The top four riders met the press after their brilliant performances in the ring today.
Patrice started off the press conference talking about his day and the pressure to ride on home soil; “I am of course very happy after a difficult day with all the expectations. I live about 40 kilometers away, so I know many people in the area. We have discussed this competition every day for a long time so the pressure was huge for me and the French riders."
On the question about his nerves tomorrow compared to today Patrice said; “Tomorrow is another day. I will enjoy tonight and then we will see tomorrow.”
Beezie explained about the pressure going in to the ring today; “It was definitely an exciting day. Even though my horse had one down in the first round, he jumped great. He warmed up well for the second round so I had confidence in him - it was a matter of me. I was so excited to get into the final four.”
Beezie is the only one of the four riders who have competed in the top four final before and was asked whether she thought her experience would be an advantage in the final. “Maybe a little, but unfortunately they are all different horses... It’s pretty equal I would say. “
Rolf-Göran looked very proud and relieved when he realized he had made it. “Of course you are super happy when you are sitting here, and I am really looking forward to tomorrow. I got an early fault and I knew there was room for no more, so it was exciting for me to see the finish line.“
On a question about the pressure that came with his fault Rolf answered; “Of course when you get that fault - and the fault was not just a little touch it was a proper fault, I can not explain why he took off so funny. It was a lot of things going on in my head on my way home - like is he going to do that on the next oxer? But he was really with me and I am very happy to sit here now.”
Jeroen was asked if he had any of the pressure moments like Rolf's or if Thursday’s gold medal made him just enjoy the ride; “I did not feel any pressure today at all. No, I am just kidding. I was in 12th position so last night I thought that the only thing I can do is ride a double clear and wait for faults from others. That is maybe not a nice thing to think, but I did it today.”
Jeroen was asked about how he felt that his horse Zenith Sfn (Rash R x Fuego du Prelet) - the youngest and most inexperienced horse among the top four - made all the way.; ”It was a surprise for me, he is really inexperienced and it is his first year jumping on this level. He started this winter doing some Grand Prix classes on three- and four-star level, and he started doing the five star shows this summer. He has shown that he is really cool and not very complicated. He is very fit and maybe it is an advantage for the other riders that he did not do so much as the other horses.“
Course designer Frédéric Cottier on the finalist and today’s courses; “I want to start by saying that the four riders we have here are not here by chance. We have four extraordinary riders and champions. To go from 160 pairs to these four, proves that the sport spoke today. I designed today’s course in the same spirit I always work. I want it to be comfortable for the horses and hard for the riders. The respect for the horses come first. For tomorrow the drawing will have an impact and maybe the fatigue of the horses so there will be an addition of different details that the riders will have to handle. There are certain rules I have to follow for tomorrow’s class so I will not invent anything new. But tomorrow again the pressure will play an important role.”
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