Dutch sweep the board as Olympia opens

  • The favourite, world champion Anky van Grunsven, took the lead in last night’s qualifier and was followed by her pupil Edward Gal. Imke Schellekens-Bartles was joint third with British-based Kyra Kyrklund of Finland.

    Anky’s world cup champion partner Keltec Salinero produced an expressive test with just a small mistake in the extended walk when Salinero broke coming across the diagonal.

    “Salinero was very nervous about the arena so I was pleased with the test because he stayed quite relaxed,” said Anky. “He’s a spooky horse and needs to learn to settle down, but I was happy that he was relaxed and standing still in the halts.”

    Edward Gal made a big mistake in the two time changes with Group 4 Securicor Lingh, but is positive about his chances of finishing ahead of Anky in the freestyle, which he performs to a compilation of trance music.

    “I’m very polite, I let Anky go first, but tomorrow we’ll get out there and really go for it,” he said.

    Imke Schellekens-Bartles followed up on her win at Hickstead this year with a solid performance on the 11-year-old mare Sunrise.

    “There was a big atmosphere in the arena and it was all pretty exciting, so I was happy about the way she went. I was nervous as well and I didn’t know what to expect, but she is just so lovely to ride and I know what we can do,” said Imke.

    Equal third Kyra Kyrklund finished with 72.5% on Max at just his ninth grand prix.
    “I don’t take him to too many competitions because he loves to go to shows and I don’t want to take away that happiness,” said Kyra.

    Emma Hindle was best of the British riding Imke’s former Olympic ride Lancet. She scored 70.375% on the Hannovarian stallion, which was enough to put her into joint sixth with Lone Jorgensen of Denmark.

    Four other British riders made it into the draw for Wednesday night’s grand prix kur, including National champion Laura Bechtolsheimer and European team member Wayne Channon.

    Henriette Andersen contested her first ever world cup qualifier and finished 13th, producing a fluent test for 66.042% despite being the drawn first. Emile Faurie finished 15th with his Sydney Olympic ride Rascher Hopes, taking the last ticket for Wednesday night’s kur.

    FEI grand prix results

    1. Keltec Salinero (A van Grunsven NED) 76.083%
    2. Group 4 Securicor Lingh (E Gal) 74.75%
    eq3, Sunrise (I Schellekens-Bartles NED) & Max (K Kyrklund FIN) 72.5%
    6. Lancet (E Hindle GBR) 70.375%
    9. Douglas Dorsey (L Bechtolsheimer GBR) 67.625%
    11. Lorenzo CH (W Channon GBR) 66.875%
    13. Astonish (H Andersen GBR) 66.042%
    15. Rascher Hopes (E Faurie GBR) 65.875%
    17. Gambrinus (P Storr GBR) 65.375%
    21. Two Sox (M Eilberg GBR) 58.708%

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