The final phase track proved influential, particularly as the time was very tight, but the top two both held their nerve for faultless rounds.
“This year he’s jumped well every time, but never clear and this was the biggest track he’s every jumped, but he was perfect,” said Andreas. “We were under pressure to ride forward and that helped me — if the time isn’t tight I can be too careful and that’s not good for this horse.”
France’s Maxime Livio took second on Qalao Des Mers.
“This horse is careful, powerful, concentrating — all the things a rider wants, so if the riders helps him he’ll do his best,” said Maxime.
“This is my second runner-up place at four-star, last time I was behind William Fox-Pitt, this time Andreas. I will keep working to try to beat them, but I’m very happy for my horse and my team at home.”
New Zealand’s Tim Price cleared all the fences with Ringwood Sky Boy, but four time-faults dropped him a place from third to fourth.
Young German Julia Krajewski, the dressage leader, put in a foot-perfect performance to rise from fourth before this phase to third with Samourai Du Thot.
“He was jumping really high so I could ride forward, which was nice as I didn’t want any time-faults,” said Julia. “I’m very proud of him — he’s my little baby and we’ve been through every stage together — and I’m really going to enjoy the moment.”
New Zealand’s Andrew Nicholson’s two clear rounds gave him fifth (Qwanza) and seventh (Perfect Stranger). Australia’s Bill Levett was sandwiched between Andrew’s rides, his two time-faults with Alexander NJ letting him rise from ninth overnight to sixth.
Fellow Aussie Andrew Hoy had the most unfortunate time in today’s showjumping. Rutherglen had the first part of the double at six down, plus fence seven and the last element of the treble at 11. His 12 faults dropped him from sixth to 11th.
Oliver Townend, fourth overnight, did not present Black Tie at the final horse inspection and Louise Harwood finished best of the Brits in eighth on Whitson.
Her clear today moved her up from 14th overnight.
Louise said she learnt from her four time-faults with first ride Mr Potts.
“I thought I was going quite fast on Potts, so it helped me to have that round first,” she said. “But I’d always have ridden him quite fast as that suits him — he loves to be ridden as if it’s a jump-off, it makes him sharper off the ground.”
Full report in H&H this week, out 23 June.