The Father Christmas Stakes, Olympia
Ludger Beerbaum and Figaro’s Boy notched up a winning double, when they producedone of only two double clear rounds to win The Father Christmas Stakes.
The in-form pair had also won an exciting jump-off class the previous evening , and the German champion was again full of praise for the Oldenburg gelding, who he has ridden for the past 18 months. “As you see, he loves to win,” said Ludger afterwards. ” He is fast, but can take on the bigger fences too, and he always tries his best for you.”
Producing the first double clear round from fourth draw in the six strong jump-off field, Ludger steered an economical course, but their time looked beatable.
Next drawn Jan Tops also brought Grande Dame home clear, but some way in arrears, and the final challenge looked the most serious, as young Robert Whitaker entered the ring.
Roared on by the crowd, 17-year-old Robert conjured a brilliant round from the relatively inexperienced Qualisca, and they clocked the fastest time of all, but at the expense of pushing a railoff at the first part of the double.
Results: The Father Christmas Stakes. 1, Figaro’s Boy (L Beerbaum); 2, Grande Dame (J Tops); 3, Qualisca (R Whitaker); 4, Opstalans Medline (R Goran-Bengtsson); 5, QuerJac De LFAin (H Bourdy); 6, Meurer’s Le Patron (R Tebbel).