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The Master of the Faster on top in Valkenswaard

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Richard Spooner and Billy Bianca en route to victory in Valkenswaard. Photo by Jenny Abrahamsson.The American success continued in Valkenswaard today, as Richard Spooner and Billy Bianca (Vechta x Iroco) won the 1.45-1.50 speed class. Spooner entered the ring towards the end of the class, and in normal style he set off with a high speed on the fast chestnut mare – tightening all the turns around the twelve fence track to shave off 0.3 seconds on current leader Gregory Wathelet’s time. Spooner and Billy Bianca crossed the finish line on 58.62 seconds, a time that looked almost impossible to beat for the remaining six riders – which it in the end proved to be. Spooner’s win followed McLain Ward and Lauren Hough’s victories yesterday; the Americans have dominated the five star classes in Valkeswaard so far, and the question is if they can keep it up in the GCT Grand Prix today.

Runner-up Gregory Wathelet on Kronos d'Ouilly. Photo by Jenny Abrahamsson.Gregory Wathelet on Kronos d’Ouilly (Uzelien x Graphit) took an early lead in the class, and for a long time it looked like they would take home the win. The closest threat before Richard entered the grass arena was Christian Ahlmann on Aragon (Askari x Kolibri) who blazed around the track to finish on 60.76 – eventually leaving them in third place. Yesterday’s winner Lauren Hough and Ohlala (Orlando x Cardento) rode another great clear round, but the time was not fast enough for the top three placings today and they ended sixth.

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