LB Con­vall leaps the wa­ter fence un­der Philipp Weishaupt

Philipp Weishaupt’s classy stal­lion brushes off los­ing a shoe in the warmup to land the grand prix, and Beezie Mad­den spear­heads the vic­to­ri­ous Amer­i­can team

Horse & Hound - - Contents - By CATHER­INE AUSTEN

PHILIPP WEISHAUPT won the ex­cep­tion­ally valu­able CP In­ter­na­tional grand prix, sup­ported by Rolex, with the only dou­ble clear of the class.

The ge­nial Ger­man 32-yearold, who col­lected showjump­ing’s rich­est prize of $1mil­lion (£625,000) for his vic­tory, was rid­ing the grey 10-year-old stal­lion LB Con­vall, on whom he won the Rolex Grand Prix in Aachen in 2016.

“To be dou­ble clear here is re­ally spe­cial — there’s noth­ing tougher than this,” said Philipp. “Con­vall was out­stand­ing. He makes my job so easy, and it’s so much fun to ride him that you wouldn’t be­lieve it.

“He has plenty of char­ac­ter — he needs to know I am the boss, but he is such a cool horse.”

There were eight clears from the 42 starters in the first round. Course-de­signer Leopoldo Pala­cios Jugo pro­duced a huge, var­ied track with fences up to 1.68m, and the fi­nal line of an enor­mous tre­ble to an up­right caught out many of the favourites, in­clud­ing Scott Brash, win­ner of this class in 2015 and 2016, with Ur­sula XII on what might be the mare’s fi­nal ap­pear­ance.

Twelve riders went on to the sec­ond round — the fastest four­fault­ers go­ing first. Num­ber one off the blocks was Eric La­maze, and he punched in a de­ter­mined clear with one time-fault on

Fine Lady 5. But af­ter him the rails came crash­ing down with reg­u­lar­ity. Un­til Philipp’s round, it looked as though it might be won with four faults.

LB Con­vall lost a shoe in the warm-up for this round, so ac­tu­ally jumped a few horses later than he was drawn — and Philipp ad­mit­ted he ben­e­fit­ted from McLain Ward, who dropped the mid­dle pole of the tre­ble on HH Azur, ad­vis­ing him to hold for an ex­tra stride.

LB Con­vall clonked the third fence, tall rails with a wa­ter ditch be­hind, hard — and then as Philipp checked him go­ing into that trou­ble­some tre­ble, he vir­tu­ally halted a stride out.

The Hol­steiner has such power and ath­leti­cism, how­ever, that he pinged through as though on elas­tic. They soared over the fi­nal fence, a 1.70m oxer, with air to spare.

Last to go was Por­tu­gal’s Lu­ciana Diniz with the ele­gant ch­est­nut mare Fit For Fun 13, who had proved she was on top form by win­ning the first in­ter­na­tional class of the week on Wed­nes­day. It was theirs to lose and the mare flew round un­til the very last fence, where Lu­ciana de­cided to go on four rather than five strides from the in­fa­mous penul­ti­mate “bi­cy­cle” jump, and Fit For Fun 13, tipped the top of the oxer.

“It was com­pletely my fault — I changed my plan,” said Lu­ciana. “But this was meant to be Philipp’s day, and I couldn’t be more thrilled with my horse.”

McLain Ward had to set­tle for third. HH Azur isn’t re­ally suited to the unique de­mands of Leopoldo’s grand prix track, which is com­pletely dif­fer­ent in look and feel to most mod­ern Euro­pean cour­ses, and the Amer­i­can rider said wryly: “Leopoldo crunches you with the time, then makes the dis­tances short.”

In an­swer, the course-de­signer said: “It’s a fine line when you play with the horses’ lim­its, but they all stepped up beau­ti­fully to­day.”

Af­ter col­lect­ing the sec­ond Ma­jor vic­tory of his ca­reer

Philipp will head to CHI Geneva in De­cem­ber on his quest for the Rolex Grand Slam of Showjump­ing and the €1mil­lion (£910,750) bonus for the rider claim­ing three Ma­jors in a row.

MAD­DEN LEADS USA TO NA­TIONS CUP VIC­TORY

AMER­ICA’S queen of showjump­ing, Beezie Mad­den, clinched the win for the USA in the BMO Na­tions Cup. It came down to a nail-bit­ing jump-off be­tween Beezie and Brazil’s Pe­dro Jun­quiera Muy­laert af­ter both teams fin­ished on eight faults.

Vic­tory for Brazil, who won the Hick­stead Na­tions Cup, would have been a fairy­tale, as their first rider, Ed­uardo Menezes, had fallen off Quin­tol in the first round and was car­ried off in an am­bu­lance. He re­fused med­i­cal at­ten­tion and wanted to jump in the sec­ond round, but “con­cus­sion pro­to­cols” pre­vented him.

His three team-mates — Pe­dro Jun­queira Muy­laert (Prince Royal Z MFS), Yuri Mansur Gue­rios (Baby­lotte) and Pe­dro Veniss (Quabri De L’Isle) rose to the oc­ca­sion and all jumped clear to whoops from the ex­citable Spruce Mead­ows crowd. But the USA, who had fin­ished on eight faults af­ter round one, with only Beezie jump­ing clean, pegged them back when Lauren Hough (Water­ford) and Char­lie Ja­cobs (Cass­inja S) were fault­less. A sec­ond clear from Beezie and Darry Lou meant that Pe­dro Veniss had to go clear to win, but he flicked the back rail of the oxer at 11a, ig­nit­ing a jump-off.

Beezie went first. She has only had the nine-year-old Darry Lou since April — he was pre­vi­ously rid­den by Mex­ico’s Al­berto Al­dana — but all three of her rounds were glo­ri­ous to watch. The pony-ish ch­est­nut with a white blaze lopes round in a per­fect rhythm and Beezie never needs to waste time in set­ting him up for a fence.

They didn’t look that quick, but they were foot-per­fect with neat, sparse turns. Prince Royal Z MFS

is a racier ride and the Brazil­ian pair set off at light­ning speed, but looked to slow down to se­cure the clear, think­ing they had done enough. But in fact they were half a sec­ond slower and Team USA fol­lowed up their Dublin win with Spruce Mead­ows tri­umph.

“I’m pretty sure that’s ac­tu­ally the first jump-off I’ve ever done on him, ex­cept maybe in a 1.30m class where I prac­tised go­ing fast one time,” said Beezie. “This was the first time I ac­tu­ally tried to go fast over big fences with him, so I’m so happy with him.

“I think my horse could prob­a­bly be beaten on speed on the big gal­lops. I maybe could have done one or to fewer strides to some of the fences. But I think my plan, go­ing first, was to put in a re­ally solid round that they had to go a lit­tle to beat us, and it worked. I left the door open a bit but I also made Pe­dro go a lit­tle, too, and that was the goal.”

Ger­many fin­ished third.

Three of their riders — Philipp Weishaupt, Hol­ger Wulschner and Pa­trick Stuhlmeyer — jumped clear in the first round, but Philipp’s Soli­taer 41 slammed on the brakes at the open wa­ter in the sec­ond round, and the other two had four faults. Marco Kutscher had one down in the first round, and although Clenur posted a lovely clear in the sec­ond, the team com­pleted on nine faults, ahead of the home side, Canada. A no­table ab­sen­tee in this an­nual team com­pe­ti­tion was Great Bri­tain, see box (p97).

BREAK­ING DUCKS

BOTH Bel­gium’s Ni­cola Philip­paerts and Por­tu­gal’s Lu­ciana Diniz scored their first Spruce Mead­ows Mas­ters vic­to­ries at this year’s tour­na­ment.

Ni­cola won the $130,000 (£81,000) 1.60m CANA Cup on the lovely grey 10-year-old H&M Har­ley VD Biss­chop.

He said: “There were quite a few fast riders in the jump-off and Steve [Guer­dat] had al­ready gone re­ally fast, but my horse is quick and has a big stride, so

I tried to go as fast as pos­si­ble with­out tak­ing too many risks.

“He is a very sen­si­tive horse with a lot of blood so it is mostly about keep­ing him calm and giv­ing him con­fi­dence in the ring.”

Lu­ciana and Fit For Fun 13 took the first in­ter­na­tional class, the 1.50m Telus Cup, ahead of Eric La­maze and Chacco Kid. Eric, Canada’s 2008 Olympic gold medal­list, is greeted with cheers ev­ery time he jumps a fence here, and he was placed in most of the big classes with the son of Chacco Blue. Chacco Kid was run­ner-up in the 1.50m ATCO Founders’ Clas­sic to Ire­land’s Conor Swail, who won on GK Coco Chanel de­spite hav­ing fallen off at the fi­nal fence in the jump-off on his first horse, Flower.

Chacco Kid was also third in Satur­day’s 1.50m SUN­COR win­ning round class be­hind the USA’s McLain Ward and HH Car­los Z.

An­other US pair, Kent Far­ring­ton and Gazelle, won the $216,400 (£135,000) Friends of the Mead­ows Cup with a jump-off round that was a master­class of cal­cu­la­tion and pre­ci­sion. In this class fence seven, a nar­row up­right of brown poles jumped to­wards the stands, caused fault af­ter fault, in­clud­ing for Scott Brash and Hello For­ever.

‘There’s noth­ing tougher than this’: Ger­many’s Philipp Weishaupt and LB Con­vall cel­e­brate jump­ing the only dou­ble clear to land the CP In­ter­na­tional grand prix, sup­ported by Rolex The Mas­ters, Spruce Mead­ows, Calgary

Grand prix sec­ond Lu­ciana Diniz and Fit For Fun 13 win the Telus Cup

The USA’s McLain Ward and HH Car­los Z top the 1.50m SUN­COR class

Conor Swail (GK Coco Chanel) wins the 1.50m ATCO Founders’ Clas­sic

Edited by Jennifer Don­ald jennifer.don­ald@timeinc.com

@don­ald­j­don­ald

Ni­cola Philip­paerts scores in the 1.60m CANA CUP on H&M Har­ley VD Biss­chop

Beezie Mad­den leads Amer­ica to Na­tions Cup suc­cess on the pony-like Darry Lou

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