It was Laura Kraut and the 12 year old KWPN-stallion U-Prova (Lorentin I x Corofino) that took home the Grand Prix at the Longines Beijing Equestrian Masters. The biggest class of the show counted 35 riders – the majority were Chinese – and in total nine riders were clear over the first round 11 fence track that concluded with a triple combination that consisted of a vertical-oxer-vertical. Due to the quarantine rules in China, the riders from Europe and the US all competed on borrowed horses – but that did not prevent four of them from joining the jump-off.
Germany was well represented; with Ludger Beerbaum, Christian Ahlmann and Marco Kutscher going clear and moving on to ride against the clock. They were joined by Laura who was the only American competitor in the class. Kenneth Cheng from Hong Kong opened the jump-off, but unfortunately had the final vertical down – before home rider Zhu Mei Mei rode an accurate and clear round on Cheval de Blanc (Cambridge x Corofino I). Duan Yihua had the a-element of the combination down, as did Ludger who had partnered up with Lilliom 2 (Landsieger x Lakai).
Then it was time for Laura and U-Prova. The American rider really had to work around the shortened track, and the stallion was not the easiest to turn. Under Laura’s determined guidance U-Prova stayed clear tough and crossed the finish line on 37.46 seconds. It looked like Christian Ahlmann had the chance beat the time aboard the Zangersheide-gelding Cinetto (Canabis Z x Nimmerdor), but surprisingly he had to settle for second 1.51 seconds behind. Tongyan Liu had the penultimate oxer down, and unfortunately for yesterday’s winner Marco he got in trouble in his turn to the a-element of the combination and pulled up before he continued. Last to go was home rider Xiaokelatiabayi, who did a faboulous round in the Bird’s Nest aboard Ukendy (Cavalier x Amethist) to finish third.
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