Julien Epaillard and Usual Suspect D’auge. PC: LGCT / Stefano Grasso
The final CSI5* class of the opening day at LGCT Paris saw France’s Julien Epaillard and Israel’s Danielle Goldstein take a tied win in the six bar competition, with the final height set at an impressive 1.95m.
As the sun began its slow descent behind the Eiffel Tower, 12 riders took part in the competition, which saw the height of the poles gradually increase after every round. Olivier Robert (FRA) with Victor du Reverdy and Vincent Bartin (FRA) with Vintage Sologne were knocked out in the first round, as the rest of the field all jumped double clear. Danielle Goldstein and Cooler Than Me. PC: Stefano Grasso/LGCT
But as the height increased, so did the pressure, and Eduardo Menezes (BRA) with Quintol, Jos Verlooy (BEL) with Apollonia 23, Henrik von Eckermann (SWE) with Chacanno and Christian Ahlmann (GER) with Taloubet Z all knocked out in the third round.
Up once more went the height, this time claiming David Will (GER) with Bandolino as the German was almost unseated at a last minute stop. Similarly Mathieu Billot (FRA) and Rivage de Ligny were eliminated, after running out at the final hurdle.
With just four left to go, it was a case of he who dares wins. Christian Kukuk (GER) and Carilot put in a valiant try, but knocked the pole, and Denis Lynch (IRL) with RMF Zecilie also fell short of the impressive height.
So it was down to Julien Epaillard with his horse Usual Suspect D’auge, with Danielle with the magnificent Cooler Than Me who jumped the final height clear, with both horses showing all the scope to finish clear and take the win.
Tomorrow will see the Global Champions League final, and the Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Paris take place under the iconic Eiffel Tower. Tune in via GCT and GCL TV to watch how the action unfolds and see who will be crowned winner in the beautiful French Capital.