Linda Algotsson and her remarkable home-bred gelding Stand By Me won the first running of the Eventing World Cup final in the most convincing style, trouncing the field by a margin of 13.6 penalties.
On a rain-drenched day, when clear show jumping rounds were like gold dust, Linda did what she had done when winning the individual silver medal in Punchestown just five weeks ago: she “pointed him and he jumped”.
It was a fantastic day for the Algotsson family, with Linda’s sister Sara moving up from 12th to seventh in the final order on Stand By Me’s half-brother Robin du Bois. Both horses are home-bred Swedish Warmbloods.
Only three horses other than Stand By Me jumped clear rounds over the 12-fence track, which had a tight time allowance. For two of them, Andrew Nicholson’s partner Fenicio, and Gina Miles’s Mckinlaigh, it was sufficient to bring them into the medals, Andrew claiming the silver and Gina the bronze.
Two rails down dropped Frenchman Pascal Leroy and Eersteling du Leou, in second place overnight, to fifth, behind Germany’s Peter Thomsen on Bordou.
Disaster struck Pascal’s compatriot Eddy Sans, who went into the show jumping in third place on Ecile. The horse was one of many to lower the bogey second fence before being eliminated at the third, a simple-looking triple bar.
No British riders took part in the show jumping after a terrible cross-country day, which saw Clare Chamberlayne’s Headley Kingdom sustain severe injuries to the ligaments in his off-fore pastern in an accident at fence four.
The 12-year-old, who Claire had brought up through the ranks since she first started riding him as a five-year-old, was put down as a result of his injuries.
1, Linda Algotsson (Stand By Me) SWE 38.0;
2, Andrew Nicholson (Fenicio) NZL 51.6;
3, Gina Miles (McKinlaigh) USA 53.0;
4, Peter Thomsen (Bordou) GER 54.3;
5, Pascal Leroy (Eersteling du Leou) FRA 57.1;
6, Henri Bernard (Fleuron des Pres) FRA 60.7;
7, Sara Algotsson (Robin des Bois) SWE 64.4;
8, Matt Ryan (Bonza Puzzle) AUS 64.9;
9, Magnus Gallerdal (Keymaster) SWE 69.1;
10, Gilles Pons (Daguet du Rochau HN) FRA 70.9.