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Reigning World Champion Jeroen Dubbeldam: “In my opinion the course builder did a very good job”

Thursday, 20 September 2018
FEI World Equestrian Games 2018

Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson Jeroen Dubbeldam. Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.

WoSJ had a chat with reigning World Champion Jeroen Dubbeldam, who had this to say about the first round of jumping at the FEI World Equestrian Games 2018 Bank of America Jumping Championships: 

“In my opinion the course builder (Alan Wade) did a very good job. It was jumpable for everybody. It was not crazy big, but big enough – no lucky winners. The best ones are now in the lead as it should be. 

It’s difficult to keep the focus on a day like this. It is such a long day. That is what Steve (Guerdat) and Marcus (Ehning) did though, they stayed sharp despite being at the very end of the class. They are both looking good, they produced top rounds. That was top level, and top sport from both. Chapeau! 

One that surprised – well, I don’t know if it surprised me actually because I have been in Calgary this summer, but perhaps others – was Blue Movie, the horse from Rowan Willis, that jumped really good. I watched Blue Movie during the summer, and she was jumping really well in the five-star Grand Prix classes too.

It’s very close on top. The Swiss looked good yesterday, as did the Dutch. Individually I was also happy with my own riders: Alonso (Valdez Prado) was super happy with a clear round, and Karen (Polle) rode – at least for me – a beautiful round.”

WEG debutant Devin Ryan: “It was a fun course to ride, and a lot of options”

Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson Devin Ryan. Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.

In the mixed zone, WEG debutant Devin Ryan shared his thoughts on the first qualifier and how it felt to compete on home soil:

“Alan made a great course. It was a fun course to ride, and a lot of options. It was a long course for the first day, but nothing too hard for the horses to jump. It was some beautiful jumps out there, it is always fun to go to different venues and have different jumps and I think that is going to come into play. I think my horse read that combination at the end of the ring differently, he just did not quite get the read on it. He is a young horse, only nine years old and I think those rails are going to catch a lot of people (…) Like I said, nice course, great course designer, good competition, great footing. It was a blast walking into the ring, and having the whole American crowd cheering you on! When you sit in the stands, and some people say ‘Oh, I don’t get nervous’ – I think everybody gets nervous. You sit in the stands and you feel it a little bit. It is unbelievable though, when I get on my horse – the confidence I have in him and all that goes away!”

Overnight leader Steve Guerdat: “The question of the heat is more an issue for the people rather than the horses”

Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson Steve Guerdat and Bianca, overnight leaders. Photo (c) Jenny Abrahamsson.

Overnigh leader Steve Guerdat got the question about how the heat affects the horses, and shared his experiences with the press: 

“The question of the heat is more an issue for the people rather than the horses. All the horses I had in my life liked the heat, they feel better – their bodies get looser than when it’s cold, then they are tighter in their bodies so I think it’s easier on the horses actually.”


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