Britain’s Nation Cup quartet posted a fantastic second place finish in a very close –run competition at the final leg of the FEI Eventing Nations Cup series, held in Boekelo, Netherlands (9-12 September). This placing also meant that they clinched runner-up spot overall in the series, just four points behind the series champions Germany.
The top three teams at Boekelo scored:
1 New Zealand, 177.2
2 Great Britain, 178.8
3 Netherlands, 197.5
Emilie Chandler with Sally Williams and Nicola Dickson’s Coopers Law were the best placed of the British team combinations. An impressive cross country round meant they added just 2.40 time penalties to their dressage score, climbing 24 places to sit in 11th place where they eventually finished, despite rolling a pole in the final phase.
Gemma Tattersall gave her own and her mother’s relatively inexperienced Dinky Inky a great ride cross-country, posting a fault-free round with just 11.60 time penalties to add. A superb clear round over the coloured poles meant she was the next best-placed team rider, finishing in 14th place.
Laura Collett riding Diana Chappell’s Grand Manoevre and Sarah Bullimore riding her own and Brett Bullimore’s Lilly Corinne also finished inside the top 20, in 17th and 18th place respectively.
Supported by the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme, Team Manager Philip Surl commented; “To finish second at Boekelo in the final leg was pleasing if a little frustrating as the overall scores were so close. There were 10 nations competing here with several very good combinations which meant it was a strong field – to head the field after the dressage was a massive achievement. The four team members performed well across country and to go into the final phase with three teams within one mark of each other made for a very tense final phase.
“Although the team did exceptionally well to finish second overall in the series, it was disappointing to not retain the title. Thanks to funding from the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme we remain fully committed to the series which is proving to be of so much benefit to the up and coming squad of riders involved in it; everyone has performed well over the whole of the series which is very promising for the future.”
Beyond the Nations Cup success, there was also further individual British triumph with Georgie Strang and Jenny Newton’s Cooley Business Time having a fantastic weekend of competition, adding just 3.20 time penalties across the country to her dressage score to climb 15 places to finish in third place. Two other top 10 finishers included Nicola Wilson aboard James and Jo Lambert’s Watermill Vision who finished fifth, while Tina Cook and Star Witness (owned by Jim Chromiak, Bridget Biddlecombe, Shaun Lawson, Nicolas and Valda Embiricos) completed in eighth.
FEI Nations Cup Eventing Final Leaderboard (after all 9 events)
1 Germany 67 points
2 Great Britain 63
3 France 55
4 New Zealand 29
5 Ireland 28
6 Netherlands 28
7 Italy 24
8 Denmark 14
9 Sweden 13
10 Australia 11
11 Belgium 7
12 Spain 6
13 Poland 5
14 USA 4
15 SUI 0
Image courtesy of www.eventingphoto.com