World Cup Final Decided Saturday With Freestyle–Red Flowers Or Not

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The World Cup of Dressage to be decided Saturday. © 2013 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
The World Cup of Dressage to be decided Saturday. © 2013 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

GOTHENBURG, Sweden, April 26–The World Cup Final Grand Prix Freestyle on Saturday will go down to the last combination of Adelinde Cornelissen and Jerich Parzival seeking to become only the second rider in the 28 years of the annual global championship to win three straight titles.

Canada’s Jaimey Irwin on Lindor’s Finest will be the first of 17 combinations to start the competition at 1.30 p.m. Central European Time (7:30 a.m. U.S. Eastern Time) at the Scandinavium Arena whose 12,000 seats have long been sold out.

Adelinde and the 16-year-old KWPN gelding (Jazz x Fidora x Ulft) finished fourth in the Grand Prix when Parzival balked in the piaffe and spun around twice in center ring but that counts for nothing because everyone starts with a clean sheet and Adelinde’s focus when it counts has never been in question.

Helen Langehanenberg on Damon Hill NRW, runnerup to the Netherlands’ pair at last year’s final, is in top form and has shown it repeatedly since finishing fourth at last summer’s Olympic Games in London, right behind Adelinde and Parzival who took individual bronze.

The rapid improvements made by Glock’s Undercover in the year of training and competing under Edward Gal, homeland favorite Tinne Vilhelmsson-Silfvén and Don Auriello and Isabell Werth, the world’s must medaled dressage rider, and the more confident Don Johnson make them all potential victors in one of the most open championships in recent memory.

Only Anky van Grunsven, the undisputed Queen of the Freestyle, has ever won three straight World Cup titles, and she did it twice, plus holding aloft the cup on another three occasions for a total of nine World Cup championships.

Adelinde’s first world title came at the World Cup at Lepzig, Germany in 2011, though she has won gold at the Europeans and won silver with Parzival at the London Games.

The formal protest over red flowers replacing green ferns atop the arena letters between a schooling session and the actual competition has turned into a global belly laugh, to go by the reaction in social media.

The protest filed by Sweden’s Patrik Kittel was dismissed “in its entirety,” but the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) which owns the event issued a news release that was more than a page of single spaced description of the protest and the hearing.

Many Swedes expressed disappointment that the protest by a Swedish rider overshadowed the performance by Tinne and Don Auriello to place third in the Grand Prix behind Helen and Damon Hill and Edward and Undercover.

Patrik Kittel on Watermill Scandic and the red flowers that led to a formal protest. © 2013 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Patrik Kittel on Watermill Scandic and the red flowers that led to a formal protest. © 2013 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

The starting lineup for the Freestyle:

Start no Time Rider Horse
(1) 13:20 Lindor’s Finest Eastern Ruler Sylvia Carlton & Ute Busse
(2) 13:30 Miciano Medici – Dialekt J.M.J. van Baalen-Dorresteyn, J. Hinnema
(3) 13:40 Pro-Set Jetset-D – Flemmingh AJ TAS, BERKEL EN RODENRIJS, NED Elisif Sommechield, Gustav Jebsen
(4) 13:50 Smeyers Molberg Michellino – Rambo Irene Meyer, Marcela Krinke Susmelj
(5) 14:00 Vian Stallone LANCET – Symfonie LLC VIAN GROUP
(6) 14:10 D Niro D-Day – Napoleon 625 Mary Brooks – Brookhaven Dressage Inc
(7) 14:20 Khorovod Khodar Mr.Repkin Viktor
(8) 14:30 Schianto Gribaldi – Schwadroneur Jorgen Rosbog
(9) 14:40 Fixdesign Eremo del Castegno Rohdiamant – Weltmeyer Centro Equestre Monferrato
Pause 10 minutes
(10) 15:00 Santana Sandro Hit – Rubinstein I Ingo Pape Minna Telde AB / Berit Telde
(11) 15:10 Donnperignon Donnerhall – Mozart II79 Rasanen,Pekka Kasprzak Family
(12) 15:20 Watermill Scandic H.B.C Solos Carex – Amiral De Watermolen Fam Greve, Fam Sjep Patrik Kittel
(13) 15:30 Don Johnson FRH Don Frederico – Warkant Meyer,Ulrike Madeleine Winter-Schulze
(14) 15:40 Damon Hill NRW Donnerhall – Rubinstein I Sauer,Heinrich Christian Becks
(15) 15:50 Don Auriello Don Davidoff – White Star Lövsta Stuteri / Antonia Ax:son Johnson
(16) 16:00 Glock’s Undercover Ferro – Donnerhall Ghpc Holding Bv
(17) 16:10 Jerich Parzival Jazz – Ulft W.P.J. Cornelissen / M.A. Cornelissen