IJRC and YRA members triumph at the Rolex Grand Prix in Rome

Karl Cook had never competed in Piazza di Siena. This 91st edition of the CSIO in Rome – Master d'Inzeo has been his first time in Piazza di Siena and he did it in the best possible way, winning the Rolex Grand Prix of Rome (h 160; €500,000), the first stage of the Rolex Series.


Cook was the fastest (69.53, the only one to go under 70 seconds) in the second round riding Caracole de La Roque, a Selle Français bay of 12 years. For the United States, this is the sixth victory in the Roman Grand Prix, after those of Anne Kursinski (1983), Margie Goldstein Engle (1997), Claire Bronfman (2002) and McLain Ward (2010 and 2016).

The second round was jumped by 13 riders. In the first round there were 14 clear  the only excluded due to the highest time (75.12) was Peder Fredricson (Sv Vroom de la Pomme Z).

Giulia Martinengo Marquet (Isle Delta) she the best italian rider, with 4 penalties, she finished in 15th place.


Cook - who learned to ride at his family's ranch in San Diego - was excited. "My mare, Caracole de la Roque, is just amazing! It's only her second CSI5* Grand Prix, but she did well! She was balanced, turned well and was reactive..." Cook said after winning.

It seemed world number seven, Austria’s Max Kuhner (AUT), had pinned down the win with a storming jump-off performance from his 12-year-old gelding Elektric Blue P who set the pace halfway through the 13-horse second-round decider when stopping the clock with a super clear round in 39.58 seconds.

However Sweden’s Petronella Andersson (SWE) came very close indeed when storming through the finish just 0.2 seconds slower in 39.78 seconds with her 10-year-old mare Odina van Klapscheut to slot, temporarily, into second place.

Talking about Odina Van Klapscheut she said, “I got her as a seven-year-old so we came up the levels together. She means a lot to me and my whole team. She’s a special character, she’s feisty and a bit like Karl’s horse – when she’s turned on you have to be on your toes! To be honest my plan was not to ride her today, but I had a strong push from my partner and owner Stephen Conter and from my coach as well, Helena Stormanns. So I guess I have to say thank you to them as well! She did two World Cups, at Mechelen where she was placed and then Gothenburg, and she did the Rolex Grand Prix in Windsor three weeks ago which was her first 5* Grand Prix, and she was double-clear in sixth place”, she explained.