Totilas Wins Big With Matthias at Hagen CDI4*

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Totilas being ridden by Matthias Alexander Rath for a 10 in the final centerline passage-piaffe-passage tour. © 2012 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

HAGEN, Germany, April 28–Totilas performed the best Grand Prix since Matthias Alexander Rath began competing the black stallion a year ago to claim victory at the Horses & Dreams meets Great Britain CDI4* Saturday, and scoring a scant 0.276 per cent within the world record set by Edward Gal on Totilas in 2009.

The 12-year-old KWPN stallion (Gribaldi x Lominka x Glendale) with a beaming Matthias aboard displayed all the extravagant gaits that were trademarks of performances by the Dutch rider before Totilas was sold to Germany after the 2010 World Equestrian Games.

The score of 83.809 per cent was a personal best and included 14 marks of 10 from the five-member jury, all but one for piaffe and passage, the sole exception being for the final halt that brought thunderous applause from the 5,500 spectators who packed the stadium for the first competition for the pair since the European Championships eight months ago. The world record score in the Grand Prix is 84.085 per cent set by Edward Gal on Totilas at the 2009 European Championships. The pair hold the records for all three Grand Prix levels.

Not far behind was Great Britain’s Laura Bechtolsheimer and Mistral Hojris, the third ranked combination in the world, one slot ahead of Matthias and Totilas, on 82.745 per cent despite a mistake in the two-tempis. The 26-year-old German star Kristina Sprehe on Desperados 11 was third on 81.651 per cent, also a pesonal best but they have been competing on the senior tour with Desperados only since last August.

The top three places in this Grand Prix that was a qualification for the Freestyle to be held Sunday were filled by riders under 30 years of age–Matthias is 28, Laura 27 and Kristina 26, while Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin who won the Grand Prix for the Special a day ago is also aged 27.

And review by dressage-news.com of official results did not find any other major competition or championships where the top three places scored above 80 per cent.

However, the lineup at this show in this year of the Olympics to be held in London in three months included numerous hopefuls from 16 nations, several of them medal prospects.

The performance by Matthias and Totilas and Kristina and Desperados may also have changed the Olympic equation as Germany may now be able to send a squd to London to match the British team over the two tests that will decide team medals–the Grand Prix and the specially created Olympic Grand Prix Special.

Other nations have emerged as serious medal prospects based on the results of this and other recent competitions–more than a half-dozen Danish combinations capable of scoring in the mid to high 70 per cent range and Sweden.

The score for Matthias and Totilas also dispelled the rumors and gossip–much of it in reaction to a public relation campaign launched by the owners of Totilas and directed at television and mass circulation newspapers–that the horse was suffering from various maladies and that Matthias was incapable of replicating the results of Edward Gal.

Matthias, who has competed Totilas at only four CDIs, the first at Munich last June, said “relieved” was not the right word to describe his feelings over Saturday’s result.

“I’m not really relieved,” he said. “The result was great. I wasn’t surprised because we have been training well and we got what we expected. I’m happy to start the season like this.”

He denied adopting training methods usually applied to the Dutch–rollkur, of which there are many photos circulating on the Internet of Totilas with his mouth on his chest–but admitted to changes in training over the winter to optimize the horse’s movements.

“Of course, it’s a matter of getting to know the horse better,” he said. “We have changed a few things, and he is better in front of the leg, there is more submissiveness.”

Matthias will ride to a new freestyle based on Michael Jackson music in Sunday’s competition.

Great Britain's Laura Bechtolsheimer on Mistral Hojris executing their metronome-like passage.The pair were awarded four marks of 10. © 2012 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Laura Bechtolsheimer is one of the prospects for both team and individual medals on Mistral Hojris, the 17-year-old Danish warmblood gelding (Michellino x Virginia x Ibsen) that she has been aiming for the Games at home for several years.

Although “Alf,” as she calls Mistral Hojris, is 17 years  old, he is “so fit and light…maybe it has to do with the English water.”

“He is still fit and well because the Olympics have been my main goal for a long time, so for the last several year we have entered him in shows with that in view. At home, he does a lot of just gymnastic work and not drilling of movements.

“Alf and I are exactly where I want to be. He felt fantastic to ride. I couldn’t be happier.

“It’s fantastic to have team mates who can get over 80 per cent and is great for our confidence ahead of the big competition on our home soil.”

She joked, however, she will try harder to win the freestyle Sunday to get a first place show blankets adorned with the Union Jack that Charlotte Dujardin was given when she won the Grand Prix for the Special.

Kristina Sprehe and Desperados, an 11-year-old black Hanoverian stallion that she competed in the Under-25 division last year, confirmed their reputation as a German star.

“We have been improving from show to show and this is our personal best score so far,” she said. “Some minor things can and will change. It would be great to go to the Olympics. But we will take it as it comes.”

Kristina Sprehe and Desperados. © 2012 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Grand Prix de Dressage CDI4*

Judgs: E: Isobel Wessels (GBR)
H: Katrina Wüst (GER)
C: Ghislain Fouarge (NED)
M: Dr. Evi Eisenhardt (GER)
B: Dr. Jean-Michel Roudier (FRA)


# Rider Nation
Horse E H C M B Gesamt
 1 Matthias Alexander Rath 
Frankf.Turnierst.Schw.Gelb e.V
  Totilas 13
H / KWPN / R / 2000 / Gribaldi / / NED08021 / B: Linsenhoff u.Paul Schockemöhle, Ann  / Z: ZG Schuil, J.K. u.Visser,A.
 84,043%
395
(1)
 83,936%
394.500
(1)
 84,255%
396
(1)
 83,830%
394
(1)
 82,979%
390
(2)
 83.809%
1969.5
2.000,00 EUR
 2 Laura Bechtolsheimer 
GREAT BRITAIN
  Mistral Hojris
W / DK / F / 1995 / Michellino / Ibsen / DEN02686 / B: Bechtolsheimer,Laura
 82,340%
387
(2)
 83,085%
390.500
(2)
 82,234%
386.500
(2)
 82,021%
385.500
(3)
 84,043%
395
(1)
 82.745%
1944.5
1.300,00 EUR
 3 Kristina Sprehe 
RUFG Falkenberg e.V.
  Desperados 11
H / Hann / R / 2001 / De Niro 6 / Wolkenstein 6 / GER45347 / B: Gestüt Sprehe GmbH  / Z: Schütt, Herbert
 82,021%
385.500
(3)
 81,489%
383
(3)
 81,596%
383.500
(3)
 82,128%
386
(2)
 82,021%
385.500
(3)
 81.851%
1923.5
900,00 EUR
 4 Sidsel Johansen 
DENMARK
  Schianto
H / DK / B / 1999 / Gribaldi / Schwadroneur / DEN02780 / B: Rosbög,Jörgen
 74,149%
348.500
(4)
 74,362%
349.500
(5)
 73,830%
347
(4)
 74,894%
352
(4)
 73,191%
344
(9)
 74.085%
1741
700,00 EUR
 5 Lisbeth Seierskilde 
DENMARK
  Jonstrupgärdens Raneur
W / DK / B / 1999 / / DEN40807 / B: Seierskilde,Lisbeth
 72,872%
342.500
(5)
 74,787%
351.500
(4)
 72,872%
342.500
(5)
 74,574%
350.500
(6)
 73,830%
347
(4)
 73.787%
1734
500,00 EUR
 6 Anne van Olst 
DENMARK
  Exquis Clearwater
W / DK / B / 1998 / Carpaccio / Limebrand / DEN02595 / B: Munkedal,Klaus
 72,128%
339
(6)
 73,723%
346.500
(9)
 72,660%
341.500
(7)
 74,681%
351
(5)
 73,511%
345.500
(5)
 73.340%
1723.5
400,00 EUR
 7 Emma Kanerva 
FINLAND
  Sini Spirit
W / Hann / F / 1997 / Espri / Gluecksgriff / FIN40045 / B: Oy,Sinituote  / Z: Wiechert,Udo
 71,915%
338
(8)
 73,936%
347.500
(7)
 72,766%
342
(6)
 74,362%
349.500
(7)
 73,298%
344.500
(7)
 73.255%
1721.5
300,00 EUR
 8 Victoria Max-Theurer 
AUSTRIA
  Eichendorff 10
H / Westf / B / 1998 / Ehrentusch / Ferragamo / AUT04389 / B: Max-Theurer,Victoria  / Z: Borgmann,Norbert
 72,021%
338.500
(7)
 73,936%
347.500
(7)
 72,128%
339
(8)
 72,660%
341.500
(9)
 73,298%
344.500
(7)
 72.809%
1711
300,00 EUR
 9 Rose Mathisen 
SWEDEN
  Bocelli 28
H / S.Wbl / B / 1999 / Don Schufro / Bernstein / SWE04842 / B: Mathisen,Rose
 71,489%
336
(10)
 74,255%
349
(6)
 72,128%
339
(8)
 71,596%
336.500
(10)
 71,809%
337.500
(10)
 72.255%
1698
300,00 EUR
 10 Isabell Werth 
RFV Graf v.Schmettow Eversael e.V.
  Warum nicht FRH
W / Hann / F / 1996 / Weltmeyer / Wenzel I / GER23022 / B: Winter-Schulze,Madeleine  / Z: Luessen,Hinrich
 71,809%
337.500
(9)
 73,723%
346.500
(9)
 71,170%
334.500
(11)
 73,191%
344
(8)
 71,064%
334
(11)
 72.191%
1696.5
300,00 EUR
= 7.000,00 EUR
nicht plaziert:
 11 Nadine Capellmann 
RV Würselen 1925 e.V.
  Girasol 7
S / Württ / F / 2001 / Gribaldi / Landioso / 102UM07 / B: Capellmann,Nadine  / Z: Schönenberger,Matthias
 70,638%
332
(12)
 71,489%
336
(13)
 71,596%
336.500
(10)
 71,489%
336
(11)
 73,404%
345
(6)
 71.723%
1685.5
 12 Lyndal Oatley 
AUSTRALIA
  Sandro Boy 9
H / Old / B / 2001 / Sandro Hit / Argentinus / 103FQ47 / B: Oatley,Carol u. Andrew  / Z: Höffer,Heinrich
 70,532%
331.500
(14)
 71,702%
337
(11)
 71,064%
334
(12)
 70,213%
330
(12)
 68,830%
323.500
(17)
 70.468%
1656
 13 Patrik Kittel 
SWEDEN
  Silvano 71
H / KWPN / B / 1999 / Rubinstein I / Cocktail / SWE04848 / B: Kohl,Edwin  / Z: Wouters,F.
 70,106%
329.500
(16)
 71,596%
336.500
(12)
 70,745%
332.500
(13)
 68,617%
322.500
(15)
 70,000%
329
(14)
 70.213%
1650
 14 Andreas Helgstrand 
RSC Osnabruecker Land e.V.
  Laetaere
S / Ausl. / F / 2001 / / B: Helgstrand,Andreas
 71,064%
334
(11)
 70,426%
331
(15)
 68,723%
323
(15)
 69,894%
328.500
(13)
 70,745%
332.500
(12)
 70.170%
1649
 15 Lorraine van den Brink 
NETHERLANDS
  Murdock 9
W / KWPN / B / 1994 / Balzflug / Pretendent / GER22183 / B: Weisbrod,Anna  / Z: Hattem,H. van
 70,638%
332
(12)
 71,064%
334
(14)
 69,681%
327.500
(14)
 69,468%
326.500
(14)
 68,404%
321.500
(18)
 69.851%
1641.5
 16 Jan Ebeling 
USA
  Rafalca
S / Old / B / 1997 / Argentinus / Rubinstein I / USA10997 / B: Bökelheide,Uwe  / Z: Risch,Erwin
 70,532%
331.500
(14)
 69,149%
325
(17)
 67,766%
318.500
(18)
 68,404%
321.500
(16)
 69,574%
327
(15)
 69.085%
1623.5
 17 Liliann Jebsen 
NORWAY
  Pro-Set
H / KWPN / B / 1997 / Jet Set D / Flemmingh / GBR13819 / B: Jebsen,/Sommerschield Fam.  / Z: AJ Tas,Berkel en Rodenrus
 68,723%
323
(17)
 68,830%
323.500
(18)
 66,383%
312
(20)
 67,766%
318.500
(17)
 70,532%
331.500
(13)
 68.447%
1608.5
 18 Hubertus Schmidt 
Reiterverein Altenautal e.V.
  Bukowski
W / S.Wbl / B / 1999 / Briar / Junius xx / GER41640 / B: Hanwha Galeria  / Z: Magnusson,Erik
 67,979%
319.500
(19)
 69,362%
326
(16)
 67,979%
319.500
(16)
 67,340%
316.500
(18)
 69,149%
325
(16)
 68.362%
1606.5
 19 Maria von Essen 
SWEDEN
  Ferdi 43
W / Hann / Df / 1999 / Federweisser / Charmeur / SWE40758 / B: Bennergard,Alexander  / Z: Hilmer,Johannes
 67,872%
319
(20)
 67,553%
317.500
(20)
 67,979%
319.500
(16)
 67,234%
316
(19)
 67,340%
316.500
(21)
 67.596%
1588.5
 20 Terhi Stegars 
FINLAND
  Axis TSF
H / Trak. / R / 1999 / Sixtus / Angard / GER44244 / B: A bis Grand Prix,  / Z: Hartmann,Ewald
 68,191%
320.500
(18)
 66,596%
313
(21)
 66,596%
313
(19)
 65,213%
306.500
(23)
 67,872%
319
(19)
 66.894%
1572
 21 Henriette Andersen 
GREAT BRITAIN
  Louis D’Or 36
W / DK / B / 1997 / Heslegaards Louis / / GBR14571 / B: Anderson,Henrietta
 66,702%
313.500
(21)
 65,426%
307.500
(23)
 65,745%
309
(22)
 65,957%
310
(22)
 67,660%
318
(20)
 66.298%
1558
 22 Borja Carrascosa Martinez 
SPAIN
  Famous Boy 2
W / Old / B / 1997 / Feiner Stern / Landadel / GER40762 / B: Hof Kasselmann KG,  / Z: Cornelius,Leenert
 65,106%
306
(24)
 67,872%
319
(19)
 65,745%
309
(22)
 66,277%
311.500
(21)
 64,681%
304
(25)
 65.936%
1549.5
 23 Mary Hanna 
AUSTRALIA
  Umbro
W / KWPN / B / 2001 / / 102VL48 / B: Hanna,Mary & Rob
 65,319%
307
(23)
 65,851%
309.500
(22)
 65,851%
309.500
(21)
 66,383%
312
(20)
 65,213%
306.500
(22)
 65.723%
1544.5
 24 Judy Harvey 
GREAT BRITAIN
  Fitzcerraldo
W / BRDBG / BAY / 1998 / Feuerbrand / Ajan / GBR13111 / B: Mr R Heley
 66,170%
311
(22)
 65,106%
306
(24)
 65,213%
306.500
(24)
 65,106%
306
(24)
 65,213%
306.500
(22)
 65.362%
1536
 25 Grete Barake 
ESTONIA
  O. Hot Chocolate
W / KWPN / F / 1996 / Indiaan / EST00130 / B: Barake,Family
 64,574%
303.500
(25)
 64,681%
304
(25)
 64,681%
304
(25)
 64,894%
305
(25)
 65,000%
305.500
(24)
 64.766%
1522
 26 Jonas Elvebakk 
NORWAY
  Cartier 116
H / DK / B / 2001 / / NOR40397 / B: Elvebakk,Jonas
 64,362%
302.500
(26)
 63,723%
299.500
(26)
 62,872%
295.500
(26)
 62,979%
296
(27)
 64,362%
302.500
(26)
 63.660%
1496
 27 Hayley Beresford 
RFV Vellinghausen e.V.
  Simba G
H / Holst / B / 2000 / Falkland Victory / / AUS41076 / B: Harrison,Elaine
 62,128%
292
(27)
 62,872%
295.500
(28)
 61,596%
289.500
(28)
 62,553%
294
(28)
 62,872%
295.500
(27)
 62.404%
1466.5
 28 Esther Scholte Albers 
RC Heidgesberg-Mönchengladbach e.V
  Nasty Boy 7
W / KWPN / DB / 1995 / May Sherif / Cocktail / NED07848 / B: Fleury, E.P.M.  / Z: Merx van Eijkelenburg, J.
 61,064%
287
(29)
 63,511%
298.500
(27)
 62,021%
291.500
(27)
 63,298%
297.500
(26)
 61,702%
290
(29)
 62.319%
1464.5
 29 Nicole Smith 
REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
  Victoria 78
S / BWP / 1998 / / 102OC46 / B: Smith,Nicole
 61,383%
288.500
(28)
 61,489%
289
(29)
 60,532%
284.500
(29)
 61,596%
289.500
(29)
 62,553%
294
(28)
 61.511%
1445.5