Edward Gal & Sisther de Jeu Win Mechelen World Cup Qualifier

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Edward Gal and Sisther de Jeu. © 2010 Dirk Caremans/FEI
Edward Gal and Sisther de Jeu. © 2010 Dirk Caremans/FEI

MECHELEN, Belgium, Dec. 28–Reigning World Cup champion Edward Gal rode Sisther de Jeu to victory in the Mechelen World Cup qualifying Grand Prix Freestyle Tuesday, the first competition for the Dutch rider in the 2010/2011 annual global dressage series.

Germany’s Ulla Salzgeber moved to the top of the West European League standings with her third place finish on Wakana that was enough to break the tie with compatriot Isabell Werth–at least until the next of the 10 qualifiers when No. 7 is held in Amsterdam at the end of January. The Final is scheduled for Leipzig, Germany at the end of April in conjunction with the World Cups of Jumping and Driving for the first time.

Edward and the 11-year-old Gribaldi mare were scored 78.60 per cent, the second highest score ever for the pair, behind only the 80.350 per cent they were awarded at Odense, Denmark in October, 2009,. That result was, however, overshadowed by the record-setting marks for his other mount at the time, Moorlands Totilas, the black stallion on whom he went on to capture the World Cup and then three gold medals at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky before the black stallion was sold to Germany.

In Tuesday’s Freestyle, Hans Peter Minderhoud and Exquis Nadine finished second with 75.50 per cent, Ulla and 10-year-old mare were in third on 75.25 per cent and Germany’s Helen Langehaneberg on Damon Hill NRW finished fourth on 74.85 per cent.

Edward said he was happy with the improvement in Sisther de Jeu’s arena performance.

Last year, he said, it was difficult to compete her before a crowded indoor, but now “it’s actually getting better.”

The maximum number of points won by Hans Peter–the defending champion does not acquire points–put him in sixth place overall with 46 points, three points ahead of team mate Adelinde Cornelissen in the WEL standings, and the possibility of a place in Leipzig for him and his 2008 Olympic and 2010 WEG mount.

“In the Grand Prix,” he said of the 15-year-old Nadine he rode in the World Cup Final at Las Vegas in 2009, “I had a flashback to the amazing jump at the WEG when Exquis Nadine was affected by the noises around the arena! Don’t forget this was the very first time for her to enter a show arena again after the WEG.  So I decided today to ride a serpentine instead of a straight line toward the judge at C to avoid a too-energetic reaction. and it worked out very well. I was very happy with my test”

Helen and the 10-year-old stallion Damon Hill added enough points to move them up one place to fifth, behind Great Britain’s Richard Davison and Hiscox Artemis who placed seventh on 70.950 per cent Tuesday with the German-based Catherine Haddad of the United States, who did not compete in Mechelen, in fourth place.

Complete Grand Prix Freestyle results:

RK HORSE RIDER H C M B Total Perc.
1 SISTHER DE JEU – KWPN
Mare\Bay\1999\Gribaldi x Amor\
Edward GAL (NED) 76.00
84.00
73.00
80.00
77.00
80.00
75.00
82.00
784.50 78.450
2 EXQUIS NADINE – KWPN
Mare\Chestnut\1995\TCN Partout x Roemer\
Hans Peter MINDERHOUD (NED) 71.50
74.00
68.50
75.00
75.00
80.00
75.00
81.00
755.00 75.500
3 WAKANA – GER
Mare\Chestnut\2000\Wolkentanz II x Wanderbursch II\
Ulla SALZGEBER (GER) 73.50
81.00
73.50
77.00
68.00
72.00
74.50
79.00
752.50 75.250
4 DAMON HILL NRW – Westfalen
Stallion\Dark Chesnut\2000\Donnerhall x Rubinstein\
Helen LANGEHANENBERG (GER) 74.00
75.00
71.00
75.00
76.00
82.00
72.00
74.00
748.50 74.850
5 APOLLO VAN HET VIJVERSHOF – BWP
Gelding\Bay\2000\Welt Hit x Ritmeister\
Jeroen DEVROE (BEL) 74.00
78.00
73.50
80.00
67.50
73.00
69.50
76.00
740.00 74.000
6 WITHNEY VAN ‘T GENTHOF – BWP
Stallion\Bay\1999\Ferro x Balzflug\
Stefan VAN INGELGEM (BEL) 65.50
71.00
67.50
74.00
69.00
74.00
71.00
78.00
713.50 71.350
7 HISCOX ARTEMIS – GER
Gelding\Dark Bay\1999\Florestan x Delphi\
Richard DAVISON (GBR) 67.00
71.00
66.50
73.00
67.00
73.00
69.50
74.00
709.50 70.950
8 KOHLPHARMAS FLORETT AS – Westfalen
Stallion\Black\1997\Florestan I x Urofino\
Patrik KITTEL (SWE) 64.00
67.00
64.50
72.00
69.00
74.00
66.50
74.00
694.00 69.400
9 LE BEAU – Oldenburg
Gelding\Chestnut\1998\Le Coeur x Classiker\
Philippe JORISSEN (BEL) 68.00
71.00
64.50
72.00
65.00
69.00
66.00
70.00
686.00 68.600
10 DONNERFEE – GER
Mare\Bay\2000\Deniro x Rosenkavalier\
Claudia FASSAERT (BEL) 67.50
70.00
65.50
71.00
64.00
69.00
65.50
69.00
685.00 68.500
11 LOUIS D’OR – GBR
Gelding\Bay\1997\Heslegaards Louis x Grandis\
Henriette ANDERSEN (GBR) 66.00
69.00
65.00
70.00
64.50
70.00
65.50
71.00
683.00 68.300
12 RUBEL 13 – Oldenburg
Gelding\Black\1995\Rubinstein x Tin Rocco\
Fanny VERLIEFDEN (BEL) 64.50
67.00
63.50
71.00
65.00
70.00
63.50
69.00
672.00 67.200
13 QUESTION DE LIBERTé – BWP
Gelding\Bay\1999\Quidam de Revel x Lagano\
Johan ZAGERS (BEL) 64.50
66.00
59.00
70.00
62.00
66.00
62.00
68.00
653.50 65.350
14 RINTJE V – FRIES
Stallion\Black\1997\\
Hans MEGANCK (BEL) 64.00
67.00
62.00
67.00
62.00
65.00
63.50
68.00
644.00 64.400
15 DAIANIRA VAN DE HELLE – BWP
Mare\Bay\1999\Dream of Glory x Ritual\
Vicky SMITS-VANDERHASSELT (BEL) 58.50
62.00
58.50
63.00
60.50
63.00
60.00
60.00
610.00 61.000