By Louise Parkes - FEI
Team USA claimed the top step of the podium in Bratislava, Slovakia today when winning the eighth leg of the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Europe Division 2 series. Drawn eighth to go of the 13 competing nations, the American riders shared a zero score with Brazil at the halfway stage. But when both pathfinder Catherine Pasmore and third-line rider Megan Nusz produced double-clear performances, then anchor rider Kirsten Coe didn’t have to jump a second-round because the four-fault result returned by Quentin Judge was all they had to count and would be good enough for the win.
Brazil finished with eight on the board for runner-up spot ahead of Finland on 12 while Austria slotted into fourth with 13, and Germany finished next in line when collecting 16 faults. Sweden finished sixth when posting a final score of 19 faults, while Switzerland and France shared seventh place when each racked up a 20-fault total. Only eight of the 13 teams returned in the second round, and the host nation of Slovakia missed out when picking up 13 faults in the opening round.
Course designer, Eduard Petrovic, commented, “My ultimate objective was to have as many riders ‘survive’ but also to make it difficult enough. We want riders to keep coming year after year and to be intrigued by the challenge that they face here – to relish it”.
This was the fifth time for Petrovic to build the courses at CSIO Bratislava which celebrates its 48th edition in 2013, and he remarked, “the quality of competition has risen year-on-year. The competition has gone up a notch every time and that is great. The Slovak Republic and Hungary are two countries that are attracting more and more skilled and competent riders which is very exciting for the Eastern European region. The footing here is absolutely fantastic and the OC is really pushing for this event to become better and better” he pointed out.
His 12-fence track included an open water and a triple combination, but there were no colossal scores during the day and just two eliminations from 52 starters - Sweden’s Linda Heed with Be Wonderful and Pascal Bettschen with Milor Landais, members of the winning Swiss team at Linz, Austria in May.
It was Pasmore who led the way for the US with an opening clear from Bonanza van Paemel, and when both Judge with HH Dark de la Hart and Nusz who was making her Nations Cup debut with Dynamo all left the first-round course intact then the five faults collected by the anchor partnership of Coe and Calypso was the first-round discard.
Alvaro de Miranda kicked off for Brazil with a five-fault result with his horse, Show Show, but when Pedro Veniss (Amemoi O Sandor), Marion Modolo Zanotelli (Clowni) and Bernardo Alves (Dolores) each kept a clean sheet then the two sides were on level pegging at the end of round one. However only Alves managed a foot-perfect run in round two as de Miranda left two on the floor and Veniss and Zanotelli picked up four faults each to bring their tally to eight.
The Finnish team carried just four faults into round two after clears from both Satu Liukkonen (Celestine) and Kaarlo Kovacs (Agropoint Cassius).But despite a second-round clear from anchor rider Anna Julia Kontio (Fardon), the other three team members including pathfinder Maiju Mallet (Armani the Gun CH) faulted once second time out to leave them with 12 on the board at the end of the day.
US Chef d’Equipe, Kent Farrington, was well-pleased with the win. “It was really exciting for us to bring a team of developing riders” he said. “It was Megan’s first time competing in the Nations Cup and she jumped a double clear which is absolutely fantastic. These are four very qualified riders, so there is no weak link in the team. Kirsten Coe is the most experienced, which is why she had the anchor position today. Catherine Pasmore has a lot of experience, even as young junior and rider, so I knew she would be very comfortable with being the first rider in our team. Quentin and Megan both have very capable horses and are very competitive riders so they could have gone in either order: it was a toss-up. We did really well and, in the end, Kirsten got to save her horse which is great” he pointed out.
“Our strategy was to send a more senior team to Hickstead, which gave us the opportunity to bring younger riders and younger horses here to Bratislava to gain experience and develop. This is all down to the new format of the Nations Cup” he explained.
Farrington will be back in the saddle himself next week, lining out in the last qualifying round of the Furusiyya FEI Nation Cup™ Europe Division 1 league in Dublin, Ireland on Friday afternoon. “It’s my first time being Chef d’Equipe so I might retire undefeated and keep my record intact!” he said with a grin.
A LOT OF FUN:
Nusz said she really enjoyed herself. “I had a lot of fun. This was my very first Nations Cup and it was great being here with such great riders and such a fantastic Chef d’Equipe. The show ground was beautiful. The course was great as it allowed for clean rounds but it was difficult enough to make you think and ride. The surface was great, with no problems areas, which is always nice for the horses, especially going for a second round. I was glad I was able to put in two solid rounds, especially since I was the rookie, which isn’t an easy spot to be in!”
Quentin Judge said that the new-format Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ series has opened the door of opportunity for many riders. “I think it has been really beneficial for us. For countries like the US, it would be harder for riders like us to join the Super League so we are given the opportunity of competing in a Nations Cup. To get this type of experience before going on to a more senior team is a fantastic opportunity” he said, adding, “we really appreciate the FEI and the organisers for putting such on a great show and we want to jointly thank everyone involved in the show”.
Andrez Glatz, Show President of CSIO Bratislava, explained some of the challenges faced by the Organising Committee. “Slovakia is not a rich country and there is no hiding the fact that we need to work hard to ensure we get the resources to host such an event year-in, year-out. This helps explain why this year’s CSIO Bratislava is a 3- star event, when it was a 4-star in previous years” he said.
“I have been involved in this event since 1965. We start planning for CSIO Bratislava in September in preparation for the event set to take place the following year. It’s not just about the growth, it is also about raising the quality and ensuring it gets better every year. The results are tangible, and it is demonstrated by the number of nations and riders that are competing. For the past eight years we have had anywhere from 13 to 17 nations competing here. The success has been consistent. The only difference is that riders used to have two horses for competition and this year it is three which has meant that we’ve had to place restrictions on the number of competing nations we can actually accept” he said.
There were six teams battling for points in today’s contest - Austria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Poland and the host nation of Slovakia - and it was Finland who collected the most points for the highest placing of the day when slotting into third. This leaves them in fourth place on the Europe Division 2 leaderboard which continues to be led by Belgium followed by Sweden in second and Norway in third going into the next leg at Gijon, Spain at the end of August. Austria, Denmark, Poland and Bulgaria hold the next four places. A total of eight teams from Europe Division 2 will qualify for the inaugural Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Jumping 2013 series Final in Barcelona, Spain at the end of September.
For further information on the 18th leg of the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Jumping 2013 series at Bratislava, Slovakia go to website www.csio.sk or contact Press Officer Michal Žitný M: +421 918 500148 firstname.lastname@example.org
The next leg of the Europe Division 2 series takes place in Gijon, Spain on Friday 30 August 2013. For all information on the Spanish fixture go to website www.gijon.es/hipico
1. USA 4 faults: Bonanza van Paemel (Catherine Pasmore) 0/0, HH Dark de la Hart (Quentin Judge) 0/4, Dynamo (Megan Nusz) 0/0, Calypso (Kirsten Coe) 5/DNS.
2. Brazil 8 faults: Show Show (Alvaro Alfonso de Miranda) 5/8, Amemoi O Sandor (Pedro Veniss) 0/4, Clowni (Marion Zanotelli) 0/4, Dolores (Bernardo Alves) 0/0.
3. Finland 12 faults: Armani the Gun CH (Maiju Mallat) 8/4, Celestine (Satu Liukkonen) 0/4, Agropoint Cassius (Kaarlo Kovacs) 0/4, Fardon (Anna Julia Kontio) 4/0.
4. Austria 13 faults: Emir vh Molenid (Dieter Kofler) 4/4, Royal des Bissons (Astrid Kneifl) 1/0, Texas (Markus Saurugg) 0/12, Connycor (Stefan Eder) 12/4.
5. Germany 16 faults: Taquila (Sebastian Karshuning) 4/0, Cash (Simone Blum) 0/12, Dante de Joter (Thorben Kohlbrand) 4/8, Cassius (Andreas Knippling) 8/0.
6. Sweden 19 faults: Be Wonderful (Linda Heed) Elim/6, Duchess van de Zuthoe (Elin Janson) 1/12, Easy Contact Humlan (Mariano Maggi) 0/0, Newton Nickel (Angelie Von Essen) 4/8.
7. Switzerland 20 faults: Nouvelle Europe (Faye Schoch) 4/4, Oceane de la Taille (Evelyne Bussmann) 0/0, Nirvana Basters (Frederique Fabre Delbros) 12/4, Milor Landais (Pascal Bettschen) 8/Elim.
7. France 20 faults: Rhune d Euskadi (Marie Demonte) 4/8, Origan de Vains (Jaques Helmlinger) 8/8, Marlou de Etisses (Alexis Borrin) 8/0, Quastor de la Vallee (David Jobertie) 0/0.
9. Slovakia 13 faults IN FIRST ROUND: Centor (Andrej Holly) 8. Lord Levisto (Jana Slavikova) 5, Pinocchio (Monika Stangelova) 4, Concano (Bronislav Chudyba) 4.
10. Hungary 16 faults/263.64 seconds IN FIRST ROUND: Dr Oklund (Gyula Szuhai) 10, PM Jumping Lady (Balazs Horvath) 4, Timpex Cent (Gabor Szabo) 8, Chacco Boy (Szabolcs Krucso) 4.
11. Czech Republic 16 faults/266.87 seconds IN FIRST ROUND: Kallisto (Jiri Skrivan) 0, Luka's Ninja (Zuzana Zelinkova) 8, Bel Canto Hradiste (Kamil Papousek) 8, Zidande P (Ales Opatrny) 8.
12. Poland 24 faults/268.09 IN FIRST ROUND: Duke of Carneval (Radoslaw Zalewski) 19, Abigej (Marek Lewicki) 0, Zoweja (Marek Ludwiczak) 8, Denetor (Gregorz Kubiak) 16.
13. Italy 24 faults/284.28 IN FIRST ROUND: Fixdesign Chopin (Filippo Bologni) 5, Caesar (Rebecca Lippi Bruni) 11, Lucky du Reverdy (Nicolo Montini) 16, Calida (Federico Ciriesi) 8.
FACTS AND FIGURES:
Bratislava in Slovakia presented round 18 of the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Jumping 2013 series and the eighth leg of Europe Division 2.
13 nations lined out in today's competition.
The competing countries were Austria, Brazil, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovak Republic, Sweden, USA and Switzerland.
8 teams qualified for the second round.
5 horse-and-rider combinations jumped double-clear rounds - America’s Catherine Pasmore (bonanza van Paemel) and Megan Nusz (Dynamo), Brazil’s Bernardo Alves (Dolores), Sweden’s Mariano Maggi (Easy Contact Humlan) and Switzerland’s Evelyne Bussmann (Oceane de la Taille).
The inaugural Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Jumping 2013 Final will take place at the Real Club de Polo in Barcelona, Spain 26-29 September.
Course designer in Bratislava today was Eduard Petrovic.
CSIO Bratislava celebrates its 48th edition this year.
Course designer Eduard Petrovic - “I tried to create a challenging course, but one that was also enjoyable and straightforward at the same time. If you over do it, then you run the risk of ruining the event. The triple combination was difficult, especially for the standard of course in this part of Europe”.
Megan Nusz, USA - “I have never experienced anything like this before. I have a great group of horses. It is my first show in Europe in my career. I did Spain last week and then came here – I feel like I am on top, which is obviously great”.
Catherine Pasmore, USA - “It was absolutely a group effort – everybody pulled their own weight which is always the best method to win. There wasn’t a weak link in this team and that was really helpful”.
Megan Nusz and Dynamo jumped double-clear on their Nations Cup debut to help secure victory for the USA in the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Europe Division 2 leg at Bratislava (SVK) today. Photo: FEI/Milina Imrichová-Strihovská.