Hans-Dieter Dreher and Embassy II could celebrate victory on home soil in the Longines FEI World Cup in Leipzig on Sunday afternoon. As last to go in a five horse jump-off, the popular Hansi left Geir Gulliksen behind him in second and Luca Moneta in third.
The first round of the competition was very technical. The triple combination consisting of a triple bar, an oxer and a vertical placed away from the entrance caused the most problems. For the rest the faults were spread all over the course and the last fence - which was very airy with only three poles stopped David Will from moving on to the jump-off after a beautiful round. For others the vertical at fence three caused heart ache, and quite a few experienced their horses refusing here. Only five of the 40 rider and horse combinations cleared the course and went on to the jump-off.
Luca Maria Moneta and Connery (Cordobes II x Polydor) were first to go. The Italian rider did a great clear round in 38,40 seconds, but was quite steady around the shortened track and the time looked very possible to beat. Geir Gulliksen followed with Edesa S Banjan (Toulon x Lys de Darmen), and with a bit tighter turns everywhere the Norwegian rider took over the lead with a time of 37,72 seconds. Gulliksen's time put pressure on those to come, and the two following riders - Felix Hassmann on Horse Gym's Balzaci (Balou du Rouet x Landadel) and Douglas Lindelöw with Casello (Casall x Carolus) both had two see two fences fall to the ground as they chased the leading time. In the end Felix ended fourth and Douglas fifth.
Last to go in the jump-off was Hansi and Embassy II (Escudo I x Silvio I). Always fast, Geir was in the danger zone from the beginning and with short turns and full speed the pair pushed his time down to an incredible 36,07 seconds to take the win in the Longines FEI World Cup to standing ovation from the home crowds.
Kevin Staut on Reveur de Hurtebise HDC (Kashmir van Schuttershof x Capricieux Des Six Cences) was the fastest of the four faulters and ended sixth while Patrice Delavaeau with Lacrimoso HDC (Landjunge x Cascavelle) took the seventh place.
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