Carl Hester and Uthopia enjoyed a successful visit to the CDI Schindlof in Fritzens, Austria, with a grand prix win on Friday (77.340%) and a second place in the grand prix special on Sunday morning (74.356%).
Despite mistakes in the one tempis and inaccuracies in the pirouettes, Carl was happy with the 11-year-old stallion by Metall.
“This was the first outdoor of the season for us, and only our second show after a fairly long break, so Uthopia was suffering a little from nerves and tension“, Carl told Horse & Hound. “He still gave me a great ride, and the mistakes in the pirouettes were mine.”
Thanks to a win and a second place in the small tour on Dances with Wolves, Hester left Fritzens as the most successful rider of this year’s show.
The grand prix special was won by Beatriz Ferrer-Salat, who rode Delgado to a score of 75.756% despite mistakes in the one tempis and a premature transition into canter out of passage. Nevertheless, according to Ferrer-Salat, this was still “Delgado’s best ride yet”.
Compatriot Juan Manuel Mu ±oz Diaz rode an inspired test on Fuego to snatch third with 73.978%, ahead of a British trio.
Emile Faurie finished just outside the top three with 72.578% on Elmegardens Marquis, followed by Emma Hindle on Diamond Hit (69.800%) and Henriette Andersen on Louis D’Or (68.756%). Italian-based Irish rider Anna Merveldt finished 7th with an impressive ride on Coryolano (68.400%).
In the afternoon’s grand prix k ¼r, Daniel Watson, the only Brit representative competing in the class, scored 64.625%, placing 11th. He rode the 12-year-old stallion Fideramber to music from the Lion King, composed by Thomas Farnon.
The k ¼r was won by Germany’s Dorothee Schneider on Forward Looking (75.625%), in front of Beatriz Ferrer-Salat on her second horse Faberge (71.375%).