Incredibly tight inside turns, lightning-fast bursts of speed and an extremely careful horse produced a World Cup qualifier win for this young Belgian in Gothenburg, Sweden on Sunday.
Photo: FEI/Roland Thunholm
From an FEI press release:
Belgium’s Nicola Philippaerts produced a career-defining win at the last qualifying round of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2013/2014 Western European League in Gothenburg, Sweden today. Lying well outside the top-18 qualification zone as the class began, his result sent him rocketing all the way up the leaderboard from 31st to 14th place and into a place at the Final in Lyon, France in seven week’s time.
“I’ve almost no words for this, it’s unbelievable!” said the 20-year-old rider who was filled with excitement after an extraordinary performance that saw him pip three-time FEI World Cup™ Jumping champion Marcus Ehning from Germany by two-hundredths of a second while The Netherlands’ Maikel van der Vleuten slotted into third. Son of Belgian jumping star Ludo Philippaerts, and twin-brother of Olivier Philippaerts who also competes successfully at international level, Nicola was one of ten who made the cut into today’s jump-off against the clock. And, with the 11-year-old mare Donatella-N, he scorched home with what proved to be an unbeatable round when third-last to go.
Go Nicola, and Go Riding!
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