Until further news, Edwina Tops-Alexander will still be the Queen of Casas Novas winter competition. Yesterday, the Australian rider reigned supreme in the Grand Prix Longines FEI World Cup – Caixabank Trophy, seventh leg of a world competition held for the third consecutive year in A Coruña. If last year was California which led her to victory, this time was 9 year old Vinchester, the horse which completed a relentless round in every jump and every turn. A time of 42.26 seconds gave the victory, which the public La Coruña dedicated applause similar to those given to the locals. Only a week ago, the Australian rider won the Longines GP Masters in Paris.
If Tops-Alexander improved the previous three times which had scored no penalties (Kukuk, Robert and Verlooy), the next three riders were also a nail biter for her: Emanuele Gaudiano and Ludger Beerbaum spurring Chalou and Cool Feeling respectively, although they finally became second and third with 43.01 and 43.26.
The top five was completed by Jos Verlooy, fourth place and who stopped the clock with Igor in 44.24 seconds, and fifth place was awarded to Olivier Robert with Tempo de Paban, 45.19 and Tempo de Paban.
The difficulty of the circuit, wit 1.60m fences and maximum level, made only 10 candidates fight it out for the weekend’s leading awards. In a list of 38 pairs, only the German Kukuk managed to score no penalties out of the first 19 ones. It was in the second half when more clear rounds began to appear: Karlsson, Robert, Verlooy, Patteet, van Asten, Tops-Alexander, Gaudiano, Heiss and Beerbaum. But at the same time, the difficulty of the circuit was leaving other big names behind: Whitaker, Epaillard, van der Vleuten, Lynch and Álvarez Aznar among others, who were prevented from participating in the final round.
Another test of category 5* held today in Casas Novas, the Prosegur Trophy, left a victory for Holland at the hands of Maiker van der Vleuten with Dana Blue. Their 25.24 seconds did not only snatch the win from Emanuele Gaudino (25.58 seconds with Quinn van de Heffinck), but also from the rest of the competitors. Among those who tried it was the Spanish Eduardo Álvarez Aznar, which finally achieved the third place aboard Uqualin du Saulcy (25.66 seconds).
HORSE RIDING AT THE HIGHEST LEVEL WILL BE BACK IN A CORUÑA NEXT SUMMER
Casas Novas Winter Edition drew to a close today and time begins to discount for the outdoor edition of this event. It will be in summer 2019 when the best horses, horsemen and horsewomen of the equestrian scene will return to these facilities considered to be some of the best in the world.