ROYAL MONACO WEB MAGAZINE
AVRIL BLOG RANK 75
Flying finish for last to go Cassio Rivetti for the double.
For the second time this weekend Cassio Rivetti finished in first place as the last to go giving a great climax to the Trofeo Repsol. Rivetti already won the opening speed competition on Friday and today on Böckmanns Lazio he won with a time of 58.71.
Michael Whitaker set the competition alight with a time of 59.82 on a new ride, MCB Maya and looked full of confidence as they led the way from the fourteenth to go. Michael looked assured of Victory until the last to go when Cassio made up the time over the last two fences to catch the British rider. Finishing second once again after his good finish in the Global Champions Tour Grand Prix last night.
(Photo credits: Sportfot/GCT)
The master of faster, Richard Spooner, blitzed around the track with Billy Bianca to attack Billy Twomey’s early targets that brought the competition alight. With a time of 60.66 Richard ended up third. This CSI5* competition had an interesting track designed by Frank Rothenberger with the Longines serpentine combination made for some tight turns to make up valuable seconds on the early part of the track.
Great Britain and Ireland triumph in the Global Champions Tour of Spain.
British and Ireland took centre stage at the Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Spain seizing the top two podium places after a thrilling jump off. Ben Maher clinched victory on Tripple X III jumping a fast clear in 41.35 with Michael Whitaker in second place on Viking in 42.17 and Irish rider Denis Lynch came in third in a fast time of 40.91 despite clocking up four faults in the jump off.
With the GCT Grand Prix counting towards Olympic qualifying the pressure was on a big field of top international riders to perform in the €285,000 CSI 5* 1.60m class, which was full of some of the most talented speed riders.
Speaking at the press conference after the prize giving Ben Maher said of his victory on the 10-year-old stallion Tripple X: “He jumped amazingly today. He had the whole of February off ready for the long season ahead. I was in Florida with him recently but we did not have many good results so we rested him and it worked. This result helps towards selection as we have the Olympics coming. I can’t fault him, it was a lot of jumps on the Grand Prix course here and a big course.”
Experienced UK Michael Whitaker said of second place on the podium: “I am very happy, it was very good. Viking is getting better and better. He is not the easiest one but at least he gets it done. That is the main thing.”
Third place rider Denis Lynch said of his round on Abbervail van het Dingeshof: “I am very happy. It was unlucky in the jump off and although I was quicker Ben was the best man on the day.”
(Photo credits: Sportfot/GCT)
Brazil’s Alvaro de Miranda and French rider Penelope LePrevost took fourth and fifth places. Only Ben Maher and Michael Whitaker jumped three clear rounds on the big, challenging courses designed by Frank Rothenberger.
The results of the second leg of the GCT 2012 series mean Edwina Tops-Alexander is still leading the GCT ranking followed by Denis Lynch and Marco Kutscher. Edwina had a fence down in the second round of the Grand Prix on her star horse Cevo Itôt du Chateau, but due to her win at the opening show in Doha, Qatar, last month she is still the rider to beat this season.
Australian-born Edwina, who is the overall 2011 GCT champion, said the changes at the top of the ranking table add a dramatic edge to the championship: “This is top sport and this is what makes it exciting. Denis had a fantastic day today. There is a long way to go, this is only the beginning of season. A lot can change and the best one will win.”
GCT President Jan Tops said: “This location is naturally very beautiful and it is also very horse-friendly with nice big arenas, permanent stables and great facilities. The timekeeping with Longines and the organisation all gets better and better. It was nice to see some different names on the podium and on the ranking which makes it exciting going forward and I am sure everything will come down to the last moment this year.”
Alvaro Arrieta, CEO of local organiser Oxer said: “We were very proud to host the Spanish leg of the GCT in our country. It is our fourth edition and we are very pleased to host the GCT in these new facilities in Oliva Nova. Thanks to our sponsors Banco Sabadell and Longines and I think everyone enjoyed the sport.”
Alvaro said the new venue is a big change from the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia city but added: “I am really happy with the result, it has been a success.”
With another 11 events to go in this year’s Global Champions Tour series, there is everything to play for with the next show taking place in Hamburg, Germany, starting on May 16.
Cassio Rivetti triumphs in first 5* international on the opening day of the Global Champions Tour in Spain.
Ukranian rider Cassio Rivetti clinched victory in the opening CSI 5*competition today despite a fast challenge from current GCT champion Edwina Tops-Alexander.
Cassio rode a deceptively quick round on his 12-year-old bay stallion Böckmanns Lazio finishing in a winning time of 57.19. The stallion’s big stride paid dividends on the course designed by Frank Rothenberger and after the prize giving Cassio said: “He jumped a really good round. He has had some experience here before and I believe that helped as he really liked this speed class.”
World No1 female rider Edwina sped into second place on her consistently high performing mare Mel d’Argences in a time of 57.48 just a fraction behind Cassio. Edwina, the first GCT euro millionaire, had an impressive start to the 2012 GCT series by winning the opening Grand Prix of 2012 in Doha, Qatar, last month.
The great names in show jumping from around the world were out in force for the first 5* international class.
High speed victory for Roger-Yves Bost as the Frenchman praises his “very fast” horse Castle Forbes Vivaldo.
French rider Roger-Yves Bost delighted the crowds with a top speed win and a characteristically big smile as he claimed victory in the GCT CSI 5* International in Spain.
“Bosty” lit up the competition with a stunningly quick round in the 1.50m class setting a time of 60.89 on his bay stallion Castle Forbes Vivaldo van het.
After the prize giving lap of honour Roger-Yves said: “He is a very fast horse and I’m very pleased. We won a lot of classes at 1.50. I’m also pleased because I changed plans and decided to ride him in this class.” It was a repeat of his display of acceleration and daring riding at one of the opening classes at the first GCT of 2012 in Doha, Qatar, last month.
Over 30 top international riders in action for tonight’s Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Spain
Over 30 top international riders will be aiming for the top spot on the podium tonight in the Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Spain with €285,000 prize money at stake and crucial qualifying points for the Olympics.
The Grand Prix Banco Sabadell Trophy will be watched by millions via Eurosport, national television networks and on GCT livestreaming. It is the second Grand Prix of the GCT series so far this year and counts as a qualifier for the Olympic Games in London this summer and for the European Championships in 2013.
Billy Twomey, the winner of last year’s Grand Prix in Valencia, praised the “top class” facilities for the CSI 5* event and the high standards for riders, horses, sponsors and spectators at the GCT shows.
Billy will be riding his chestnut mare Tinka’s Serenade in the Grand Prix and said: “I expect there will be a lot of interest from the public in the Grand Prix here. It is the class everyone wants to watch.
“As a rider in the GCT, of course, you want to keep on form with your ranking and prize money and that is a constant pressure. GCT has raised standards in the sport across the board which is a good thing. I have a very supportive owner who is really knowledgeable about the sport and have been involved with the same owner for 12 years, so I am very lucky to have that behind me.”
Billy, currently in 4th place in the 2012 GCT ranking, is pre-selected for the Olympic as an individual rider along with fellow Irish rider Denis Lynch. He said: “If you are competing at the Olympics you have to consider how many shows you are doing and I am lucky enough to have Tinka’s Serenade, Je t’Aime Flamenco, Romanov and Wings Sublime seems to be jumping very good. I have to keep my form to a decent standard and keep looking forward. And that means planning which horses go to which competitions. I was very happy with 2011 and winning the GCT in Valencia and I am looking forward to the Grand Prix this weekend.”
Edwina Tops-Alexander, No1 on the 2012 GCT rankings so far and also 2011 overall champion, will be aiming to stay on top when she rides her famous gelding Cevo Itôt du Chateau in the Grand Prix later today.
The high stakes competition will be played out on the shores of the Mediterranean at the new venue of the Oliva Nova Equestrian Centre on the southern tip of Valencia province. The world’s best riders spent the morning exercising their Grand Prix horses in anticipation of a hotly-contested class.
Riders from across the globe have travelled to Spain for the latest stage of the world’s premier show jumping circuit. The USA, Canada, Russia, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Brazil, Australia and countries throughout Europe are all represented.
Spain’s Sergio Alvarez Moya wowed the home crowd with a high quality win ahead of the main Grand Prix tonight.
Sergio powered into first place on Kisby in a time of 59.56 winning the CSI5* 1.45m class ahead of a 42-strong field which included over 30 of the world’s top riders. French rider Kevin Staut was second in 60.25 on Le Prestige de Hus after accelerating sharply over the Global Champions Tour vertical during his round. Katharina Offel of the Ukraine came in third on Charlie in 60.73.
Ireland’s Billy Twomey was a fraction of second behind in fourth on 60.74 and fellow Irish rider Mark McAuley was fifth on the powerful horse Par Trois, owned by the young Italian rider Maddalena Valenzano Menada.
Several of the world’s top riders tried to catch the winning time but paid the price for having to take risks.
Speaking after the prize giving ceremony in the arena at the Oliva Nova Equestrian Centre Sergio said: “Kisby is a very fast mare and we made some good tight turns. Because she has so much speed it means I did not have to take as much risk.”
Kisby is owned by Sergio’s wife Marta Ortego Perez who is also competing at the GCT event. Marta and Sergio bought Kisby have owned the chestnut mare for about one year after buying her from Edwina-Tops Alexander.
The Iberian Airlines class featured plenty of high quality young horses, with some of the equine stars of the future among them. The course designed by Frank Rothenberger produced 15 clear rounds but the Iberia Airlines double combination towards the end of proved a challenge for some of the best riders including Michael Whitaker and Alvaro da Miranda.