Schroder clinches first CHI Al Shaqab CSI 5* GP title
March 30 2013 11:02 PM
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Dutch rider Gerco Schroder aboard London after his win in the CHI Al Shaqab CSI 5* Grand Prix at the
Dutch rider Gerco Schroder aboard London after his win in the CHI Al Shaqab CSI 5* Grand Prix at the Al Shaqab Arena in Doha yesterday.

By Yash Mudgal/Doha

Dutch rider Gerco Schroder showed fine horsemanship to clinch CSI 5* Grand Prix of the first CHI Al Shaqab here at the state-of-the-art Al Shaqab arena yesterday night.

The World Number 3 aboard London, lived up to his reputation as he had two clear rounds and later convincingly finished the jump off in 40.37s, almost three seconds before his closest rival Denis Lynch of Ireland, who finished in 43.34s, on All Star 5.

The third place was bagged by Clarissa Crotta of Switzerland. She was very swift on West Side and leading till the jump-off with amazing first and second rounds in the evening.

“I want to thank my horse London. He had three fantastic rounds in the evening. It was an amazing weekend here in Doha,” the 34-year-old Schroder said, who won silver medal at London Olympics.

“I am a happy loser today as I have finished second to Schroder. I have a nice time here and looking forward to be here next year,” Lynch said.

The fourth place went to four-time Olympic champion Ludger Beerbaum of Germany. Beerbaum finished the jump off on Chiara 222 in 38.87 with 4 faults.

Qatar’s Sheikh Ali al-Thani, who was on Cantaro 32, finished fifth out of six riders in the jump off. He clocked 41.93s with 4 faults. Sheikh Ali, riding on Cantaro 32, cleared both the rounds without any faults, was at the second spot going into the jump-off.

In all 18 qualified for the second round out of which only six entered the jump-off. Olympic champion Steve Guerdat of Switzerland on Nasa missed out the jump-off as he had has time fault in the second round. World No 5 Edwina Tops-Alexander on Cevo Itot du Chateau finished 8th in the first round 82.38, but she failed to make it to jump-off as Cevo had four faults at the last fence.

In the evening, Denmark Princess Nathalie Zu Sayn-Wittgenestein and Digby synchronised superbly on French music to win the Dressage Grand Prix Freestyle yesterday evening.

The 37-year-old princess, riding on Digby, garnered 78.825 percentage to emerge champion. She was followed by her compatriot Word No 34 Lisbat Seierskilde, who secured 74.425 percentage.

World Number 9 Swedish rider Patrick Kittel aboard Toy Story finished third with 74.275 percentage.

It was second win in as many days for the Danish princess, who helped Denmark finish at No 4 at the London Olympics. She also won the Dressage DI 4* Al Shaqab Grand Prix on Friday night. An ecstatic Nathalie said, “It was a fine win. It was a nice ride on Digby here. There was a slight error, but it was my fault not his. The music was tailor made for Digby and he was superb.” 

Patrick Kittel, who finished second on Friday, spoke about his delight at finishing at the podium said, “I am happy with my results here. I was second yesterday and third today. It was fantastic. There was a slight stumble at the last extension, but overall it was fantastic experience.”

“I am very pleased with my efforts,” said Lisbat Seierskilde, who was also a member of the Danish team at the London Olympics.

Earlier in the day, Jur Vrieling of The Netherlands board Sissi van Schuttershof wins the Small Tour CSI 3* Show Jumping 135m event by completing two clear rounds with the best timing of 44.99s. Great Britain’s riders Laura Renwick on Parvati De Breve and Robert Smith on Balourado also had clear rounds to claim second and third spots by clocking best timing of 46.47s and 46.55s, respectively.

Fourth place went to Emanuele Gaudiano of Italy, who was riding Admara 2, as he finished in 46.81s. Qatar rider Saeed Nasser al-Qadi put up an impressive show as he secured the fifth spot by completing two clear rounds on St Lucia in 48.31s. A total of 44 riders took part in the event out of which only 12 qualified for the second round.

“It was unbelievable, we had wings – particularly at the last fence!” said Jur Vrieling after winning the show. Laura Renwick, who was leading until the very last competitor went, said, “Parvati did everything I asked, but someone just went faster.”

The day started early as riders gathered at the Endurance Village at Mesaieed to take part in the Endurance CEI2*, a 120km race through the desert that tested the stamina of both the horse and the rider. Saif Ahmed al-Mazroui from the United Arab Emirates clinched the first place. The second place went to Aldjani Safinat. The Italian Marco Sardo riding Ningadoo Kamikaze came third.

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