Update – Spain’s Youth & Experience Top Compiègne CDI3* Grand Prix & Special

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Spain's Morgan Barbançon and Painted Black. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

COMPIÈGNE, France, June 2–Two of Spain’s top combinations, the 20-year-old Morgan Barbançon Mestres on Painted Black and the Olympic veteran Beatriz Ferrer-Salat on Delgado, on Saturday posted personal best results to top the International CDI3* Grand Prix. The Grand Prix was held over two days to accommodate 42 combinations from 16 nations, many vying to be at the Olympics in two months.

The Spanish combinations switched places in the Olympic Grand Prix Special Sunday, with Beatriz and Delgado finishing first on 73.045 per cent and Morgan and Painted Black second on 72.867 per cent.

Morgan and the 15-year-old KWPN stallion (Gribaldi x Litchy x Ferro) that was trained and competed by Anky van Grunsven who also coaches the Spanish rider, scored 75.532 per cent, eclipsing the score of 75.340 per cent the pair received at Saumur in April. The event this week was only the fourth CDI since the pair began showing on the senior circuit at the beginning of this year and following a short but successful Under-25 campaign.

The 46-year-old Olympic and world championship veteran, Beatriz-Ferrer-Salat placed second with a personal best in the Grand Prix of 74.106 per cent on Delgado, her top horse which returned to international competition in March after an absence of almost two years with an injury.

Spain has qualified a team for the London Games where the dressage begins in exactly two months. The Grand Prix and the Olympic Grand Prix Special will decide the team medals at Greenwich Park.

Belgium’s Claudia Fassaert and Donnerfee placed third on 70.936 per cent.

Lyndal Oatley and her Sandro Boy was the highest finishing Australian and fourth place overall with a personal best of 70.894 per cent in the second of two of her nation’s Olympic nomination trials, and finished third in Sunday’s Grand Prix Special on another personal best of 71.556 per cent. The German-based Aussie also was the top Aussie the Grand Prix on her family’s Sandro Boy in the first trial at Mannheim, Germany, a month ago. (see separate story)

Great Britain’s Michael Eilberg and Half Moon D’Elfy were fifth on 70.106 per cent while the German-based USA rider Dennis Callin and D’accord were sixth on 69.276 per cent.

New Zealand’s Vanessa Way and KH Arvan scored 63.468 per cent to fall short of their country’s requirement to qualify for London. New Zealand qualified their first ever Olympic dressage team but has given up one of the three places when a potential Olympic mount was retired, leaving only two possible entries. Louisa Hill on Bates Antonello is the only pair to have qualified so far.

Results of the Grand Prix: Grand Prix Scores

Results of the Olympic Grand Prix Special: Olympic Grand Prix Special