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London Knights storm to second GCL-win in Spanish showdown

Sunday, 06 May 2018
CSI5* LGCT Madrid 2018

Photo (c) Stefano Grasso/GCL The winning duo of Ben Maher and Nicola Philippaerts. Photo (c) Stefano Grasso/GCL.

The London Knights brought home a second win of the season, after a spectacular Spanish showdown saw thrills, spills and top sporting action at the Global Champions League of Madrid on Saturday. Ben Maher and Nicola Philippaerts of the London Knights withstood the pressure to ride the only double clear of the day, stealing the win from the Shanghai Swans and securing their place at the top of the overall rankings. 

With a second consecutive win in the bag, the Knights have furthered their lead in the GCL-race with 92 points overall - their sights firmly fixed on the GC Prague Play Offs at the end of the year, and a place in the GCL Super Cup. Valkenswaard United remain second in the overall rankings, currently on 76 points, and Berlin Eagles lie in third with a points tally of 65. 

The Knights played a strategic game in Madrid, fielding U25 star Emily Moffitt on the first round of competition, and bringing in Nicola Philippaerts for the second round. Second went to Laura Kraut and Abdel Said of the Rome Gladiators, and third to Daniel Deusser and Pedro Veniss of the Shanghai Swans, the duo toppling from pole position in an edge-of-the-seat final round. 

"It is a great start but it is still early days. We have a really good team spirit. We are always talking on the phone before the show, really working together, having a long debate. We are very happy with the position right now but there is a long way to go. We need good horses for the team. Shanghai was my first show on him (Explosion) and it went very well and has continued. It seems nothing fazes him but he will have a well-earned rest now. He is just a horse that just drops in and looks for the next jump and it is something I have not experienced many times," said Maher. 

Maher's team-mate Nicola Philippaerts added: "We jumped well and will hopefully for the rest of the season. If you see the Global Tour the shows are amazing. Madrid is a fantastic show, so many people, it is really top sport here. As it is a team competition it is different so it is important to give your best in the ring."

Source: Press release from GCL // Photo © Stefano Grasso/GCL

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