Australian showjumper Edwina Tops-Alexander has been crowned the overall winner of the 2012 Global Champions Tour (GCT) for the second year running.
In the final grand prix of the 12-leg series in Abu Dhabi on Saturday night, both she and her nearest rival, Sweden’s Rolf-Goran Bengtsson, faulted in round one. This left them on equal points, but Edwina was awarded the €294,500 first prize courtesy of her higher best placing of the season — victory in the opening grand prix in Doha.
“I was quite nervous today but I was looking forward to jumping,” said Edwina, who paid tribute to her outstanding 16-year-old Cevo Itot Du Chateau. “He won the rankings for me — he was an amazing horse last year and even better this year.”
Britain’s Michael Whitaker jumped up the overall rankings to a podium third — winning nearly €125,000 — after taking fourth in Saturday’s €400,000 Gucci grand prix of Abu Dhabi on nine-year-old Antello Z.
“This is the biggest he’s ever jumped — I didn’t expect to be clear in the second round,” said Michael, who rode a double clear, adding just one time-fault in round one.
The delighted winner of the final grand prix of the 2012 season was Ukraine’s Katharina Offel riding Fidji Island.
Read the full report from the GCT final in this week’s Horse & Hound (29 November)