World of Showjumping
World of ShowjumpingWorld of Showjumping

Marlon Modolo Zanotelli and VDL Edgar M save the best for last in the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ of Bordeaux

Sunday, 05 February 2023
CSI5*-W Jumping International de Bordeaux 2023

Photo © Artistes Associés Brazil’s Marlon Modolo Zanotelli and VDL Edgar M saved the best for last in the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ of Bordeaux. Photo © Artistes Associés.


Text © World of Showjumping



Brazil’s Marlon Modolo Zanotelli and VDL Edgar M saved the best for last in the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ of Bordeaux, where the Western European League made a stop for its 13th – and penultimate – leg of the 2022/2023-season last night.

Celebrating 50 years of emotions and top sport, the 2023-edition of Jumping International de Bordeaux lived up to all expectations, with an ecstatic crowd cheering the horses and riders on each stride of their way. The first-round track set by Jean-Francois Morand counted 14 obstacles and 16 efforts. With the time allowed set to 84 seconds, the course started easy with a Freejump oxer followed by a vertical on fence two and a triple bar as fence three, with six strides to a Lambey-oxer. After, the questions were asked in succession; a grey plank at fence number five, with four open strides to a liverpool oxer, followed by seven strides to a purple wall at fence seven – where the first pair out, Maikel van der Vleuten (NED) and Dywis HH (Toulon x Corofino II) ran into double, resulting in those to come paying extra attention. As all the distances were slightly open, halfway through the class eight pairs had already jumped clear – each of them well within the time allowed.

Gregory Cottard (FRA) and Bibici (Norma Pre Noir x Nelfo du Mesnil) posted the first clear round of the night, and were followed by Daniel Deusser (GER) and Scuderia 1918 Tobago Z (Otangelo x Mr Blue), Denis Lynch (IRL) and Brooklyn Heights (Nabab de Reve x For Pleasure), Marcus Ehning (GER) and Stargold (Stakkato Gold x Lord Weingard), Pieter Devos (BEL) and MoM’s Toupie de la Roque (Kannan x Nabab de Reve), Simon Delestre (FRA) and Cayman Jolly Jumper (Hickstead x Quaprice Bois Margot) and Scott Brash aboard Hello Jefferson (Cooper van de Heffinck x Irco Mena).

Photo © Artistes Associés Marlon Modolo Zanotelli and VDL Edgar M, winners of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ of Bordeaux. Photo © Artistes Associés.

In the end, a total of seventeen horse-and-rider-combinations jumped clear, when Edouard Schmitz (SUI) and Quno (Quo Vados I x Cashandcarry), Gerrit Nieberg (GER) and Blues d’Aveline CH (Baloussini x Coriall), Max Kühner (AUT) and Elektric Blue P (Eldorado vd Zeshoek x For Pleasure), Jur Vrieling (NED) and Long John Silver 3 N.O.P. (Lasino x San Patrignano Corrado), Henrik von Eckermann (SWE) and King Edward (Edward x Feo), Penelope Leprevost (FRA) and Bingo del Tondou (Vigo d’Arsouilles x Querlybet Hero), Olivier Perreau (FRA) and GL Events Dorai d’Aiguilly (Kannan x Toulon), Harry Charles (GBR) and Balou du Reventon (Cornet Obolensky x Continue), Eduardo Alvarez Aznar (ESP) and Bentley de Sury (Sunday de Riverland x Calvaro) as well as Marlon Modolo Zanotelli (BRA) and VDL Edgar M (Arezzo VDL x Marlon) all joined the jump-off. 

The jump-off turned into a real battle of champions, with the 2012 Olympic team champion Scott Brash and Hello Jefferson setting the standard with 37.09 seconds – a time that in the end only was good enough to finish fifth. Henrik von Eckermann and King Edward – 2022 double World Champions and 2020 Olympic team gold medallists – stopped the clock on 36.45, taking over the lead from Brash, but had to see Switzerland’s rising stars Schmitz and Quno improving the time to beat when the pair crossed the finish line in 35.72. While Harry Charles and Balou du Reventon slotted in between Brash and von Eckermann with their time of 36.78, it was only Zanotelli and VDL Edgar M standing in the way of a Swiss victory. As the last pair out, Zanotelli and his faithful VDL Edgar M gave the Saturday evening at Jumping International de Bordeaux a fairy-tale finish, snatching the win with a time of 35.39 and pushing Schmitz to the runner-up position, von Eckermann to third, Charles to fourth and Brash to fifth. 

Photo © Artistes Associés Runners-up: Edouard Schmitz and Quno. Photo © Artistes Associés.

“Of course, to go at the end of a jump-off like this, is always easier; you can see and make a plan,” Zanotelli said after his victory. “However, if I would have gone earlier, I would have had the same plan. I discussed it with my wife Angelica; the strides I was going to do and the lines, and I don’t think I would have ridden it differently had I gone later. Edgar has experience and we knew how to ride the lines how we wanted to, and today it worked out for me and I am very happy with that.”

“I think there is a bit of both,” Schmitz – who also placed second in the World Cup in Amsterdam last weekend – said when asked if he felt frustrated or happy with another runner-up position. “Of course, when you go into a jump-off, you go to win, and so on that side the goal was not attained today, but my bigger goal was to qualify for the final in Omaha, and the way it looks with the points after today, it starts to look very good – so I am very pleased about that. And, as I’ve said, we all do this sport for the emotions, and when you can be a part of a jump-off like this, as a rider, or as somebody in the audience, it is exactly what we all love the most, and I am very glad that I was a part of it today, again.” 

“Considering that I have two horses that are performing well on this level, what the strategy is for Omaha – if I am going to take both of them or only one of them, that is a tough question,” Schmitz said about his plans towards the April final. “The initial plan was to give Gamin a break to build up towards the World Cup Final and to ride Quno in the last qualifications, and now that Quno was so good in Amsterdam and again today, it is for sure going to be a discussion next week what we are going to plan for the World Cup Final. However, I think one of the strengths of the system the Fuchs-family has, is to stay true to what you decided in the first place, and trust your horses to the max. I think that is what we most probably are going to do as well; just trust Gamin with that final.” 

Photo © Artistes Associés Henrik von Eckermann and King Edward finished third. Photo © Artistes Associés.

“I am just happy; like Edouard said, we do this for the emotions,” the third placed von Eckermann said. “Every day, when I work with the horses, that is my pleasure, and I have to say, with King Edward, you don’t see if he has a bad day… Maybe I feel there is a little difference, but now, the way he jumped and felt today, I think the last time he felt like this was the World Championship – so that makes my joy, even if I am third. It is one thing to do one or two good classes, or win two or three Grand Prix classes, but to keep the horses emotionally motivated is a big goal for me and every time he comes in the ring and he feels like this, it is a win for me.” 

“I am happy I don’t have that job,” von Eckermann said, referring to the course designer, when asked about his thoughts on the course. “It is a very tough job. Here today, we had so many good riders and horses – and it is always easy to be smart afterwards. If I would say something, then maybe the beginning of the course was a little bit too easy; the first five, six jumps, I don’t want to say they were for nothing, but they were too easy. And, of course, the time (allowed) was also a little bit long. On this level, when the riders don’t need to even think about the time, the clears are coming. I am not in favour of having the time so short that you have to race around the course, but just that you have to have it in your head, that you have to watch out – that makes a difference.” 

“For me, it was perfect,” Zanotelli joked about the course. “I don’t know if I have enough points for the final now, but if there are enough points, yes, I will take Edgard there,” he said about his thoughts on the World Cup Final in Omaha in April. “It is something I have never done in my career – jumped a World Cup Final – and it is something I really want to do, at least once, hopefully more times – and hopefully give a bit trouble to this guy there,” he poked von Eckermann. 

Photo © Artistes Associés The happy winners in Bordeaux: Marlon Modolo Zanotelli and VDL Edgar M. Photo © Artistes Associés.

“Edgar is coming with a lot more experience now,” he continued to speak about his horse. “Two years ago, I could not ride so fast; he was so eager to go to the jump, and he needed to take more time. Today, I can give him time on the last stride, I don’t have to give him time so early, and I think that is now making him a quicker horse. He has always been quick on the ground, if the jump-off suits him a little bit he is really good in his turns both left and right. Also, he is a very sensitive horse, even if being such a big horse, he might not look like that – but he is very reactive. Today, after the last turn, to go forward, the reaction was so fast and he is in front of you straight away and you can get the first distance. So, he has really improved in that sense, and I think that is why he is winning more Grand Prix classes this past season than he did in the past. I am just lucky to have a horse like him on my side.” 

With his 15 points from Bordeaux, von Eckermann has now taken the lead on the overall WEL standings – ahead of Julien Epaillard in second, Daniel Deusser in third, Harry Charles in fourth and Kevin Staut in fifth. The 14th and last leg of the 2022/2023 season takes place in Gothenburg, Sweden, 22-26 February.

This photo has been added to your cart !

Your shopping cart »
This website is using cookies for statistics, site optimization and retargeting purposes. You consent to our cookies if you continue to use this website. Read more here.