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Willem Greve and Highway M TN top Thursday night's CSI5*-W 1.50m Sport Vlaanderen Grand Prix at Jumping Mechelen 2022

Friday, 30 December 2022
CSI5*-W Jumping Mechelen 2022

Photo © Nanna Nieminen/WoSJ
Willem Greve and the 10-year-old stallion Highway M TN won Thursday night's CSI5*-W 1.50m Sport Vlaanderen Grand Prix at Jumping Mechelen 2022. Photo © Nanna Nieminen/WoSJ.

 

Text © World of Showjumping

 


 

Willem Greve and the 10-year-old stallion Highway M TN (Eldorado v. Zeshoek x Chellano) won Thursday night's CSI5*-W 1.50m Sport Vlaanderen Grand Prix at Jumping Mechelen 2022. 

The first-round track set by Eddy Geysemans (BEL) proved tricky, and in the end only five horse-and-rider-combinations managed to produce a clear round. As the second pair out in round one, Belgium's rising star Thibault Philippaerts (BEL) and Derby de Riverland (Kannan x L'Arc de Triopmhe) posted the first clear of the night, while directly after them Jeroen Appelen (BEL) and Moningo - D van'T Heyveld (Thunder van de Zuuthoeve x Brownboy) left all the fences intact as well, securing a jump-off to the joy of the cheerful Belgian crowd in the Nekkerhal. While the last fence caught out Philipp Weishaupt (GER) and Krokant (Kannan x Loran), Christian Ahlmann and Solid Gold Z (Stakkato Gold x Calvin Z) as well as Pieter Devos (BEL) and Claire Z (Clearway x Coronado), three more pairs posted clears and joined the deciding jump-off; Willem Greve and Highway M TN (Eldorado v. Zeshoek x Chellano), Olivier Philippaerts (BEL) and H&M Legend of Love (Landzauber x Corgraf) as well as Edouard Schmitz (SUI) aboard Gamin van'T Naastveldhof (Chacco Chacco x Toulon). 

In the jump-off, only the top two produced another clear round and it was Appelen that set the standard when crossing the finish line in 37.38 seconds aboard Moningo - D van'T Heyveld. Even though Olivier Philippaerts and his faithful H&M Legend of Love were faster, the last fence fell which left Philippaerts behind Appelen. A home win was not to be though; Greve and Highway M TN impressed once again with their immaculate style, stopping the clock on 35.36 – taking the win, and leaving Appelen to the runner-up position, Olivier Philippaerts to third, Thibault Philippaerts to fourth and Schmitz to fifth. 

Photo © Nanna Nieminen/WoSJ.
"He is an incredible horse for me," Greve said about Highway M TN. "He is owned by the Nijhof-family, who have been a great supporter for me through the years, first with Highway's father Eldorado and now with him, and Grandorado as well." Photo © Nanna Nieminen/WoSJ.

"It was big enough, and it jumped quite heavy," Greve said about the course. "In the first round, Highway felt really good. In the jump-off, I knew I had two fast combinations behind me so I had to push it a bit. Highway is very fast by nature, so I just tried to follow him," Greve said. "My horse has a high ground speed, and he is fast over the fences as well." 

"He is an incredible horse for me," Greve said about Highway M TN. "He is owned by the Nijhof-family, who has been great supporters for me through the years, first with Highway's father Eldorado and now with him and Grandorado as well. We have a very good partnership. I got Highway when he was seven, and he has always been a winner. Every challenge I have asked of him, he has done well, and together with Grandorado, they form a strong team of horses for me."

Greve was delighted to be ending his season on a high after plenty of ups and downs. "I had a great year, but then I broke my arm and my leg two weeks before the World Championships," he explained. "That was a disaster, but thanks to my team, my owners, the grooms and everyone in the stable, as well as Marc Houtzager who helped keeping my horses fit, I was quick in my recovery. As soon as I was ready, my horses were right there, ready to go, thanks to everyone – that made a big difference."

Thursday's second CSI5*-W class, a 1.45m against the clock presented by Miele went to Wilm Vermeir (BEL) and Linguini de La Pomme (Marius Claudius x Tinka's Boy) ahead of Julien Epaillard (FRA) and Donatello d'Auge (Jarnac x Hello Pierville) in second, Koen Vereecke (BEL) and Arioso du Bois (Rock'n'Roll Semilly x Qredo de Paulstra) in third, Thomas Ryan (IRL) and Karmel van de Watering (Diamant de Semilly x Quick Star) in fourth and Edouard Schmitz (SUI) aboard Babylone Des Erables (Chai D x Kashmir van het Schuttershof) in fifth. 



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