By Claartje van Andel
On the same third weekend of September both in Ermelo, the Netherlands and Balve, Germany, the respectrive national dressage championships took place, and saw Edward Gal with a stallion, Glock’s Toto Jr, and Isabell Werth riding her mare, Weihegold, reign supreme.
While in Balve a number of mares were a force that produced amazing results, with Weihegold (Blue Hors Don Schufro x Sandro Hit, bred by Inge Bastian) dancing Isabell Werth to her 16th German Masters title, in Ermelo it was the stallions that represented the highest honours, with Glock’s Toto Jr handing the Dutch title to Gal.
In fact, in Ermelo, Glock’s Toto Jr (Totilas x Desperados x Rotspon, bred by Judith and Sönke Schmidt) competing for only the third time at the highest Grand Prix level, put a spell on the small audience as well as the judges. Likewise, on his rider Edward Gal, who was able to celebrate his 11th Dutch Masters win with a very emotional ride, bringing back the fairytale dressage moments of his sire Totilas when he first entered the dressage scene.
Power, athleticism, a sort of magical aura, it all seemed like Totilas within his only nine-year-old son, who had already received nines for his extended canter, passage, and transitions. An emotional Edward Gal said: “It is exactly 10 years ago today that I rode this freestyle to music composed by Joost Peters with Totilas in Kentucky. And I never thought I would ride it once again. But today I sat on his son and it was simply incredible. I felt my own tears coming up and I was really overwhelmed by everything. Toto has nearly the same behaviour – so smart and cuddly, and he really looks very similar to his father in everything. With his lack of experience today he was even better than yesterday in the Grand Prix. This is so promising.”
Gal ended on the highest place on the podium, thanking his trainer, Nicole, partner Hans Peter, his Glock team and, of course, all his fans. “You went along with me through ups and downs, really happy and really sad moments. Today we are sharing a really special and really wonderful moment. Thank you.”.. To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber
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