Auffarth takes control for Germany in Strzegom

Lausanne (SUI), June 05, 2012: Germany is proving the nation to beat this year, after European silver medallist Sandra Auffarth opened the 2012 FEI World Cup™ Eventing with a convincing victory at Strzegom (POL) at the weekend and led her team to a second win in the FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing series.

Germany, which won the inaugural competition at Fontainebleau (FRA) in March, now has a commanding lead of 13 points over Spain at the halfway mark in the FEI’s brand new team Eventing series.

Auffarth made her team début in the winning German quartet at last year’s HSBC FEI European Eventing Championships in Luhmühlen (GER), and had won an HSBC Training Bursary for her outstanding performance at the HSBC FEI Classics™ in Luhmühlen – her first 4* event – only six weeks previously. She stamped her Olympic credentials at the weekend by leading from the start in the CICO3*-W on the 10-year-old chestnut Opgun Louvo and, adding nothing to her excellent Dressage score of 36.7, set an unmatchable target. The 26-year-old was also eighth on Parancs.

Switzerland’s Felix Vogg, riding Maverick McNamara, scored the only other sub-40 Dressage mark, 38.1, and was able to have two Jumping rails down and remain in second place, ahead of Andreas Dibowski (GER), whose 0.8 of a Cross Country time penalty on FRH Butts Avedon cost him second place.

There were 11 nations represented in Poland in the field of 38 starters, of which 28 completed the competition.

Some well-known combinations were aiming to take an early lead at the first of the four-leg FEI World Cup™ Eventing series, including Kenki Sato (JPN), who unfortunately had to withdraw Chippieh from third place after Cross Country.

With the cancellation of Chatsworth (GBR) last month, due to heavy rain, there are now three more legs of the FEI World Cup™ Eventing in Minsk (BEL), Malmö (SWE) and Le Pin au Haras (FRA).

The new FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing is clearly capturing riders’ and team managers’ imaginations and is turning into a gripping contest. Six of the 11 nations represented fielded full teams to pick up points in the FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing series. The Swiss, who finished second at Strzegom, are now placed seventh just two points behind Great Britain, winners at Houghton Hall (GBR).

Spain and The Netherlands, the latter led by fourth-placed Ilonka Kluytmans, also benefitted greatly from a trip to Poland and they have both overtaken France and Australia on the leaderboard to move into second and third place.

The next FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing meeting at Aachen (GER) on 3-8 July is likely to be another truly international affair, but Germany, who will be on home ground, remains the nation to beat.

FEI World Cup™ Eventing Results

1 Sandra Auffarth/Opgun Louvo (GER*) 36.7 + 0 + 0 = 36.7

2 Felix Vogg/Maverick McNamara (SUI) 38.1 + 0 + 8 = 46.1

3 Andreas Dibowski/FRH Butts Avedon (GER*) 45.6 + 0.8 + 0 = 46.4

4 Ilonka Kluytmans/Canna Pride (NED*) 44.4 + 4 + 0 = 48.4

5 Elmar Lesch/Lazelot 113 (GER*) 47.8 + 0 + 4 = 51.8

6 Eveline Bodenmüller/Jiva de la Brasserie CH (SUI*) 50.8 + 0.8 + 1 = 52.6

7 Sanna Siltakorpi/Lucky Accord (FIN) 53.9 + 2.8 + 0 = 56.7

8 Sandra Auffarth/Parancs (GER) 52.2 + 5.2 + 0 = 57.4

9 Patrizia Attinger/Ramaulpha (SUI*) 54.7 + 0 + 4 = 58.7

10 Frank Ostholt/Little Paint (GER*) 47.2 + 0.8 + 12 = 60

(*denotes team member)

FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing results

1 Germany 155.6

Sandra Auffarth/Opgun Louvo 36.7; Andreas Dibowski/FRH Butts Avedon 46.1; Elmar Lesch/Lanzelot 113 51.8; Frank Ostholt/Little Paint 60

2 Switzerland 193.0

Eveline Bodenmüller/Jiva de la Brasserie CH 52.6; Patricia Attinger/Raumalpha 63.9; Felix Vogg/Onfire 81.7

3 Sweden 228.1

Frida Andersén/Herta 60.8; Johan Lundin/Fernet af Kreffe 63.9; Tord Westergren/Touch of Lyric 103.4; Katrin Norling/Cobio Taste XX Eliminated

4 Netherlands 262.0

Ilonka Kluytmans/Canna Pride 48.4; Jan van Beek/Vision 102.6; Florinoor Hoogland/Captain Henessy 111.0

5 Spain 280.5

Carlos Diaz Fernàndez/Iberon CP 22 64.6; Albert hermoso Farras/Hito CP 86.3; Maria Pinedo/Windsor H 129.6; Juan Varo Zuniga/Western Playboy Eliminated

6 Poland 291.9

Pawel Warszawski/Hatteria 73.8; Marcin Michalek/Magnolia 86.5; Kajetan Walecki/Bachus 131.6; Katarzyna Kokowska/Czarnolas Eliminated

FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing Leaderboard (after 3 out of 6 Events)

1 Germany 30 points

2 Spain 17

3 Netherlands 16

4 Australia 15

5 France 14

6 Great Britain 11

7 Switzerland 9

8 Sweden 8

9 New Zealand 7

10 Brazil 5

11 Poland 5

Germany sustains lead in inaugural FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing after stellar performance in Strezgom (POL). Pictured left to right: Hans Melzer, Chef d’Equipe for the German Eventing Team with Frank Ostholt, Sandra Auffarth, Andreas Dibowski and Elmar Lesch being presented with their trophy by the Mayor of Strzegom Zbigniew Suchyta.

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