Russia’s Inessa Merkulova & Mister X Capture Nizhniy Novgorod World Cup Freestyle

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Hanna Karasiova on Zodiak moves to top of World Cup Central European League standings. © 2018 Ken Braddick/

NIZHNIY NOVGOROD, Russia, June 10, 2018–Russia’s Inessa Merkulova and Mister X won the World Cup Grand Prix Freestyle Sunday while runner-up Hanna Karasiova of Belarus moved to the top of the Central European League standings.

Inessa and the 14-year-old Russian-bred Trakehner gelding scored 78.625 per cent in their first competition since the World Cup in Paris two months ago, that was their fifth annual championship in addition to the 2016 Olympics and the 2014 World Equestrian Games in Normandy.

Hanna Karasiova of Belarus on Zodiak, a 10-year-old Latvian Warmblood gelding that also competed at the Paris final, placed second on 74.375 per cent

The result put the pair at the top of the region’s standings with a total of 37 points earned at two events and ahead of compatriot Volha Ihumentsava on Ed Khardy.

Hanna Karaseva of Belarus on Arlekino was third on 71.275 per cent.

Central Europe is allocated two slots at the World Cup Final that is scheduled for Gothenburg, Sweden in April 2019.


CDI-W Grand Prix Freestyle

Rider Nat. Horse Score Place
Inessa Merkulova RUS Mister X 78.625% 1.
Hanna Karasiova BLR Zodiak 74.375% 2.
Hanna Karaseva BLR Arlekino 71.275% 3.
Olga Safronova BLR Sandro D Amour 70.500% 4.
Stanislav Cherednichenko RUS Arums 69.100% 5.
Olga Kovyrzina RUS Markus 68.825% 6.
Veronika  Yarashevich BLR Bolivar 68.200% 7.
Volha Ihumentsava BLR Ed Khardi 66.925% 8.
Nadejda Voronina RUS DJO Black 66.000% 9.
Katsiaryna Yafremava BLR Bolivar 65.775% 10.
Natalia Sinilnikova RUS Hawk’s Flight 64.775% 11.
Natalia Shadrina RUS Rubi Brunsvon Rubinstein 62.300% 12.
Ala Nikanorava BLR Vaksayd 61.225% 13.
Natalia Fominych RUS Vzmah Elim.