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World number one Kent Farrington shines bright at CHI Geneva

Friday, 08 December 2017
CHI Geneva 2017

Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.
Kent Farrington with Voyeur. Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.

Friday’s highlight at CHI Geneva was the Credit Suisse Grand Prix, where world number one Kent Farrington (USA) went off with the top honours after a marathon jump-off. 

The 1.55m course set by Gérard Lachat (SUI) and Louis Konickx (NED) saw no less than 22 horse-and-rider combinations out of the 50 pairs that lined up clear their way into the jump-off, that as predicted turned out to become a real race against the clock. 

Daniel Bluman (ISR) on the 14-year-old mare Sancha LS (Chin Chin x Polydor) held on to the lead for a good while after clocking a time of 37,06 seconds in the jump-off. However, Bluman had to settle for runner-up position when the current number one on the Longines Ranking, Kent Farrington, showed once more just why is the top ranked rider in the world. Riding the 15-year-old Voyeur (Tolano van’t Riethof x Goodwill), Farrington stopped the clocks at 36,42 seconds in the jump-off, taking home the win – for the third time in a row in this class. 

“I am very happy with my horse today, he is a very experienced horse and has been to this show many times,” Kent said about Voyeur after the class. “I think that really helped me win today – that I know him so well. I know his strengths and what extra things he can do, but also where not to push him,” he went on. 

“I think that is great about our sport; forming a partnership with your horse and really knowing each other and that is what makes a top team. I think this class, if you look historically, there are always many in the jump-off,” the American number commented on the high number of clears on the first round. “It is hard for the course designer to build, because you are trying to separate the riders without building too much. I think it also shows how strong the competition here is with these horses and riders.” 

Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.
Daniel Bluman with Sancha LS. Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.

Second placed Bluman was delighted with his horse. “I had to go a little bit early on in the order, and when you are at the Rolex Grand Slam of Geneva, it is not just any show – the best riders in the world are here. I did give my all, I thought I had maybe done enough, but Kent is not the number one in the world for nothing!” Bluman said. “Kent is one of the best competitors I know and a good friend, I knew the class was not over until he jumped.” Talking about his faithful horse, Bluman said: “Sancha has done everything for me, she started my professional career. She had an injury and was out for one year and I am so happy to have her back – the mare has a heart of gold.”

Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.
Harrie Smolders with Zinius. Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.

The winning pair from the opening day, Harrie Smolders (NED) on the 13-year-old gelding Zinius (Nabab de Reve x Kannan), continued their great form by picking up the third place with a time of 37,08 seconds, while Niels Bruynseels (BEL) on the 11-year-old mare Cas de Liberté Z (Cracky Z x Chellano Z) placed fourth with a time of 38,52 seconds. To the joy of the Swiss crowds, their home hero Steve Guerdat (SUI) on the 11-year-old mare Bianca (Balou du Rouet x Cardento) took the fifth spot after stopping the clocks on 38,65 seconds in the jump-off.


Text and pictures © World of Showjumping

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