Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and Shutterfly soared to success at the sixth IJRC Top Ten Final sponsored by Rolex in Geneva on Saturday. This was the second time the partnership had won this prestigious event after proving unbeatable in 2004.
The German rider was one of the favourites to take the substantial €50,000 winners purse, following her recent run of superb form which included winning the Munich Grand Prix and the FEI World Cup qualifier in Stuttgart, as well as finishing second in the Riders Tour final.
“It’s a wonderful feeling to win this competition again” said Meredith. “Shutterfly is the best horse in the world and I’m very proud of him. It has been so great that he could come out after two months rest following the World Equestrian Games in Aachen and find form again so quickly. This is a fantastic way for him to finish his year – I’m really delighted for him.”
Michael Whitaker was carrying British hopes in the final. A brisk first round performance on board Insul Tech Mozart des Hayettes to pick up two time penalties led the ground jury to re-consider the time allowed, reducing Michael’s penalties to just one.
Michael produced a clear inside the time at his second attempt but frustratingly it was only good enough for fourth place at the end of the competition. Afterwards he blamed himself for his first-round timing error. “It was stupid,” he said, knowing that the Top Ten title had slipped from his grasp.
Top Ten Final results
1, Shutterfly (Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum) GER 0/0 45.15;
2, MacKinley (Rolf Goran Bengtsson) SWE 0/0 47.38;
3, Eurocommerce Monaco (Gerco Schroder) NED 0/0 51.19;
4, Insul Tech Mozart des Hayettes (Michael Whitaker) GBR 1/0 56.56;
5, Nirmette (Markus Fuchs) SUI 0/4 47.00;
6, Lincoln (Albert Zoer) ND 4/0 47.57;
7, Gitania (Marcus Ehning) GER 4/4 51.85;
8, Jipey Dark (Jessica Kuerten) IRL 4/5 58.90;
9, Lorenzo (Christian Ahlmann) GER 0/1 49.75;
10, Gladdys S (Ludger Beerbaum) GER 0/Elim.