London, U.K – December 21, 2019 – The penultimate day of competition at Olympia, The London International Horse Show, kicked off on Saturday, December 21, bringing thousands of equestrian enthusiasts to Olympia Grand in Kensington, London. As one of the most highly anticipated events of the action-packed week-long event, a roaring crowd watched on as 38 competitors came forward in the €170,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ London CSI5*-W, including seven of the world’s top 10 show jumping athletes. The event marked the 8th leg of the 14 total legs in the Western European League of the FEI Jumping World Cup™. The talented athletes representing 15 nations put forth their best efforts in hopes of garnering valuable points toward the FEI Jumping World Cup™ Finals set to take place in Las Vegas, Nevada in April of 2020. Taking home the best Christmas present of them all, however, was Switzerland’s Martin Fuchs and The Sinner.
Course designers Alan Wade (IRL) and Bob Ellis (GBR) returned to the arena yet again to set the challenging 12 obstacle track, featuring a wide-set triple bar and a triple combination that resulted in many faults on the scoreboard. Eighth to enter the arena in the first round, Holly Smith (GBR) and Hearts Destiny became the pathfinders of the course with a clear round. Many fault-filled rounds followed, leaving only six others who would manage clear rounds to move onto the jump-off.
During the jump-off, athletes were asked many difficult questions in the form of a shortened seven fence track. Navigated by Fuchs (SUI), The Sinner was the first double-clear of the class, setting the pace at 31.99 seconds. Four followed Fuchs, with only one clear contender that was not able to beat Fuch’s quick time.
Fuchs’ win is a special one as his uncle Martin Fuchs won the FEI Jumping World Cup™ London in 1990 at Olympia. Currently ranked number two in the world, the 27-year-old Olympian is having a stellar year. Fuchs was thrilled to log a notable win with The Sinner, an 11-year-old gelding owned by Luigi Baleri that he welcomed to his barn in January of 2019.
Following his third place finish in Friday nights Longines Christmas Cracker CSI5*, Max Kühner rode Elektric Blue P to second place. The 8-year-old gelding was the youngest to contend in the class, jumping in spectacular fashion to a double-clear ride and jump-off time of 33.83 seconds.
Ranked 19th in the world, Niels Bruynseels of Belgium took the third place ribbon in the World Cup™ Qualifying class. Aboard his very own 10-year-old gelding Delux van T & L, he produced two fault-free rounds to race to third in a time of 34.64 seconds.
The final day of competition at Olympia, The London International Horse Show CSI5*, will be Sunday, December 22, and will feature the highly anticipated Turkish Airlines Olympia Grand Prix CSI5*.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Martin Fuchs (SUI) – €170,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ London CSI5*-W champion
On the first round:
“It was a great course. When I walked it with Steve [Guerdat], we both said it is a great course, but I was not sure it would be difficult enough. That is what a great course designer like Alan [Wade] does. In the end, he had the right amount of riders in the jump-off and the right winner today!”
On the jump-off:
“It was a great round. I was early to go [in the jump-off] as number two and you have to take all the risks to put all the pressure on the following riders. It really worked out in my jump-off – I had a great turn from one to two and the whole thing worked out exactly how I wanted. I am sure if I tried a few more times I couldn’t be able to ride it the same again.”
On the win:
“I have not spoken to my uncle yet, but I am sure we will have a glass tonight! Every week when I go to the show, I have at least one person call me Marcus [Fuchs] and especially at this show, they are so traditional, that at least four people have already said ‘Well done Marcus!’ to me.”
On being at Olympia:
“It is an amazing horse show! The crowd is fantastic and the atmosphere is beautiful. They do a great job here and you really feel in the ring that this is a unique place for show jumping.”
€170,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ London CSI5*-W
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / R1 Faults / R2 Faults | R2 Time
1. The Sinner / Martin Fuchs / SUI / 0 / 0 | 31.99
2. Elektric Blue P / Max Kühner / AUT / 0 / 0 | 33.83
3. Delux van T & L / Niels Bruynseels / BEL / 0 / 0 | 34.64
4. Cornado NRW / Marcus Ehning / GER / 0 / 4 | 32.17
5. Hello Jefferson / Scott Brash / GBR / 0 / 4 | 32.17
6. Hearts Destiny / Holly Smith / GBR / 0 / 8 | 34.30
7. Confu / Laura Kraut / USA / 1
8. For Joy van’t Zorgvliet HDC / Kevin Staut / FRA / 4
9. Alamo / Steve Guerdat / SUI / 4
10. Romeo / Darragh Kenny / IRL / 4