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Steve Guerdat and Victorio des Frotards win the CSI5* Grand Prix at Hubside Jumping Grimaud

Monday, 27 September 2021
CSI5* Hubside Jumping Grimaud 2021

Photo © Sportfot. Steve Guerdat and Victorio des Frotards. Photo © Sportfot.


Edited press release from Hubside Jumping



Steve Guerdat 1st, Peder Fredricson 2nd, Simon Delestre 3rd, it would be difficult to dream of a better podium to bring the second week of the Hubside Fall Tour to a conclusion. Aboard the 12-year-old gelding Victorio des Frotards (Barbarian x Prince Ig'Or), the Swiss rider gave his opponents no chance, taking the win in the CSI5* 1.60 m Hubside Jumping Grimaud Grand Prix after an incredible jump-off. 

It was a course of 13 obstacles and 16 jumping efforts that waited for the 42 riders on the start list on Sunday afternoon – which included five out of the world's Top 10. As soon as the course was open, Germany’s Daniel Deusser shared his feelings: "The course includes several difficulties, what the course designer proposes is quite tricky, in particular the final combination (a double vertical-oxer) which is going to cause a lot of faults. The time allowed will also play against us, we need to be fast but not lose precision.” That turned out to be an understatement.

From the very first to go, this last line – the double at n°12 followed by a final vertical six strides later –proved to be the real test, depriving France’s Alexa Ferrer, Philippe Rozier, Kevin Staut, Jeanne Sadran, Grégory Cottard, Sweden’s Angelica Augustsson Zanotelli and Italy’s Piergiorgio Bucci of a place in the jump-off.

France's Bruno Garez was the first to find the answers to jumping the course, as n°11 to enter the arena. Accompanied by United Sunheup (Balougran x Brett Saint Clair), he left the ring without a single pole down but with one time fault. It wasn’t until the 18th to go that the first clear round was seen in this Grand Prix, and it came from world n°1 Daniel Deusser and Casallvano (Casall x Gestion Silvano N). Deusser was quickly joined by Colombia’s Carlos Lopez, Italy’s Emanuele Camilli, France’s Simon Delestre, the Swedish Olympic champion Peder Fredricson, Switzerland’s Steve Guerdat as well as the Americans Laura Kraut and Spencer Smith and finally Ireland's Billy Towmey.

First to go in the jump-off, Daniel Deusser immediately put the pressure on his fellow competitors with a perfect and very fast round in 44.48 seconds. It wasn’t enough to impress the 5* riders who followed, starting with the American Laura Kraut and Confu (Contact Me x Cambridge) who went faster by more than a second. Always a great performer at top level, the 16-year-old Chesall Zimequest (Casall x Concerto II), ridden by Simon Delestre, repeated the feat allowing his rider to take the lead in 42.94 seconds. But this was without taking into account the two big names who were to follow. First Peder Fredricson, team gold medallist in Tokyo, this time riding H&M Christian K (Namelus R x Calvados), finished his round in 40.42, then Steve Guerdat, who, by crossing the line and stopping the clock at 40.28, stole victory by 14 hundredths of a second from under the nose of his Swedish opponent.

"I’m delighted, he always jumps well here in Grimaud but often has a faults so I was looking forward to my luck changing and that was the case today," said the winner after the prize giving. “I’ve already won here with Victorio and to do it again is always pleasurable. In the jump-off he can be very fast but when I saw Peder's time I hesitated about trying everything because he leaves next week for Barcelona and I didn't really want to take too many risks. In the end, once I was in the arena I didn't ask too many questions, I kept going and told myself that if it went well so much the better, if it didn't it didn't matter, I’d nothing to lose. The course caused a lot of faults as we saw in the first part of the class. One of the difficulties here at Grimaud is that the obstacles are relatively light so the horses easily leave a hind leg behind. However, they don't jump badly, but faults happen more quickly here than elsewhere. The layouts are always very interesting, we can ride 8 year olds to help them progress, as well as more experienced horses without taking too much out of them to win, this is a credit to the course designer. This performance with Victorio gives me confidence for next week when we head to Spain for the Nations Cup Final.”

It can’t be said that he hadn’t warned his fellow competitors of his great form. A few hours earlier, the multi-medalist had won the 1.45m CSI2* Grand Prix. With the experienced Ulysse des Forets (Col Canto x Le Tot de Semilly), Guerdat was one of the 12 couples to qualify for the jump-off by completing a perfect round. Then 39.32 was the time it took Steve Guerdat to finish his jump-off and take the lead. “Ulysse just did a small class on Friday so she’s in great shape," explained the former world number one. “She jumped well in the first round and having quite a lot of blood the jump-off wasn’t a problem for her. She’s a very experienced mare, she’s already won at the highest level.”  The rest of the podium was 100% French with Guillaume Roland Billecart and Ustica des Luthiers (Kashmir Van Schuttershof x Bleu Blanc Rouge II) in 39.95 seconds, followed by Fanny Skalli, who was victorious last week in the same class with her fantastic Jonka-A (Cardento 933 x Chin Chin).

After two intense weeks, the doors of the Hubside Jumping Grimaud - Golfe de St Tropez have closed. But not for long, because on the 7th of October, the best show jumpers in the world will meet again for the second part of the Hubside Fall Tour in the heart of the French Riviera. The President and Founder of Hubside Jumping, Sadri Fegaier, and his team, have scheduled a CSI4* from the 7th to the 10th of October and, again, a CSI5* from the 14th to the 17th of October. 


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