After two extremely exciting rounds, it was decided; Eric Lamaze and Hickstead, Phillippe Le Jeune and Vigo d’Arsouilles, Rodrigo Pessoa and HH Rebozo and Abdullah Al Sharbatly and Seldana di Campalto are in the Top Four!
It was 12.5 faults that separated the first rider – Norway’s Geir Gulliksen – and the last and leading rider – Rodrigo Pessoa, when today’s semi-final started. After the first round, a lot of things had changed. The triple combination – at the end of the course - caused a lot of trouble for many of the riders, including Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and Checkmate (Contender x Pik Bube II) who withdrew after being unable to clear the last element of the triple combination. Alvaro Miranda, Kevin Staut, Billy Twomey, Khaled Al Eid, John Pearce, Carsten-Otto Nagel and even Rodrigo Pessoa were among the other riders to fault here as well.
Five riders rode clear rounds; McLain Ward restored his pride when he and the Darco-mare Sapphire were the first to remain clear. Abdullah Al Sharbatly and Seldana di Campalto (Emillion x Alme Star) were the next to finish on clean sheet. Rolf-Göran Bengtsson on the Guidam-son Ninja la Silla made it all look easy, and rode yet another fantastic clear round. Eric Lamaze had a convincing clear round on his Olympic gold-winner Hickstead (Hamlet x Eikstein), while Phillippe Le Jeune and Vigo d’Arsouilles (Nabab de Reve x Fleuri de Manoir) rode close to perfection on yet another zero score. When Rodrigo Pessoa and HH Rebozo (Tlaloc la Silla x Ramiro Z) had the second element of the triple combination down, the second round was to become a thriller.
With Le Jeune on a 3.11 score, Lamaze on 3.39 and Bengtsson on 5.37 it was all so close.
The main arena was lit up by flood lights when the second round started. This created a totally different atmosphere for both horses and riders. The course now consisted of 10 fences including a triple combination at 3a, b and c.
It was a lot more clear rounds this time around, with thirteen riders completing on a zero score and three riders on only one time-fault. When Carsten-Otto Nagel and Corradina (Corrado I x Sandro) were clear, the pressure was on and there was no room for error. Abdullah Al Sharbatly and Seldana di Campalto didn’t break under pressure though and had another good clear round, and must be extremely happy with what they have accomplished. Rodrigo Pessoa and HH Rebozo managed to ride clear, and put even more pressure on the remaining three riders. Rolf-Göran Bengtsson and Ninja la Silla were extremely unlucky when they had a fence down, and ended up on a total score of 9.37. Eric Lamaze rode fantastic on Hickstead, and cleared the finish line on a zero score. It sure will be interesting to see the other three riders on this special horse tomorrow. Phillippe Le Jeune and Vigo d’Arsouilles stayed calm, and rode yet another beautiful round ending up on just one time fault and securing a place in the final. What a horse and rider!!
We will be back with more news tomorrow!
For full results go to http://www.alltechfeigames.com/
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