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Abdel Said closes off with victory in the CSI5* Trophee Casino de Monte-Carlo

Sunday, 25 June 2017
CSI5* LGCT Monaco 2017

Photo (c) LGCT/Stefano Grasso Abdel Said and Hope van Scherpen Donder on their way to victory in Monaco. Photo (c) LGCT/Stefano Grasso.

The final day of the Longines Global Champions Tour of Monaco saw temperatures rise in the Principality, as the world’s best took centre stage once more for the CSI5* Trophee Casino de Monte-Carlo.

As the sun shone down on the unique showjumping location - with the arena nestled between superyachts and the Formula 1 pitlane - it was Egypt’s Abdel Said (EGY) who reigned supreme after a blistering win in a six-rider jump-off with his 10-year-old mare Hope van Scherpen Donder (Quadrillo x Balou du Rouet). An ecstatic Abdel talked about the significance of winning against a world-class field: “I’m delighted with Hope, she stepped up her game. It’s a fantastic show here at the LGCT Monaco, all the best riders are here and I’m delighted with the win today.”

Talking about his mare, Abdel said: “The way she tried today... Wherever we finished I would have been happy! She’s very special in many ways, I leave her the way she is, I believe in her and she always wins the class for me when it counts.”

Luc Musette’s course was a flowing, twisty design, making full use of the 70m long by 20m wide sand arena. Notable elements were the triple combination along the side of the road, delicate double of verticals while would roll with the lightest of touches.

The first riders to enter the ring set the pace, lulling the crowd into a false sense of security as Kevin Staut (FRA) with Ayade de Septon et HDC (Wandor van de Mispelaere x Belle d'Avril du Mazy), Jack Hardin Towell (USA) with Emilie de Diamant A S (Diamant de Semilly x Flipper d'Elle) and Yuri Mansur Guerios (BRA) with Unita Ask (Corrado I x Caretino) all jumped clear with ease. Just as it was looking as though there might be a massive multi-rider jump-off, faults began to collect as all around the arena poles tumbled.

Abdel Saïd (EGY) with Hope van Scherpen Donder, and Denis Lynch (IRL) with RMF Bella Baloubet (Baloubet du Rouet x Landadel) were the next to jump clear, before world number one Kent Farrington (USA) and Creedance (Lord Z x Notaris) and Leopold van Asten (NED) with VDL Groep Miss Untouchable (Chacco-Blue x Aldatus) ramped up the numbers to make it a six rider jump-off.

First to return to the ring was Jack Hardin Towell who unleashed the power in Emilie de Diamant A S, making a fantastic turn and pushing to the last to finish in 35.71s. It was a sensible and positive round, but the door was left slightly ajar, with five big names yet to come.

Kevin Staut blazed around the course, with his chestnut flying around the arena after a phenomenal leap out of the starting blocks. The pair finished a full two seconds quicker than Hardin, stopping the clock in 33.52s.

Yuri took one less stride and a flier to the penultimate oxer, but finished just shy of Kevin’s time to finish in 34.22s with Unita Ask, despite making up time at the end. Denis Lynch gave it his all with the big striding RMF Bella Baloubet, but the pair couldn’t better the Frenchman’s time and had a pole down while pushing to shave off valuable milliseconds.

Abdel Said and Hope van Scherpen Donder set off at a pace more suited to the Formula 1 circuit, with the pair blistering around the arena and making pin point turns back to the 1.50m verticals. The crowd roared as they crossed the line in 32.68s, almost a second faster than Staut’s time.

Kent Farrington and Creedance looked a formidable pairing, but the chestnut jinked and bucked towards the Longines oxer, losing valuable milliseconds and meaning the pair would finish just behind Abdel with a time of 33.37s.

The final rider to go was Leopold van Asten who put in some brave tries with some incredible turns and VDL Miss Untouchable leaping over the imposing fences. But it wasn’t enough, and the paid stopped the clock in 33.79s, finishing in fourth overall.

So it was Abdel who took the win and the lion’s share of the €92,000 prize purse, with Kent in second and Kevin rounding out the top three in the final CSI5* class of the weekend. 

 


Source: Press release from LGCT // Picture © Stefano Grasso/LGCT

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