle with Singapore’s current world number one Laurentia Tan.

The pair was drawn as the last to two to ride in Tryon Stadium, and did not disappoint, with Morganti’s score of 74.750% on Royal Delight enough for victory as Tan and Fuerst Sherlock finished on 73.750%. Germany’s Elke Philipp claimed the bronze medal aboard Fuerst Sinclair with 73.143%.

“It was wonderful,” said Morganti, who won world Individual Gold and Silver medals in 2014.

“It’s incredible. I’ve had a very difficult year because of health problems and for a moment I thought I couldn’t go on.

“My horse was amazing and I have to thank my trainers who have been with me all along the way. I am happy because I wanted to get a medal for me, but also for them.”

Tan, meanwhile, added, “It’s really important to get a medal for my country. I felt relaxed and I just had to keep going.”

Philipp could scarcely believe the scale of her achievement as she completed the medal podium.

“I can’t have any words for this,” she said. “I hoped that I would win a medal, but now I have a medal! The arena is perfect for me and my horse and I think we did a good job.”

Long Standing Partnership Catapults Sheena Bendixen to Christie’s International Real Estate Vaulting Freestyle

Denmark’s Sheena Bendixen won the Individual Female’s Freestyle of the Christie’s International Real Estate’s Vaulting competition at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Wednesday, her score of 8.539 piping Germany’s Janika Derks and Sarah Kay.

Sheena Bendixen and Klintholms Ramstein ©Sportfot

The 25-year-old Bendixen, ranked in the world’s top ten, danced to victory and credited her long-standing partnership with black gelding Klintholms Ramstein and lunger Lasse Kristensen for the success. She won her first European Bronze medal with the same duo seven years ago in 2011.

“One stand was a bit shaky, but I just continued and smiled,” Bendixen said, earning top score for the Trakehner breed horse Ramstein, owned by her groom.

“We call him the psycho mouse. He loves the arena and always says ‘Here, look at me!’ I wanted to dance my emotions at this WEG, relaxation, power, elegance, harmony – everything should be in it,” Bendixen said.

“I had warned her that there is nothing more difficult than really dancing on a horse, not only with expressive hands, but also with your feet and she did it,” Kristensen said, a former world class Vaulter himself.

Janika Derks scored 9.473 for her technique, the best of the morning. For her Freestyle she used the music “La Terre en Ciel” that had already brought a Bronze medal on ice, dancing for Germany.

“I wanted it to look easy, soft and fluffy, quite a contrast to my usual vaulting. I am a very technical and strong vaulter and to show elegance and harmony is the hardest for me,” Derks said.

“It is always the same, the easier something looks the harder it is,” Derks’ lunger Jessica Lichtenberg said.

Several female competitors managed to dance a complete story. U.S. athlete Tessa Dirks danced to the music of the movie “Little Red Riding Hood.”

“I am kind of an upbeat person and I had to pretend to be afraid which is not quite like me. The panic of the wolf is more like the panic of the vaulter of not finishing on time.”

That fear was unnecessary because she finished on rank 7, with lunger Christoph Lensing, a double WEG Silver medalist himself.

Germany’s Thomas Brüsewitz Turns In His Second Vaulting Win at Tryon 2018

Germany’s Thomas Brüsewitz won the Individual Freestyle at Christie’s International Real Estate’s Vaulting discipline at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Wednesday, duplicating his success from Tuesday’s compulsory. Vaulting for a score of 8.987, he kept France’s Lambert Leclezio and Jannis Drewell for Germany at bay.

It was fireworks in the arena when world No.3, Brüsewitz did his Freestyle following the theme of the movie “The Truman Show.”

“The person in the show is a star because he is true to himself, a real person. Our vaulting is true as well. I thought this a fitting theme for the world championship here.”

Brüsewitz did not go the limit and kept it safe, omitting one handstand.

“When I had my signature movement out of the way, the flic flac backwards, I felt I should play it safe. I will keep it up my sleeve for the final Freestyle,” the student at a sports university in Cologne, Germany said.

FEI World Cup™ winner Jannis Drewell “danced with wolves” for his Freestyle, collecting 8.924 with four scores of 9 from the judges’ panel.

“I had this theme ten years ago for my very first national youth championship and I thought it was a good moment to come up with it again. It was much better than ten years ago.”

French Lambert Leclezio was not happy with his performance, finishing on 8.832.

“Two big movements did not go to plan, but maybe people on the outside did not notice.”

Austria’s Lindner/Wacha Set to Defend Their Pairs Title in Vaulting

The sparkle of 15,000 rhinestones lit the Indoor Arena in the Christie’s International Real Estate’s Vaulting competition at Tryon 2018, when the world’s best pair met for their first round of Freestyle.

Austria’s Jasmin Lindner and Lukas Wacha look set to defend their WEG title from 2014. They scored an average of 9.138, topping their Freestyle performance at WEG 2014.

Wearing a black-and-white costume, they interpreted the theme of the literature piece Chess Novel. It was the first time the freestyle was shown in public. It has been a work in progress since they started planning it two years ago.

“It was a wonderful feeling to go out and to know it will stun everybody. When you then get it all together at the right time the feeling is just hard to describe,” said Lukaas Wacha.

Their costumes had been handcrafted by both of their grandmothers, who are tailors in Vienna and Salzburg. It had been Jasmin Linder’s job then to attach the close to 15,000 rhinestones.

“Luckily Svarovski sits in Tyrolia where those two come from,” said team chief Manfred Reber.

The world’s highest ranked pair Italy’s Lorenzo Lupacchini and Silvia Stopazzini set the tone for a great competition. Vaulting as a pair for two years, they came out first into the competition and vaulted for a 9.057, earning six scores of 9s.

Breathing down their necks, only 0.001 point behind, are Germany’s Janika Derks and Johannes Kay. Her neon pink costume stood out against horse Dark Beluga when they showed their stunning lifts and elevations, defying gravity.

For more information on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 and to view start lists and results, please visit www.Tryon2018.com.

German Clean Sweep in Male Individual Final, Austrians Dominate in Pas de Deux

The reigning world and defending European champions, Jasmin Lindner and Lukas Wacha from Austria, clinched the Pas de Deux title once again the FEI European Vaulting Championships 2015 in Aachen, Germany today. (FEI/Dirk Caremans)

Aachen (GER), 22 August 2015 – Host nation athletes dominated the Individual Male Final while Austria claimed both gold and bronze in the Pas de Deux at the FEI European Vaulting Championships 2015 in Aachen (GER) today. Over 5,000 spectators roared with delight as relative newcomer, Jannis Drewell, pinned fellow-Germans Thomas and Viktor Brusewitz in silver and bronze when producing a stunning final Male Freestyle test.

But there was no big surprise when the reigning world and defending European champions, Austria’s Jasmin Lindner and Lukas Wacha, came out on top in the Pas de Deux.

Pas de Deux

The nine pairs in the Pas de Deux were representing seven countries, and former Vaulting superstar, Joanne Eccles, was lunger for the British pair who was first into the arena this afternoon. Eccles, who claimed Pas de Deux and individual gold at last year’s Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Normandy, France didn’t put herself forward for individual selection for the 2015 Championships, but she has been training Andre McLachlan and Rebecca Norval and their equally inexperienced horse, Norval, who got the competition underway with a score of 5.459.

Hungary’s Reka Gadolla and Reka Csordas upped the target when posting 6.806 before Switzerland’s Zoe Maruccio and Syra Schmid moved out in front when putting 7.171 on the board. Dutch sisters, Carola and Esther Sneekes were awarded 6.690 by judges Jochen Schilffarth (GER), Veronique Girard (FRA), Gaby Benz (ITA), Pavla Krauspe (SVK), Doris Knotter (AUT) and Monika Eriksson (SWE) before Switzerland’s Evelyn Freund and Stefanie Millinger set the arena alight with a great test that put them way ahead on a mark of 8.672.

Their powerfully-built horse, Robin, supported their adventurous programme that drew gasps of delight from the spectators and a strong technical mark of 9.005 from the judging panel. But the Swiss pair were immediately overtaken by Germany’s Pia Engelberty and Torben Jacobs. Lunged by former champion Patric Looser, the duo forged another new lead when earning 8.725.

Extremely polished pair

Jasmin Lindner and Lukas Wacha are an extremely polished pair, however, and with their eye-catching 1.90-metre-tall gelding Bram they were always favourites to take the title. Once again they combined power, balance and seamless transitions throughout their two-minute programme, and when 8.990 went up in lights there was no question about the destination of the gold medals. The last pair, Germany’s Gera-Marie Grun and Just Van Gerven finished just off the podium when slotting into fourth with a score of 8.469.

With today’s results added to those from yesterday, Lindner and Wacha completed on a final tally of 8.853 for gold while Engelberty and Jacobs rounded their score up to 8.725 for silver and Freund and Millinger took the bronze with 8.557.

“I’m very happy; it’s a super feeling to be here with so many spectators applauding. I can’t describe it!” Lindner said this evening. And silver medallist Torben Jacobs was also delighted with his result. “We wanted to show a Freestyle with a lot of expression. These were two good days for us,” the German vaulter said.

Male Individual

It was a close-fought all-German affair in the battle for the Male Individual title, with Thomas Brusewitz pinning the eventual champion Jannis Drewell into runner-up spot in this morning’s Technical test in which Viktor Brusewitz lined up in third.

Hungary’s Balazs Bence set the target in this afternoon’s finale to decide the medal placings, scoring 7.808 with his Aladdin-themed programme when seventh to go of the 15 starters. And then Clement Taillez went out in front on 8.052 before fellow-Frenchman Vincent Haennel’s brillliant dismount from Quartz d’Olbiche helped him establish the short-term advantage when awarded 8.133.

Thomas Brusewitz’s tiger-stripe costume has been attracting plenty of attention and, even with an early mistake, the younger of the Brusewitz brothers went well ahead with 8.563 for his performance. But older brother Viktor presented a routine that was all drama from start to finish. Together with his imposing horse, Rockard, and lunger Winnie Schluter, he brought the crowd to their feet when a mark of 8.563 went up on the board. But the excitement wasn’t over yet.

Electricity in the air

There was real electricity in the air as Jannis Drewell and his grey horse, Diabolus, began the final test of the competition. The 24-year-old has made a big impact this season, but in his very first Championships it was difficult to know what to expect from him. He has risen to the challenge with incredible ease, however, and having been highly competitive all week, he just blew all the rest away with a spell-binding final performance today.

In his costume, representing a monk in orange robes, and with his musical score from Kung Fu Panda, he showed extraordinary suspension and amazing speed, even managing to include some kick-boxing as he racked up big scores. He clearly knew he’d done something special despite a relatively cautious final dismount, and he burst into tears when he heard he had been awarded 8.732. Combined with his results from the Compulsory and Technical tests along with his first Freestyle, he was left on the winning total of 8.369, ahead of Thomas Brusewitz with 8.343 and Viktor Brusewitz, whose score rounded up to 8.157.

Chose themselves

German team coach, Kai Vorberg, talked about his athletes who proved untouchable for the medals today. “We have a lot of strong vaulters, at least five or six who could go to the Championships, but these guys chose themselves. It was very close (for selection). It’s not hard to coach these guys; the main thing is that they act as a team. We didn’t know who would be the winner, but they worked really well together and it has been really special.”

Silver medallist Thomas Brusewitz said: “It’s been like a dream competing in this crazy event in Aachen, to run into this great arena was amazing! We all pushed each other to reach our goals and together we produced great sport this week!”

For more information on the FEI European Championships 2015 in Aachen. visit www.aachen2015.de.

Full results of FEI European Championships Aachen 2015 here.

Facts and Figures:

9 pairs representing seven countries – Austria, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands and Switzerland – battled it out in today’s Pas de Deux Final at the FEI European Vaulting Championships 2015 in Aachen, Germany.

130 athletes from 15 nations have been competing for individual, pas-de-deux and squad medals over the last three days.

47 vaulters targeting the male and female individual medals, 18 went for gold in pas-de-deux and a massive 66 athletes competing in squad.

Austria’s Jasmin Lindner and Lukas Wacha, the current world and European Pas de Deux champions, re-claimed the European title.

15 vaulters from nine countries – Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Slovakia and Switzerland – competed in the Male Freestyle Final.

A new Male champion was crowned when 24-year-old Jannis Drewell from Germany claimed the individual title.

German brothers Thomas and Viktor Brusewitz also claimed silver and bronze.


German coach Ulla Ramge, when asked about having three German vaulters on the podium: “I hoped for it! It was always possible because these guys showed that they could win. They all competed in four rounds of competition here and they needed to keep their concentration over the four rounds, but they produced the right performances at the right time, so it happened!”

Viktor Brusewitz GER, Individual Male bronze: “I made mistakes in the Kur, but I tried today to fight back and it worked!”

Ulla Ramge, talking about the new moves introduced in the Technical test: “There was an FEI Seminar in the spring and it was a matter of practice. There are two different, new exercises – some like the old moves and some like the new ones. We had no big problem with it.

“The two moves are a jump from kneeling forward to standing backwards – this is a great challenge for the balance – and the needle move. It’s really more of a challenge for the boys, but they did well.”

FEI YouTube

By Louise Parkes

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