An incredibly intense battle at World Championships in eventing came to an end last weekend. Show jumping course was extremely technical and did not give riders any second to take a breath after the jump. Throughout the course, every single fence fell multiple times, bringing the total number of rails to 178.
Germany started the day in the lead after Christoph Wahler’s clear and in time performance. However, that lasted until the best 25 riders entered the ring in the afternoon. The beginning of the game was inexplicit due to USA’s Lauren Nicholson’s double pole and Germany’s Sandra Auffarth’s triple pole in the course. Nevertheless, everything changed after Ariel Grald’s and William Coleman‘s beautiful clear rounds putting Americans in the lead with Brits being very close. After Ros Canter’s flawless round, Boyd Martin was under extreme pressure, but he ultimately finished with 4 poles, which dropped the US to bronze.
Don’t exhale just yet, though. Oliver Townend’s Ballaghmor
Class is one of the world’s most steady horses, having been among the top five in each of his seven CCI5* appearances as well as at the Olympics. Though, after just two fences in his round, things began to fall apart. The Brits were completely knocked off the podium by his four rails, which was perhaps one of the day’s more startling pile-ups.
In a dimensionally vast, tricky track, Mai Baum started off in fantastic style, appearing fit, fresh, and neat. However, as he reached fence number five, which had fallen a remarkable 28 times throughout the day, he performed what many horses before him had done. And further, another fell at the penultimate barrier, which had 26 rails throughout the day being the second-most significant. Still, a medal for the United States was assured, and a silver one in particular.
It was down to the final two, and the match-race for the individual t
itle, with the United States guaranteed silver at the very least and New Zealand having fought their way back onto the podium for the first time in more than a ten years after Jonelle Price did a good job in the ring and Tim Price delivered one of the 12 clears inside the time of the day.
Yasmin Ingham was born in the United Kingdom, at the Isle of Man. At only 25 years old, she is as icy-veined as a rider could get. She has won every age title in the UK, won two gold medals at the Pony European Championships, and won the CCI4*-S, which is typically held at Blenheim, for the 2020 eight- and nine-year-old championship, followed by the CCI4*-L last year, both with her mount this week, Banzai du Loir.
The pressure must have been intense being the penultimate rider in the arena, but the ice in those veins never melted. The flashy Selle Français gelding gave every obstacle on the course extra capacity without ever compromising effectiveness. Yasmin had several reasons to celebrate with her pals in the gathering ring when she landed safely from the final, clear, and within the time: she had just been crowned the new Reserve World Champion. She knew that silver medal was hers since there was only one rider left, the unbeatable Michael Jung and fischerChipmunk FRH.
Rarely do you witness a big sporting upset unfold quite like this: Even though Chipmunk has excelled in this last round, Michael had a rail and some time on his side, so that disappointing rail at 11A wasn’t completely out of the question or cause for expectations to change. The German team fans in the Kiss & Cry started their winning cheer as soon as he jumped cleanly over 11B, jumped that excruciatingly difficult water tray at 12 and had a perfect stride towards the final fence. Naturally, it came to an abrupt end when that top rail began to shake, wobble, and inevitably fall.
In the end, Yasmin Ingham wouldn’t win a silver medal. The gold was certainly hers!
Of the magnificent Banzai, she says: “He’s the best horse I’ve ever sat on, and I don’t think I’ll ever sit on a horse like him ever again. He’s the ultimate event horse: he’s incredible in the dressage; he has so much potential and so much presence, and he’s fast on the cross-country, agile, and brave. And then coming into the showjumping today, he just showed everybody that he was jumping a clear round and there was no two ways about it. He took everything in his stride, and I wouldn’t want to be sat on any other horse.”
Yasmin’s historic success not only surpasses her own wildest expectations, but it also represents a World Championships cycle in which youthful up-and-comers have gained prominence. For children who have posters of ponies on their walls and pony-related thoughts? It’s a solid sign that there is a method to achieve your goals, no matter how lofty they may be.
The route to the pedestal was opened for newbies after Michael and Chipmunk dropped to fifth place. Amande de b’Neville, who has looked almost like a new horse after a winter of developing and strengthening, with Olympic gold medalist Julia Krajewski on board, they moved up from fifth to individual silver medal place as a result.
She also won a team gold for Germany in spite of the day’s unfortunate turn of events in addition to the silver she received.
Tim Price, who advanced from seventh place following the cross-country race with Falco, was also able to bring home two medals: the long-awaited team bronze and an additional individual bronze for finishing touch.
Source: Eventing Nation
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