The 19 year old Hello Max (Hallo x I'm A Star) made it all look so easy when he and Gilbert Tillmann won the prestigious Hamburg Derby today. The veteran and his German rider really fought their way through the difficult derby course in front of the home crowds. No riders managed to be clear around the seventeen fence long track, and only two of the 35 riders ended with four faults - Gilbert Tillmann and Carsten-Otto Nagel on Lex Lugar (Lordanos x Landadel). Both of them were prevented from clear rounds by the open water - Lex Lugar got a foot in the water in the landing while Hello Max also had a hoof in. With four faults for each of the Geman riders, it was a jump-off for the victory.
Nagel was first to go in the jump-off, and with one down it was all up to Tillmann. As also Gilbert got one fence down in the middle of the course, he let the fresh Hello Max gallop a bit more and ended the track almost exactly one second faster than Carsten-Otto - taking the win and joining the history books.
As always, the Derby brought out a lot of emontions for the riders. This might be the only class where the riders feel like winners as long as they finish the course - no matter with how many faults. The Derby is also a class full of surprises - the riders that were the best in the two qualifications got problems today; neither Emanuele Gaudiano on Chicago (Chambertin x Quinar), Marcus Ehning with Campel (Contendro x Argentan) nor Karl Brocks on Plinton (Clinton x Papillon Rouge) got down the derby bank today, while Jur Vrieling and Labors Wonderboy (Indoctro x Burggraaf) also got eliminated. It kind of says it all when Pius Schwizer and Ulysse ended with 12 faults to still fnish 7th.
Three riders had eight faults; German rider Hilmar Meyer on Coverlady (Convoi x Wellenspiel) was the fastest among them to end third ahead of Britain's William Whitaker with Glenavadra Brilliant (Brilliant Lad x Powerswood Purple) and Ronni Healy with Carlow Cruiser (Cruising x Duca di Busted).
You can click here to take a look at the course plan and all the elements involved in the difficult derby course.
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