The Masters, Olympia
Robert Smith scooped one of the jewels in Olympia’s crown, when Senator Kalusha earned the£11,000 winners purse in the Masters competition.
Seven qualified for the competition, and Robert was pushed all the way by fellow British rider TimStockdale, who faulted with Traxdata Parcival in the fifth, and final round.
With £4,000 in the prize-fund before the opening rider jumped £500 was added for every horse which jumped clear over the five fences, and at the start of every round except the final one, a fence, of the riders choice was raised.
Dropping out in the second round were perhaps three of the more fancied riders, Franke Sloothaak, Jerry Smit and Beat Mandli, who all incurred faults with Gio Granno, Secret Love and Lord Z.
Falling by the wayside in the next round were Helena Weinberg (Silwa Grandinus) and Peter Charles (Traxdata Corrada).
This left a head-to-head battle between Tim Stockdale and Robert Smith, and after they both remained clear at the end of the fourth round, a timed jump-off was needed to separate the British pair.
Jumping first, Tim Stockdale and Traxdata Parcival lowered two fences, which then left the door open for Robert Smith and Senator Kalusha, and the pair never missed a beat.
This was their second win of the week, the pair heading The Eurosport Christmas Stakes on the openingday.
“It sounds silly , but the first round for me was the hardest, as once the fences started going up, I knew the others wouldn’t out jump me,” said Robert.