McLain Ward and Rotchild (Artos Z) won the biggest class of the day at the Global Champions Tour in Valkenswaard. The 1.50 speed class had 47 riders lined up to compete, and out of these nine went clear over the twelve fence track that included three combinations, whereas the penultimate combination caused most problems. The first to go clear was Ireland’s Mark McAuley on Loriot (Lavelle), with the time of 68.50 – eventually good enough for fifth. Both Rodrigo Pessoa on HH Ashley (Acorado x Chasseur) and Katharina Offel on Fidji Island (For Feeling x Wanderer) came close though, but slotted in right behind McAuley.
Then it was time for Beezie Madden on Simon (Mr. Blue x Polydox). The American rider shaved off 0.11 seconds on Mark’s time, and went in to the lead after a lovely round on the 13 year old KWPN-gelding. Edwina Tops-Alexander also performed great on home soil, and rode a clear round on Guccio (Quick Star x Cantus) – but she was slower than those before her. As was Marco Kutsher on Cornet Obolensky (Clinton x Heartbreaker) – who looked to be back to his great normal self – eventually ending eight ahead of the Australian rider.
Jessica Springsteen was the next to produce a clear; and in style! The American rider rode a lovely round on Temmie – a 12 year old gelding by Matterhorn – and it definitely was a smooth ride that didn’t look as fast as it rode, taking Jessica to the lead on a time of 67.86. It was not to last though, as next to go Gregory Wathelet cut the time down to 67.49 on Banda de Hus (Argentinus x Lefevre).
Two riders later another fast American rider entered the ring; McLain Ward. On the 11 year old Rotchild he set of determinedly, but again this was a lovely round with high speed, tight turns and accurate riding which took Ward to the lead and eventually the win on the amazing time of 64. 26!
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