Qatar’s Bassem Hassan Mohamed put in a spirited display with his 10-year-old grey gelding Argelith Squid, but had to settle for runner-up place, on the penultimate day of the Global Champions Tour last night.
At the glittering Al Shaqab arena, cheered on by the holiday crowd, the local hope looked set to win the big event of the night, the CSI5* 1.45m Speed Class. Bassem and Argelith Squid cleared the course without any penalties in 63.28 seconds, but fell short of Cian O’Connor’s winning time by 0.17 seconds.
O’Connor had finished his round with his nine-year-old bay Callisto earlier, as the Irishman set the pace after the favourites fell by the wayside. The 36-year-old cleared the tricky course with composure as Callisto combined perfectly. O’Connor collected €8250 for his effort. The third place went to Emily Moffitt USA in Cassius Clay, the pair coming home in 65.11 seconds.
In the penultimate event of the night, Germany’s Daniel Deusser surprised the field with his talented nine-year-old-chestnut mare Happiness van T Paradijs. The World No. 5 stormed to victory in 24.47 seconds to clinch the CSI5* 1.45m event, taking home €8250 of the €25,000 prize money on offer, as he set up his weekend perfectly in Doha.
Great Britain’s Laura Renwick and MHS Washington looked set to challenge for the lead, however galloped to the finish just shy of Deusser’s time, in 24.75 seconds. The Third place went to Sweden’s Olympic silver medallist Peder Fredericson with H&M Zaloubet, the pair finishing in 25.01 seconds.
Tonight, the season will come to closure with Rolf-G?ran Bengtsson of Sweden and Edwina Tops-Alexander of Australia battling for the overall title. The Grand Prix is nicely poised with Bengtsson looking for his maiden title, while Tops-Alexander goes for a record third crown.
Bengtsson is five points ahead of Tops-Alexander, and the pair have been in this position before, with the latter finishing on top in previous years.
Last night, Grand Prix top contenders Bengtsson and Tops-Alexander of Australia rode their first-choice horses in the two phase competition, with Casall ASK and Lintea Tequila jumping clear.
The two Olympic riders looked pretty evenly matched, both picking up one time fault apiece and finishing just tenths of a second apart. Edwina and Lintea Tequila finished on 61.01s, with Rolf and Casall ASK finishing on 61.84s, giving an early preview into just how evenly matched the Championship contenders are.
The triple combination course along the full length of the arena caused a few troubles, with the final element signifying the end of the first phase rolled by the lightest of touches.
Earlier, in the 1.40m Against the Clock competition, Khalid Mohammed al-Emadi emerged triumphant. Al-Emadi partnered Tamira IV as the two came come in 36.68 seconds to take home 16,500 Riyals. Mubarak Yousuf al-Rumaihi (SIEC Cosmos Wijngaardhoeve Z) and Nasser al-Ghazali (Quel Homme) finished second and third respectively, to complete Qatar sweep of the podium.
In the opening event of the day, the Invitational 1.20/1.25m competition, Abdullah al-Rajhi of Saudi Arabia got the better of the Qataris to come on top. Al-Rajhi astride H Zoe completed the course in 36.80 seconds. He was richer by 6,600 euros on the night.
Qatari’s Mubarak Yousuf al-Rumaihi (Limoncello 6) and Salem Rashid Mohammed al-Marri (Marfurlong Magic) finished second and third respectively.
Class N 3: Doha 2016 Invitational 1.20/1.25m
Table A: Against the Clock with Jump-Off
1. Abdullah al-Rajhi, KSA (H Zoe) Time: 36.80secs Prize: 6,600 euros
2. Mubarak Yousuf A S al-Rumaihi, QAT (Limoncello 6) 38.07; 4,000
3. Salem Rashid Mohammed al-Marri, QAT (Marfurlong Magic) 38.59; 3,000.
Class N 4: Doha 2016 Invitational 1.40m
Table A: Against the Clock with Jump-Off
1. Khalid Mohammed A S al-Emadi, QAT (Tamira IV) 36.68; 16,500 euros
2. Mubarak Yousuf A S al-Rumaihi, QAT (SIEC Cosmos Wijngaardhoeve Z) 37.72; 10,000
3. Nasser al-Ghazali, QAT (Quel Homme) 40.53; 7,500.
Class 01: Doha 2016 CSI5* 1.45m
Two Phases: A + A, Both Phases Against the Clock
1. Daniel Deusser, GER (Happiness van T Paradijs) 24.47; 8250 Euros
2. Laura Renwick, UK (MHS Washington) 24.75; 5,000
3. Peder Fredericson, SWE (H&M Zaloubet) 25.01; 3,750.
Class 02: Doha 2016 CSI5* 1.45m Table A: Against the Clock
1. Cian O’Connor, IRE (Callisto) 63.11; 8250 Euros
2. Bassem Hassan Mohammed, QAT (Argelith Squid) 63.28; 5,000
3. Emily Moffitt, USA (Cassius Clay) 65.11; 3,750
10:30 am: Invitational 1.20/1.25m - Two Phases: A + A, Both Phases Against the Clock
12:15 pm: Invitational 1.35/1.40m - Two Phases: A + A, Both Phases Against the Clock
2pm: CSI5* 1.50/1.55m Table A: Against the Clock with Jump-Off
5:15 pm GCT Grand Prix CSI5* 1.60m Table A: Two Rounds with Jump-Off,
1st and 2nd Round Against the
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