Isabell Beaten, Sunshine Tour Starts and Racing in St Moritz

Dressage rider, Isabell Werth from Germany was beaten into second place in Neumunster for the World Cup qualifier by Jessica Von Bredow-Wendl. The first week of the Sunshine tour in Spain started with a warm up CSI Grand Prix and the ridiculous annual race meeting in St Moritz took place in the Swiss resort. The USA took the first Nations Cup competition of the year in Florida, but only just and Galileo in the news again!

Werth beaten in Neumunster.

Jessica Von Bredow-Werndl wins Grand Prix and Freestyle in Neumunster

In dressage, there was one of the final rounds of the World Cup qualifiers at the Neumunster CDI 5 star event. There were eighteen starters in the Grand Prix and it must have given birthday girl Jessica Von Bredow-Wendl great pleasure in beating her rival Isabell Werth into second place. Jessica was riding the Trekehner TSF Delera and won with a total score of 81.500%, more than 3% ahead of Isabell who scored 78.130% riding Emilio 107. In third was fellow German rider Benjamin Werndl riding Famoso with 74.587%. In the Grand Prix Freestyle, again Jessica beat Isabell with a final score of 89.640%, a personal best for her. Isabell scored 88.450% and in third was Helen Langehanenberg riding the Hanoverian horse Damsey FRH. With 85.220%. The German riders completed the top four with Benjamin Werndl coming fourth. This win for Jessica Von Bredow-Werndl puts her at the top of the rankings for the European leg of the World Cup qualifiers going to Las Vegas for the finals in April.

The first weekend of the Sunshine Tour.

This week saw the arrival and beginning of competition at Vejer de la Frontier, the well known European Spanish Sunshine Tour held each year. Starting with easier FEI jumping classes, the first Grand Prix at CSI 2 level was held over the weekend. This was a 25,000 Euro class with 70 riders starting over the 16 effort course. There were twenty individual nations represented from afar afield as China, the USA, Argentina and of course several European countries. Fourteen of the starters went clear and therefore through to the jump off where nine completed a double clear. The first winner of the year at this equine festival was from Belgium – Gudrun Patteet riding Sea Coast Kashmira Z a 10 year old mare. In second was Michael Duffy from Ireland riding Flint T’s with the third spot taken by Brazilian Pedross Vaness.

Wellington Winter festival continues

In the USA, the Wellington equine winter festival continued with the first round of the Nations Cup for the USA. This international competition ridden over two rounds, both rounds the same, was entered by seven countries. The best, with the fewest faults from the four riders in each team was The United States. Their team members were Jessica Springsteen, Margie Goldstein-Engel, Laura Kraut and Elizabeth Madden. At the end of the second round they were tied with Great Britain on a score of 8 faults who only had three members in their team. As a result, there was a jump off between the USA and GB. The USA rider went round the jump off course in 33.11 seconds and GB in 36,34 seconds. Amanda Derbyshire, Emily Moffitt and Alexandra Thornton rode on the GB team. The jump off, when only one selected rider from each team goes, was contested by Elizabeth Madden for the USA and Alexandra Thornton for GB. Mexico were third with a total of 17 faults.

Galileo win on the ice.

Horse racing on the snow and ice in Switzerland, the extraordinary annual race meeting at St Moritz got under way with Galileo scoring his first ever winner at the meeting as a sire. George Baker trained the winner of the most prestigious race of the festival, the Grosser Preis Von St Moritz with the four year old colt Wargrave, No doubt the prize money made some dent in the 100,000 guinea price tag which the trainer had to pay for the horse at the Tattersalls Horses in Training sale last autumn.

And finally some completely random information….

Galileo born in 1564, the great mathematician celebrated his birthday on Saturday. The Epsom Derby winner and famous Coolmore stallion named after the great man is shorty to have his anniversary in March. Galileo the stallion will be 22 years old.

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