News and results from the European and Open Para Equestrian Championship from the Epona Riding Center in Norway
European and Open Para Equestrian Championship - Day 1
The first day of competitions at The European and Open Para Equestrian Championship went especially well for three British and two German riders placing the Brits in the lead.
A thunderstorm rolled over yesterdays Opening Ceremony at Epona Riding Center in Norway, leaving everything soaking wet. Even so the Dressage arena was in super condition today.
It is great footing here which is impressive considering how much it rained yesterday, said the first winner at the championships, Angelika Trabert (GER). Dr. Trabert who is born without legs and with only three fingers on her right hand, was very satisfied with her horse. - In the Paralympics in Hong Kong Londria was very nervous, so I'm pleased with how she was today. She was very calm and relaxed, but she didn't like one corner of the arena where people walked on the road behind. Unfortunately the first extended trot went towards that corner. But she paid attention and kept focused on me. Which is important because if she gets distracted she wont notice my aids, explained Angelica "Geli" Trabert
Not many para equestrian Dressage events are held without the British National Anthem being played, and today was no exception.
A lot of the British success is a result of good backup and funding in the UK like the development pathway to bring up young talented riders, explained the winner of the Grade IV section, Sophie Wells. At only 19 it seems as Sophie will established her self amongst the worlds best riders and naturally she is hoping for another victory tomorrow, but as she emphasizes: One can neither control the horse nor the judges one hundred percent.
Winners 21/9 :
Grade Ia - Sophie Christiansen (GBR) Lambrusco III 72,118 %
Grade Ib - Lee Pearson (GBR) Gentleman 73,765 %
Grade II - Angelica Trabert (GER) Londria 70,476 %
Grade III - Hannelore Brenner (GER) Women of the World 73,538 %
Grade IV - Sophie Wells (GBR) - Pinocchio 71,714 %
European and Open Para Equestrian Championship - Day 2
Gold to the British Team
The British para-equestrian team is regarded as the best in the world and they still are, but they got competition from the German team today. Next time, concluded German Angelica Trabert. The bronze medal went to the Netherlands.
Sophie Christiansen defended her gold medal from 2005. I was so nervous I couldn't sleep last night but Lambrusco III was brilliant today. I improved what the judges criticized yesterday and it paid off, said Sophie who got today's highest score, 74,200 %.
Tomorrow the riders will do the freestyle. I love freestyle to music. I can do more complicated things, said the young gold medalist
Hannelore Brenner got the highest score of the German riders. I am very satisfied but there is still some room for improvement in my forward riding. We have written a difficult freestyle for tomorrow, and I hope we have a chance to show what we can do, said Hannelore Brenner, bearing in mind her mare with the catchy name "Woman of the World" does not always likes to be indoors where the freestyle will be.
Grade Ia Sophie Christiansen (GBR) Lambrusco III 74,200 %
Grade Ib Lee Pearson (GBR) Gentleman 72,667 %
Grade II Petra van der Sande (NED) Toscane 72,364 %
Grade III Hannelore Brenner (GER) Women of the World 73,520 %
Grade IV Sophie Wells (GBR) Pinoccio 72,000 %
1 Great Britain 218,715 %
2 Germany 217,118 %
3 Netherlands 204,456 %
European and Open Para Equestrian Championship - Day 3
European and Open Para Equestrian Championship - Epona, Kristiansand, 23/9
Medal showers over Great Britain and Germany in the FEI European Freestyle Championship
The final day of FEI European & Open Para Equestrian Championship had Freestyle to music on the program. Some of the classes where ridden inside the indoor arena but all the other riders and spectators was blessed with nice weather at Epona Riding Center, Kristiansand, Norway.
Great Britain had another great day capturing three gold medals, whilst Germany took the last two.
Making sure the right Brits, are in the right place, with the right horse at any time is performance manager for the British team, David Hunter. He explains the reasons for some of their success: -If you're going to be successful as a team you've got to be knit together. We are lucky in England to have a system. Through The national lottery we have a funding towards the paralympic sports. We've had two new riders, Sophie Wells and Emma Sheardown, both two have come through a system of younger riders and being trained up. It's really rewarding to see them go to the podium. Emma Sheardown has been working with this for 6 years and it's her first major international show. We've had an extremely successful and great European Championship. We have never won as many medals at a major international championship before.
Sophie Wells cashed inn three gold medals during the European Para Equestrian Championship in addition to the IF youth Challenge and also the prize for having the highest total score after three days.
Lee Pearson also took home three gold medals. -I've had an extremely successful competition, not so pleased with my horse the first day when I thought the judges were very kind. In the Championship tests yesterday they judged him a little bit low. Today the rider was good and the horse was good and the judges were good! Everything was right today; we just needed three days to get everything right.
Angelika Trabert took her first gold medal in an individual test -It's been my best championship ever so I'm very happy.
Hannelore Brenner and Women of the World got the highest total score today with 76,889 % - I am really satisfied. It was my dream. It is a wonderful feeling to ride my horse when she fights with me. She doesn't always like the indoor arena but the music wasn't to loud. I have things that are not perfect and needs improving but its not important for this grade. It's been a wonderful show. Well organized and very friendly. We are at home here, said the German rider who has been in the top for ten years now.
Grade Ia: Emma Sheardown (GBR) Purdy's Dream 75,500 %
Grade Ib: Lee Pearson (GBR) Gentleman 76,722 %
Grade II: Angelika Trabert (GER) Londria 74,000 %
Grade III: Hannelore Brenner (GER) Women of the World 76,889 %
Grad IV: Sophie Wells (GBR) Pinocchio 73,636 %
All results can be found here: www.paraem2009.no/publisher/publisher.aspid=88
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