Denmark’s Lisbeth Seierskilde & Her Home-Bred Raneur Win Rotterdam CDIO5* Grand Prix Special
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By KENNETH J. BRADDICK
ROTTERDAM, Netherlands, June 21–Lisbeth Seierskilde and Jonstrupgårdens Raneur, the horse that was bred by her parents, won the CDIO5* Grand Prix Special Friday to post the first ever international victory for the pair that competed in last summer’s Olympic Games as an individual for Denmark.
The 27-year-old rider who has just completed her masters degree in human resource management in Copenhagen and is weighing her future plans, scored 70.188 per cent on Raneur in the competition that was held in dreary rain and cold a day after the Nations Cup in which Denmark placed fourth.
Johanna von Fircks of Germany on Nymphenburg Rockport was second on 68.896 per cent with Belgium’s Delphine Meiresonne and Wipsy v. Heihof tied with Marc Boblet of France on Noble Dream Concept Sol for third on 68.396 per cent.
Mikala Gundersen, the Wellington, Florida-based Danish team rider, and My Lady placed sixth on 67.104 per cent.
Lisbeth said she thought the ride in both the Grand Prix for the Nations Cup and in the Special were “quite good.”
“Today I was riding with more power,” she said, “taking more risks. It was much better and I didn’t make a big mistake like I did in the one-tempis in the Grand Prix.
“He is much more relaxed this year. I’m sure that in the future I can get even more from him.”
Raneur, a Danish Warmblood gelding (Ragazzo x Schwadroneur), was bred by Lisbeth’s parents who operate a large riding school in Denmark and breed horses on the side. She has been riding him since he was three years old. He is now aged 14.
Her passion is taking young horses and developing them as far as possible. Raneur is the first she has taken to the top level and jokingly points out that both she and the horse were “home bred.”
“The happiest day of my life,” she told dressage-news.com of Raneur, “was the day I did my first Grand Prix.”
She has competed the horse at Grand Prix for two years, building an impressive resume–as a member of the Danish team at the European Championships at these same show grounds in 2011 and then the Olympics last summer.
The pair were invited to the World Dressage Masters CDI5* in Florida last January but on their way Lisbeth became sick with a stomach virus and could not make the trip.
However, she was one of a small number of Europeans invited to the first CHI in the Middle East that was held in Qatar last winter.
This year she describes in a single expression: “Phew!” a period free of the pressure of 2012 when she was completing her masters degree at the same time as undergoing the rigorous qualifying and competition schedule for the Olympics in London.
Her mother is her regular trainer, but the Danish team coach, Rudolf Zeillinger, schedules monthly coaching sessions.
Although she has been successful, Lisbeth thinks it unlikely she will be on the Danish team at the European Championships in Herning in her homeland in August because the nation has “so many good riders it will be really hard to make the squad this year.
“The competition is hot,” she said, “and that’s good because it makes us all better and that is good for dressage.”
Lisbeth is taking the summer to decide whether she wants to pursue an equestrian career or split her time between riding and a regular job.
Several younger horses with good breeding credentials are coming behind Raneur including one ready for Prix St. Georges–all home bred.
“What I really think is fascinating is to educate a horse and follow through all the way to Grand Prix,” she said.
“The whole education and learning how you have to ride, that’s what really keeps me going.
“Then when you get days like this it makes it all worthwhile.”