Oslo, Norway – Oct. 15, 2017 – Germany’s Daniel Deusser, 36, and the unusually-colored gelding Cornet produced a spectacular winning round at the first leg of the 13-leg Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2017/2018 Western European League in Oslo, Norway today. Second-last to go in the seven horse jump-off, the pair pinned Rio Olympic team gold medallist Kevin Staut from France, 36, into runner-up spot with For Joy van’t Zorgvliet HDC while Australian wonder-woman, Edwina Tops-Alexander, 43, clinched third with the mare California, just 11 weeks after giving birth to her baby daughter, Chloe.
Deusser was delighted with his new horse which was previously competed by America’s Lauren Hough. “He’s very sensitive, you have to get to know him a little bit but he has great character – he wants to help you in the end, he wants to win and he has a great instinct in the ring!”, he said.
The move from outdoor shows to the confinement of an indoor arena for the first time this season tested reflexes, control and accuracy. Thirty-eight horse-and-rider combinations representing 17 different countries challenged the diffcult 13-fence first-round track designed by Britain’s Bob Ellis. It was Tops-Alexander who set the early target in the jump-off with her fiery 10-year-old mare that was formerly competed by Egypt’s Abdel Said when galloping through the timers in 38.22 seconds, and recently-crowned individual European champion, Sweden’s Peder Fredricson, was just 0.2 seconds shy of that with H&M Christian K when fourth to go.
Staut blew the competition wide open however with a breath-taking run from his 12-year-old gelding, putting his foot on the accelerator from the very start and racing through the finish in 36.96 seconds to really raise the bar. He thought he’d done a pretty good job, “I had a plan, and I wasn’t expecting anyone to be faster!” he said afterwards.
But Deusser also had a strategy, and his worked out even better. “I didn’t see Kevin go, but I did see the first two (Douglas Lindelow SWE and Mark McAuley IRL) and I realised it would be easy to get too deep to the second-last. I thought maybe if I just stayed in the same canter stride I might get a better jump there and then really go for it to the last”. And that was exactly how he clinched it, with a flowing run and a super-fast finish in 36.83 seconds that couldn’t be bettered by last man in, Ireland’s Bertram Allen, who faulted at the penultimate oxer.
Deusser took the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping title with his great Cornet d’Amour, also by the stallion Cornet Obolensky, back in 2014 in Lyon (FRA) and today’s victory has set him on the path to the 2018 Final in Paris (FRA) next April, which will see the top 18 riders from the Western European League series qualify. This was his first indoor show with Cornet whose colour scheme seems to suggest he has splashes of black ink on his grey coat. And he’s excited about his future with the horse which came his way from Hough, who, as the tall German rider explained at today’s press conference, “is an American rider with an American way of riding – and she’s half my size so there’s been a period of adjustment! Lauren asked me to help her a little bit with him in July and it worked out good so my owners, Stephex Stables, bought him for me to ride and I’m really happy with him!” he said.
Deusser is now targeting more qualifying points at the second leg of the Western European League in Helsinki (FIN) next weekend.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Edwina Tops-Alexander (AUS) – LONGINES FEI World Cup™ Jumping Oslo CSI5*-W, third place
“My last indoor show was in March, then I had a five-month break because I was expecting our baby, Chloe. I got California in November last year, she’s not super-experienced but she has plenty of jump and a great mind.”
Morten Aasen – Show Director
On the show:
“I’m grateful and thankful to have so many great riders coming all the way to Oslo. The horses are out of this world as are the riders – what they do is just art!”
LONGINES FEI World Cup™ Jumping Oslo CSI5*-W
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / R1 Faults | Time / R2 Faults | Time
1. Cornet / Daniel Deusser / GER / 0 | 68.86 | 0 / 36.83
2. For Joy van’t Zorgvliet HDC / Kevin Staut / FRA / 0 | 67.02 / 0 | 36.96
3. California / Edwina Tops-Alexander / AUS / 0 | 66.14 / 0 | 38.22
4. H&M Christian K / Peder Fredricson / SWE / 0 | 68.76 / 0 | 38.44
5. Zacramento / Douglas Lindelöw / SWE / 0 | 68.04 / 0 | 39.27
6. Izzy by Picobello / Bertram Allen / IRL / 0 | 66.66 / 4 | 37.50
7. Miebello / Mark McAuley / IRL / 0 | 68.42 / 4 | 39.24
8. Calisto Blue / Michael Whitaker / GBR / 1 | 72.04
9. Fair Light van T Heike / Alberto Zorzi / ITA / 4 | 64.99
10. Saphyr des Lacs / Christian Rhomberg / AUT / 4 | 66.83
11. Hannah / Steve Guerdat / SUI / 4 | 66.90
12. Catwalk IV / Robert Whitaker / GBR / 4 | 67.02
Click here for full results.
LONGINES FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2017/2018 Western European League, after Round 1 in Oslo
Place / Rider / Country / Points
1. Daniel Deusser / GER / 20
2. Kevin Staut / FRA / 17
3. Edwina Tops-Alexander / AUS / 15
4. Peder Fredricson / SWE / 13
5. Douglas Lindelow / SWE / 12
6. Bertram Allen / IRL / 11
7. Mark McAuley / IRL / 10
8. Michael Whitaker / GBR / 9
9. Alberto Zorzi / ITA / 8
10. Christian Rhomberg / AUT / 7
Click here for full standings.