Jumping: Keeping an eye on the up-and-comers
Things were a bit calmer this morning after the crowds from yesterday: all that could be heard in today’s empty stands were toppling poles. Faults abounded in the 1.40m speed competition, with many competitors coming unstuck over Frédéric Cottier’s tricky course. The quiet, low-key atmosphere of the stadium was perfect for Bertram Allen, who made his third consecutive podium finish.
The Irish rider was lightning fast today, rounding out two days of solid performances (he claimed second place with Wrangler II in the first class of the test events and third in yesterday afternoon's Grand Prix with Wild Thing L). He clearly had his sights set high, and quickly took the lead with a time of 57’71. Despite several clear rounds, no one even came close to worrying him. The first real danger appeared about halfway through the competition, when Pénélope Leprevost came out on her light-footed and energetic Sultane des Ibis. But her clear round didn’t quite cut it. Final time: 61’59.
Patrice Delaveau and Quenndal de Lojou*HDC pulled out all the stops, making risky decisions and short turns in a bid to beat Allen’s time. It was a thrilling round, but the Frenchman also proved too slow, coming in more than a second behind the young Irishman (59’44). Victory eluded the winning pair from yesterday morning’s event, Filippo Moyersoen on Loro Piana Bricchina Bella, after they notched up a fault on a vertical. Felton du Mont, sired by Clinton and ridden by Belgian rider Dirk Demeersman, was in good form today. The pair clocked a final time of 59’96 to earn a third-place spot. The second-to-last rider, Mexico’s Alberto Michan Halbinger with mount Colombina LS, missed out on the podium by a hair. Unfortunately, Halbinger suffered a fault on the last obstacle of his respectable 59’75 round.
In the end, the podium was a very international one, with three nations represented: Ireland, France and Belgium. A sneak peak of the Games, perhaps? Bertram Allen will have the chance to come back in August, having officially made the Irish Federation’s shortlist for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian GamesTM 2014 in Normandy. Stay tuned to see how it all turns out from 2 September…
- Bertram Allen & Wild Thing L – 57’71
- Patrice Delaveau & Quenndal de Lojou*HDC – 59’44
- Dirk Demeersman & Felton du Mont – 59’96