For this introduction to the CSI5*, the grand stands were already almost packed with an enthusiastic public, eager to support the best riders in the world.
In this opening class in two phases, over fences at 1m45, sponsored by Alvalle, the 36 pairs on the starting list had clear the first part within the time limit, and, immediately after the n°6, complete the course as fast as possible until the finish line, without knocking a single pole, of course.
Some of the riders chose to show the site to their horses, others clearly decided to play the game, and do everything possible to be on the podium. While 16 riders cleared the course, the Italian Luca Maria Moneta clinches victory with his 13 year-old Westphalian gelding, Connery. Second last to go, he completes the second phase in a time of 31″99. “I am very happy about my horse, I was just a little faster than everybody else, and it was good enough to win this class. Connery and I form a very strong pair, we know each other very well, I rode many classes with him. When I saw the leader was quite fast, I decided to go for it. I’d rather try to win and have a rail down, than clear the course and not be placed. My horse gave everything he had.” Tomorrow, Connery will be in the speed class sponsored by the Conseil départemental d’Ille et Vilaine at about 11.45am.
The American rider Beezie Madden, associated to Breitling LS, was in the lead since the beginning of the class with a time of 32″47. She finally had to do with 2nd place. Very pleased with her 10 years old horse, she said she would not have gone any faster even knowing that the Italian rider would bring her time down. “For me, this is a very encouraging start to the competition.”
In 3rd place, the French rider Jérôme Hurel, riding Urano, clears the second phase in a time of 32″57. “It is the beginning of the competition, I am pleased with Urano, he did the job very well. Tomorrow, he will be in the speed class at 1m45.”
Source: Véronique GAUTHIER / Agence Consulis