Photo: Isabell Werth and Weihegold
With Beezie Madden in the saddle, Breitling LS (Quintero - Armonia La Silla x Acord II) has won the 2018 World Cup Final in Paris in superb style. But, she knew she’d been in a fight, having faulted for the first time in the second round of the final, the first time this duo had put a foot wrong over three days of competition. “When I had that rail down I was a little nervous, but I still felt my horse was humping well and I knew I had to pull it together to try to get it done.” It was a second World Cup victory for Madden, who also won in 2013. On this occasion, she had a relatively unknown Devin Ryan – a fellow American – nipping at her heels riding Eddie Blue, a son of the great stallion Zirocco Blue. and the youngest horse in the competition at the age of nine. For the second year in a row, Sweden’s Henrik von Eckermann had to settle for third place following a mistake with Tovek’s Mary Lou in the closing moments that denied him a jump-off against Madden. (Photo to follow).
Yesterday, lighting up the dressage arena, Isabell Werth and Weihegold scored a back-to-back victory in the FEI World Cup dressaga final having fought an extraordinary battle against Laura Graves and Verdades. Taking the competition to the wire, two dressage titans pulled out all the stops, with Graves first posting a massive 89.082, only to be eclipsed by Werth mustering all her skill and experience to score 90.657. According to a delighted Werth: “To have experience is an advantage if you use it in the right way. […] After a lot of years in the sport, you know how many things can happen, how things can change very quickly. It gives you the confidence to go in the ring and to try your best. […] This was just a great day today.”