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Rob Heiligers and Cassius Clay VDV Z fly to the win in the Sires of the World 2019

Friday, 20 September 2019
FEI/WBFSH World Breeding Jumping Championships for Young Horses 2019

Photo © Nanna Nieminen for World of Showjumping. Rob Heiligers with Cassius Clay VDV Z. Photo © Nanna Nieminen for World of Showjumping.

 

Text © World of Showjumping

 


 

After an exciting jump-off, Rob Heiligers (NED) and the 9-year-old Zangersheide stallion Cassius Clay VDV Z (Calvino Z x Wolfgang) snatched the victory in the 1.50m Sires of the World Grand Prix in Lanaken during the 25th edition of the traditional FEI/WBFSH Jumping World Breeding Championship for Young Horses. 

A total of 56 stallions – all approved for breeding – took part in the competition, but only six pairs cleared the demanding first round; Marlon Modolo Zanotelli (BRA) on the 10-year-old Diesel GP du Bois Madame (Cassius x Heartbreaker), Patrick Stühlmeyer (GER) on the 12-year-old Chacgrano (Chacco Blue x Grannus), Justine Tebbel (GER) on the 11-year-old Lycon (Light On x Contender), last year's winner Christian Ahlmann (GER) on the only 8-year-old Solid Gold Z (Stakkato Gold x Calvin Z) and Toni Hassmann (GER) on the 9-year-old Contendrix (Contendro I x Carinjo). 

With big names on the list, the stage was set for a fast jump-off. However, the poles kept falling when the speed went up – until Heiligers entered the ring with his grey stallion. Leaving all the poles intact, he took over the lead with the only double clear. 

Justine Tebbel and Lycon was the last pair in the ring, but also they had to see a rail fall – and the victory went to a very happy Heiligers who left Zanotelli to the runner-up position as the fastest four-faulter and Stühlmeyer to third. 

"This is the best show in the world, to jump a class like this with names such as Ahlmann and Zanotelli in it – it could not get better," Heiliger smiled after his win. "I've been riding Cassius Clay since last April, and from the first day I felt the scope and the power he has in him. He is not the fastest horse, he loses a bit of time in the air – on every fence. Today, when I saw everyone before me having fences down in the jump-off, I just tried to stay focused and give a 100% for a clear round," he explained. "I was maybe a bit lucky today, but this win gives me a lot of motivation. I work quite hard, I have a lot of young horses – for all the work I do, this gives me extra motivation, it makes you fly a little bit," Heiligers closed off. 

 

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