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William Whitaker wins the Queen’s Cup in Barcelona

Saturday, 30 September 2017
CSIO5* Barcelona 2017

Photo (c) Nanna Nieminen for World of Showjumping William Whitaker and Fandango won the Queen's Cup in Barcelona. Photo (c) Nanna Nieminen for World of Showjumping.

The Queen’s Cup Segura Viudas Trophy was Saturday afternoon’s first class in Barcelona ahead of the Longines FEI Nations Cup Final, and saw William Whitaker (GBR) and Fandango (Last Liberty x Krocket 651) on top.

The 1.50m class with a jump-off had 60 riders in it, and 21 of them managed to go clear – turning the jump-off into a real race.

Steve Guerdat (SUI) on the 11-year-old mare Cayetana (Robin II Z x Papillon Rouge) set the time to beat to 38,63 seconds and held on to his lead for a good while, until Henrik von Eckermann (SWE) on the 10-year-old gelding Chacanno (Chacco Blue x Kannan) entered the ring, shaving off nearly a second of Guerdat’s time stopping the clock at 37,41 seconds.

Tiffany Foster (CAN) on the 11-year-old Brighton (Contendro x Quick Star) offered the audience a real treat, choosing an alternative route to the penultimate oxer by jumping over a bush of flowers that created a corner between the fences. Racing towards the last vertical, the pair clocked a time of 37,27 seconds – and left the remaining riders scratching their heads; to jump the flower decorations or not

William Whitaker on the 14-year-old gelding Fandango took the chance and managed to snatch the lead with a time of 36,58 seconds. Last to go, Pieter Devos (BEL) on the 9-year-old mare Claire Z (Clearway x Coronado) chose the same route and stopped the clock at 37,20 seconds – taking over the runner-up position pushing Foster to third, Von Eckermann to fourth and Guerdat to fifth.

“I am absolutely delighted with my horse Fandango,” William Whitaker told World of Showjumping after the class. “When I walked the course I actually thought it was tough and the time was tight enough. But that just kind of shows the quality of horses and riders that are here in Barcelona,” he explained. “With 21 clears I knew it would get fast –  I was lucky that I had a late draw, that helped me a lot. With that funny little jump over the bush – I did not think about it but Michael (Whitaker) came to me before Tiffany (Foster) had done it and asked if I had thought about it. Not that I was too keen on the idea of doing that… but anyway, I was lucky to see Tiffany get away with it so I knew I had to do it if I wanted to win,” Whitaker smiled.

“Fandango has been a great horse for me, he is 14 now so he is very experienced, which helps in jump-offs like this. Some of my best wins have been on him. He jumped two really good rounds today and he feels on good form again,” William said about his horse, which is owned by his wife and her parents.

 


Text and picture © World of Showjumping by Nanna Nieminen

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