Russia’s 2 Olympic Pairs Take Central Europe Lead for Omaha World Cup Final
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MOSCOW, Sept. 4, 2016–Inessa Merkulova on Mister X and Marina Aframeeva on Vosk, who competed for Russia at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, on Sunday took the lead in the World Cup Central European League for the two places at the Final in Omaha in March.
Inessa and the 12-year-old Russian-bred Trakehner gelding scored 79.600 per cent in the Grand Prix Freestyle to earn the maximum of 20 points to move to the top of the Central European League standings with 60 points with just three of the 12 qualifying events remaining for the two places allocated for the geographic region.
Marina and the 11-year-old Hanoverian gelding, also Russian-born, scored 74.180 per cent for second to pick up 17 points to give the pair total of 47 to climb three places into second on the standings.
Both combinations, who also finished one-two in the Grand Prix Saturday, competed on Russian teams at the 2014 World Games and last year’s European Championships as well as the at the Olympics as individuals as Russia did not qualify a team.
Inessa and Mister X, ranked No. 8 in the world, have also competed in the last three World Cup Finals, the annual individual global championship decided by the Freestyle, including the 2015 championship in Las Vegas.
Hanna Karasiova of Belarus on Zodiak won the CDI3* Grand Prix Special on 67.353 per cent.