Geneva, SUI – Dec. 10, 2017 – The exciting and highly selective competition at CHI Geneva came to a thrilling conclusion as American Kent Farrington claimed his first Major title with a victory in the Rolex Grand Slam Grand Prix.
Course designer Gérard Lachat’s (SUI) difficult track challenged forty competitors over 17 efforts. During course inspection, Roger-Yves Bost noted it would lead to mistakes, and the riders would have to put in all their skills to stay without faults and in time. A clear round was not produced until the thirteenth ride in, Pedro Veniss and his brilliant Quabri de l’Isle. Unfortunately, the defending champion was not able to stay within the time allowed of 64 seconds which meant for the Brazilian no qualification for the jump-off. This also happened to American Laura Kraut, who acquired one penalty for two hundredths over the time allowed.
Despite the high level of the riders and the quality of their horses, the audience has to wait through more than half of the starting field before the first clear round was performed which was achieved by Harrie Smolders in the saddle of his brilliant Don VHP.
Shortly thereafter Henrik von Eckermann followed with a clear round aboard Mary Lou 194. The winning pair of this year’s Rolex Grand Prix of Aachen, Gregory Wathelet and Corée followed with an additional fault-free effort. At the end of the first round, the winner of the Credit Suisse Grand Prix on Friday, Kent Farrington, as well as the European team champion Cian O’Connor also qualified to make it a jump-off of five riders.
Smolders, starting in first to the jump-off, did not take all the risks, and was immediately beaten by the following competitor Von Eckermann. The Belgian Wathelet was unable to catch him, finishing the two tenths of a second behind. Next came the World No. 1, Kent Farrington. The American is known to be very fast, no matter the horse. In the saddle of Gazelle, he showed once again that he knew how to master the art of combining performance and speed excellently. Farrington benefited from a mistake of O’Connor and won the Rolex Grand Prix of Geneva, having won almost every other main competition at the CHIG in recent years at least once. He is now looking forward to the next stages of the Rolex Grand Slam, starting with the Dutch Masters ‘s-Hertogenbosch next spring.
Rolex Grand Prix
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / R1 Faults / JO Faults | Time
1. Gazelle / Kent Farrington / USA / 0 / 0 | 44.96
2. Mary Lou 194 / Henrik Von Eckermann / SWE / 0 / 0 | 45.49
3. Coree / Gregory Wathelet / BEL / 0 / 0 | 45.69
4. Don VHP Z / Harrie Smolders / NED / 0 / 0 | 46.89
5. Fibonacci 17 / Cian O´Connor / IRL / 0 / 4 | 48.88
6. Confu / Laura Kraut / USA / 1 | 63.02
7. Quabri de l´Isle / Pedro Veniss / BRA / 1 | 63.44
8. Fine Lady 5 / Eric Lamaze / CAN / 4 | 58.64
9. H&M Christian K / Peder Fredricson / SWE / 4 | 59.66
10. Miebello / Mark McAuley / IRL / 4 | 59.96
11. fischerSolution / Michael Jung / GER / 4 | 60.48
11. Clooney 51 / Martin Fuchs / SUI / 4 | 60.48
For full results, click here.