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Julien Anquetin and Blood Diamond du Pont win the Hermès Grand Prix in Paris

Sunday, 17 March 2024
CSI5* Saut Hermès 2024

Photo © Christophe Tanière. Julien Anquetin and Blood Diamond du Pont, winners of the Hermès Grand Prix in Paris. Photo © Christophe Tanière.

The fourteenth edition of the Saut Hermès in the heart of the French capital concluded on Sunday with the CSI5* 1.60m Grand Prix Hermès, with the host nation's own Julien Anquetin taking the top honours with the 13-year-old gelding Blood Diamond du Pont (Diamant de Semilly x Arpege Pierreville) after an exciting nine-horse jump-off. 

With a time of 34.64, Anquetin took the win ahead of his compatriot Julien Epaillard and Donatello d'Auge (Jarnac x Hello Pierville) who had to settle for the runner-up spot when the clock stopped on 34.92 for the current world number four. 

“It’s the finest victory of my career," Anquetin said in a press release from Saut Hermès. "I’m on cloud nine. I’m struggling to get my head round it. I’ve already won a CSI5* Grand Prix, but winning here in France is unbelievable. In the jump-off, I think my rollback was the finest of my entire career. I was happy when Julien Épaillard also qualified for the jump-off as I was very motivated by the idea of pitting myself against the fastest rider in the world. I said to myself that we would be able to have some fun! It was a great challenge. I knew I’d been quick in the jump-off but it was very stressful to watch the others. My horse has been incredible once again. This horse competed in his first international competitions with me. This victory is quite an accomplishment.”

“I’m honestly very happy for Julien and I’m delighted to be where I am," second placed Epaillard said in a press release from Saut Hermès. "I’ve had a slightly unlucky weekend with four penalty points on three occasions, so it’s a nice end to the competition this way. In the jump-off, I tried to save some time at the start but my rollback was not exceptional. At the last fence, I may well have lacked a little boldness too, I wasn’t daring enough to try it with one less stride. There’s no use going back over it though; Julien was the best today. And it’s great to see that there are some youngsters pushing us along.” 

Rene Lopez Lizarazo (COL) and Kheros van'T Hoogeinde (Echo van'T Spieveld x Darco) placed third in 35.96, while Kendra Claricia Brinkop (GER) and Tabasco de Toxandria Z (Thunder v. Zuuthoeve x Cento Lano) finished fourth in 36.66 and Gilles Thomas (BEL) aboard Luna van'T Dennehof (Prince van de Wolfsakker x Quidam de Revel) fifth in 37.98. 


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