05 May 2018
Ben Maher & Explosion W Sweep LGCT Madrid
Ben Maher stood out on the Longines Global Champions Tour of Madrid with a spectacular day on Saturday, May 5, 2018 that finished with victory in the LGCT Grand Prix of Madrid CSI5* aboard new mount Explosion W. The British rider has been on an upswing as of late, with strong results that included 2nd place in last month’s LGCT Grand Prix of Shanghai with the 9-year-old KWPN gelding (Chacco Blue) that is owned by his sponsor, Poden Farms. It was a close victory ahead of a rare, joint 2nd place in the grand prix recorded by Belgium’s Nicola Philippaerts on Harley vd Bisschop (Dulf vd Bisschop) and Spain’s Eduardo Alvarez Aznar on Rokfeller de Pléville (The Arc de Triomphe). the Pieter Devos of Belgium was pushed to 4th place on Espoir (Surcouf de Revel) despite a double clear that broke 40 seconds in the jumpoff. Spain had plenty to cheer about, with Paola Amibilia jumping to the first clear in Round 1 with Gaudi. The Spanish rider would finish 10th in the ten-horse jumpoff. For Maher, it will remain a day to remember; he took both titles in the individual 1.55m class that is also the Global Champions League final preceding the grandprix. Indvidually he was best with Explosion W and also won the team ranking of the same class. “It was really about riding the course how it needed to be ridden and it was great sport,” said Maher about the jumpoff. “Explosion has always been a good horse, but this year he as really come forward.” Complete Results Belgian riders Belgium, which was in great shape on Friday, where the young Belgian sprinters won the Linz Nations Cup with Gilles Dunon's double clear rounds on Fou de toi vs Keihoeve (Toulon) and Yves Vanderhasselt on his big promise, Jeunesse (Eldorado vd Zeshoeke) who will become a mother in the night of a filly of Mylord Carthago!With a clear round in the second set, Frederic Vernaet and Just a Gamble (Toulon), Wilm Vermeir will not even have to start in the second run! Cups of nations that will be successful in Belgium as the junior team won a victory in Fontainebleau ahead of Ireland, Germany and France while Switzerland won the Young Riders in front of Denmark, Germany and Belgium.
27 April 2018
Philipp Weishaupt Wins Longines Grand Prix at CSIO5* Šamorín
Philipp Weishaupt picked up a big Friday paycheck at X-Bionic Sphere in Šamorín, Slovakia when he won the €150,000.00 Longines Grand Prix CSIO5*. New this year, the FEI has switched up the schedule of events during its Nations Cup Series—the grand prix is now on Friday afternoons to make way for the Nations Cup held on Sunday afternoons. At this, the opening leg of the Europe Division 1, held for the first time at X-Bionic Sphere, the crowd was light but enthusiastic for the Longines Grand Prix. The two-round class with no jumpoff required a double clear to be at the top of the placings, and the German rider was fastest in Round 2 with Asathir, an 11-year-old SEFR (Diamant De Semilly x Papillon Rouge). Luis Francisco de Azevedo, who was chasing qualification for WEG consideration for Team Brazil, placed a close 2nd with his top mount Comic. Azevedo also placed 2nd in the CSI5* Rolex Grand Prix at WEF in Florida with the 11-year-old KWPN stallion (Verdi TN x Heartbreaker). Egypt’s Abdel Said placed 3rd with Callisto, the same horse formerly ridden by Cian O’Connor. Said acquired the ride on the 11-year-old KWPN gelding (Quasimodo Z x Jokinal de Bornival) last fall. Said also picked up 1st place in the day’s previous class, the 1.45m Prize Heineken, riding Beauminka (Jodoxus x Akteur). The draw has been set for the eight nations taking part in Sunday’s Nations Cup (with Switzerland first to go), and meanwhile, the riders will have Saturday to rest their top horses and themselves at the state of the art X-Bionic Sphere facility.
13 March 2018
Jérôme Guery & Dominque Hendrix Form New Partnership
Longtime associates Jérome Guery and Dominique Hendrickx, both of Belgium, have announced a partnership together. Jérome will take over the ride on Bacardi les Hauts (Rexar du Houssolt), an 11-year-old SBS that was previously campaigned by Hendricxx, and two promising 9-year-olds that Guery acquired this winter during the Sunshine Tour, with owners Alexander Oancea and Luc Tilleman, will now gain mileage and experience with Hencricx. "I am fortunate to have a talented rider like Alain Colette to train the horses at the stables, but unfortunately, at the moment when we are on the road in competition at the high level, it is very difficult to give enough experience to our young horses,” Guery explains. “The five stars often only allow us to bring two horses. The opportunity that Dominique Hendrickx offers me is great because he will be able to train my horses in three and four star level competitions, and I can campaign Bacardi les Hauts which is a horse which, I think, suits me well. " Hendrickx agrees: “It's a difficult decision obviously but I try to be realistic and I must admit, that for me it's not easy to always have access to the level of competition that the horse deserves. In addition, the new rules of the FEI, with access to competitions according to the ranking, and the fact that the countries qualified for the super league [FEI Nations Cup series] have less access to second league contests make it difficult for me to get into the higher level shows. I think Bacardi deserves to get his chance for the highest level. He is ready. I love competition, of course, but it's not ideal for a horse with top ability to do two and three stars, and then getting a chance from time to time in a five star. In recent months, it has happened a few times that I propose to Jerome to campaign one of his horses in the three stars in Morocco or Oliva, and then one by one, the idea has made its way and today, We will truly develop a partnership in order to make each horse evolve, even if, as always, sales remain the ultimate goal. "