Sunday, December 19, 2010

Dressage: World Cup: Frankfurt: SALZGEBER REIGNS SUPREME AS GERMANY DOMINATES - by Claartje van Andel

Photo Caption: Gemany's Ulla Salzgeber and Herzruf's Erbe won the fifth leg of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage series in Frankfurt, Germany today.  Photo: Stefan Lafrentz/FEI.
Frankfurt (GER), 19 December 2010

Germany's Ulla Salzgeber and her reliable chestnut Herzruf’s Erbe won the fifth leg of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage series in the festive surroundings of the Frankfurter Festhalle in Frankfurt today. The victory was the more remarkable as Salzgeber had not been able to practice her Freestyle in
a full size arena of 20 by 60 meters before the competition. The German dressage star is in the middle of moving her training facility closer to her yard in order to have more fields surrounding her stable and training centre, so she was delighted with today's result.  German riders filled the top three places and five of the top six slots on their home turf today, Denmark's Princess Nathalie Zu Sayn-Wittgenstein preventing them from achieving a total white-wash when slotting into fourth.

“All the German team colleagues of the WEG were competing here, so I am too proud of this win!” said Salzgeber after a very well-concentrated test in which the trot-work was a particular highlight. Her "Boney M" musical score has been used before with her former dressage super-star, the great Rusty with whom Salzgeber was crowned champion at both the FEI World Cup™ Dressage finals in Aarhus and 's-Hertogenbosch in 2001 and 2002.  The German rider feels it is also very fitting to Herzruf’s Erbe.

Isabell Werth was runner up with her young EL Santo NRW who performed a little too enthusiastically but, with a big smile on her face, the rider blamed herself for that. Yesterday this partnership just missed the Grand Prix win by the merest margin of 0.17%. Werth would not be the fighter she is if she had not allowed herself to take some risks however, and she did! She blamed herself for having asked too much from her only nine year old El Santo. She asked for the two tempi changes too energetically and she lost control as El Santo spooked, which he also did the second time at the same spot. Werth's Freestyle test was accompanied by the wonderful soprano voice of Montserrat.

Both ladies, Salzgeber and Werth, now share the lead in the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Standings after five legs, and have their sights on competing in the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final in Leipzig, Germany next April. Salzgeber will travel to the sixth qualifier in Mechelen next week where she will ride her other chestnut, Wakana. She plans to compete Herzruf’s Erbe, whose nickname is Herzi, at the Final. Werth meanwhile plans to run Warum Nicht in the new year at the qualifier in Amsterdam, The Netherlands while Satchmo will line out in Neumünster. She intends to take Satchmo to Leipzig.

For the judges, the result was open between the top five competitors today. Ground Jury President, Dr Dietrich Plewa, said: “Not only from the technical part, also from the artistic side the first five competitors were close. Any mistake immediately resulted in a lower score which was to the advantage of the other.”

Donnperignon, who with his rider Christoph Koschel surprised with his fluency and talent during the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Kentucky, made a nice start in his trot-work while a mistake in the one-tempi changes was well-corrected and they finished fifth.  Matthias Rath had a well choreographed Freestyle to Tchaikowsky music, but sometimes lacked sympathy with the music, noticeably in the half-passes in canter.  Their mark of 76.550 was still good enough for third place however.  Germany's Koschel and Rath have no plans to compete in the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Final. They both intend to concentrate on the outdoor season, working towards the 2011 European Championships and the Olympic Games in London in 2012.

Lying third on the series table behind joint-leaders Werth and Salzgeber going into the next leg at Mechelen, Belgium next week is America's Catherine Haddad while Great Britain's Richard Davison is in fourth spot ahead of The Netherlands' Adelinde Cornelissen in fifth.  Dutchman Edward Gal does not appear on the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage standings as the defending champion is already pre-qualified for next year's Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final having already fulfilled his only obligation of competing at two qualifying events in the current season.

Today, also at Frankfurt, the fei World Cup™ Dressage Final for Young Riders took place, and the result exactly mirrored those from this year's FEI European Championships at Kronberg with Fabienne Lutkemeier topping the podium ahead of fellow-German Sanneke Rothenberger and Denmark's Anna Kasprzak finishing third.

For further information on the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage leg at Frankfurt, Germany contact Press Officer Niklas Droste at Email or Tel +49 447 394 110.  The next leg takes place in Mechelen, Belgium 26-30 December and for all details on the Belgian fixture go to website or contact Press Officer Edith de Reys at Email or Tel +32 475 659 281.

Result Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage: 1, Herzruf's Erbe (Ulla Salzgeber) GER 78.450; 2, El Santo NRW (Isabell Werth) GER 77.950; 3, Sterntaler Unicef (Matthias Alexander Rath) 76.550; 4, Digby (Nathalie Zu Sayn-Wittgenstein) DEN 76.250; 5, Donnperignon (Christoph Koschel) GER 75.750; 6, Responsible (Helen Langehanenberg) GER 73.650; 7, Blue Hors Romanov (Sune Hansen) DEN S72.050; 8, Corinth (Marcela Krinke-Susmeij) SUI 71.850; 9, Kohlpharmas Florett As (Patrik Kittel) SWE 71.650; 10, Lydianus (Charlotte Haid Bondergaard) SWE 70.950; 11, Lamarc (Sabine Becker) GER 69.850; 12, Rokoko N (Elizabeth Eversfield-Koch) SUI 66.100; 13, Le Beau (Philippe Jorissen) BEL 64.800; 14, Donnerfee (Claudia Fassaert) BEL 64.400; 15. Weinzauber (Robers Acs) HUN 63.750.

Result FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final for Young Riders 2010: 1, d'Agostino (Fabienne Lutkemeier) GER 79.00; 2, Deveraux (Sanneke Rothenberger) GER 78.750; 3, Langkjaergaard's Donna Fetti (Anna Kasprzak) DEN 74.00; 4,  BMC Udento (Danielle van Mierlo) NED 71.55; 5, Sandiebogese (Tahnee Waelkens) BEL 66.55; 6, Gina Tricot Diezel (Sara Bergstrom Kallstrom) SWE 63.950; 7, Bentley (Meagan David) USA 63.600.

Facts and Figures:
This was the second win for Ulla Salzgeber in the 2010/2011 Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage series. She also was the winner of Kaposvar in the Central European League earlier in the season and was runner-up behind Isabell Werth in Lyon.
Five further qualifiers will be staged before the final takes place in Leipzig, Germany from 27 April to 1 May 2011
Six nations competed including Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Sweden and Switzerland
Imke Schellekens-Bartels had to withdraw as her horse Hunter Douglas Sunrise made a mis-step while being lunged earlier this week. Unfortunately the diagnosis of at least six weeks walking in-hand made an early end at the World Cup season for the Dutch partnership who will now also will miss the qualifiers in Mechelen and Amsterdam.
The Ground Jury for today’s competition consisted of : E - Dr.V. Truppa (ITA) H - G. Fouarge (NED) C - Dr.D. Plewa (GER) M - Dr.E. Eisenhardt (GER) B - S. Clarke (GBR)
Due to the poor weather conditions which included snow and fog in Frankfurt, competitors had to limit their speed to 30 miles an hour to drive home after the competition. Some judges were obliged to remain in Frankfurt and the airport was closed. Italy's Vincenzo Truppa was able to travel back by train but British Stephen Clarke remained stranded.
The ‘Golden Reitabzeichen”, a gold plated medal which is earned in Germany after ten wins at the highest level, was rewarded to Denmark's Princess Nathalie zu Sayn Wittgenstein during the Grand Prix prize-giving ceremonies and to 17 year old German Sanneke Rothenberger after the FEI World Cup  Final for Young Riders.
Together with the qualifier of the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ qualifier in Frankfurt, the WC Final for Young Riders was held. The result was an exact copy of the first four places of the European championships for YR in Kronberg this year. Winner Fabienne Lükemeier has now set her sights on competing at Grand Prix level.
American Meagan Davis and her horse, Bentley, arrived in Germany to compete at the FEI Young Rider Dressage World Cup™ Final. Meagan has been awarded a grant from the Dressage Foundation and following the competition she will use the grant to train with Hubertus Schmidt for four to six weeks after the WC Final for YR in which she placed seventh.
The Dressage Foundation, founded in 1989, is proud to offer grants and scholarships to dressage enthusiasts at all levels, from young riders, to adult amateurs, to high performance.

Ulla Salzgeber: “After my win in Kaposvar in the Central European League and the runner-up position in Lyon I’m quite happy with my placement here. I love competing in the World Cup™ and the final is my goal.”
Dutch judge Ghislain Fouarge: “Not only the top field, also the middle group were close to each other. I have enjoyed watching Helen Langehanenberg. I think she is a very elegant rider and she makes dressage riding look very easy. It was a harmonious presentation.”
American YR Meagan Davis: “Dressage training and riding is my passion and will be my career. This is an incredible training opportunity that will further my education and advance my horse Bentley. The knowledge I will gain from this experience at Hubertus Schmidt will also benefit my students, the kids that I coach at Lendon Gray’s Youth Dressage Festival, the Dressage 4 Ponies Clinic riders, as well as the horses I train.”

Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage - Standings after Round 5 at Frankfurt (GER):
1.    Isabell Werth GER                -    57
2.    Ulla Salzgeber GER                -    57
3.    Catherine Haddad USA            -    54
4.    Richard Davison GBR            -    44
5.    Adelinde Cornelissen            -    43
6.    Helen Langehanenberg GER        -    36
7.    Christa Laarakkers NED            -    33
8.    Nathalie zu Sayn-Wittgenstein    DEN -    30
9.    Nina Hoffmann SWE            -    29
9.    Sune Hansen DEN                -    29
11.    Matthias Alexander Rath GER        -    28
12.    Aat Van Essen NED                 -    26
12.    Hans Peter Minderhoud NED        -    26
14.    Ulrike Prunthaller AUT            -    24
15.    Anna Ross-Davies GBR            -    23
15.    Patrik Kittel SWE                -    23
15.    Mikaela Lindh FIN                -    23
18.    Heike Kemmer GER             -    21
18.    Sylvia Zimmer GER                -    21
20.    Anky Van Grunsven NED            -    17
20.    Laura Bechtolsheimer GBR        -    17
20.    Peter Gmoser     AUT                -    17
20.    Sabine Becker GER                -    17

Western European League Calendar 2010/2011:
1        Odense (DEN), 21-24 October
2        Lyon (FRA), 27 October - 1 November
3        Stockholm (SWE), 26-28 November
4        London Olympia (GBR), 14-15 December
5        Frankfurt (GER), 15-19 December
6        Mechelen (BEL), 26-30 December
7        Amsterdam (NED), 20-23 January
8        Neumünster (GER), 17-20 February
9        Göteborg (SWE), 24-27 February
10      's-Hertogenbosch (NED), 24-27 March
FINAL Leipzig (GER), 27 April - 1 May

Media Guide - the online Media Guide for the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage series is available at this link

FEI World Cup™ Dressage, the only worldwide series in this discipline, has entered its 26th season. The series, created in 1985, comprises four leagues: Western European, Central European, North American (including Canada) and Pacific (Australia, New Zealand, Asia). Each FEI World Cup™ Dressage qualifier consists of a Grand Prix test, which in turn is a qualification for the Freestyle to music competition, where league points are accumulated towards places in the Final. Judged on both technical and artistic merit, the FEI World Cup™ Dressage combines art, sport and partnership between horse and rider at the highest level and consistently proves a winning formula with audiences all over the world.

Technical Note: The FEI World Cup Dressage™ Champion does not earn points in his/her starts but is automatically qualified to the next Final with two FEI World Cup™ Dressage qualifiers completed. Riders not belonging to the Western European League (WEL) or Central European League (CEL) cannot earn points in the WEL unless they have declared to compete in the WEL 2009/2010. These riders may however transfer the results from a maximum of three (3) WEL qualifiers to their own League. Points earned by CEL riders will be transferred to the CEL standings.


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