The results of the weekend

Extraordinary!!! Julien Epaillard is defying the laws of sport and rewriting the statistics book. After winning the Longines Grand Prix on Friday evening and the Equita Masters presented by Hermès Sellier on Saturday, the French rider won the Longines FEI Jumping World CupTM in Lyon this Sunday, riding his fabulous Caracole de la Roque. He succeeds the Swiss rider Martin Fuchs, world number two and winner of the last three world cup stages in Lyon.

Julien Epaillard has undoubtedly been the top rider in Lyon, winning all the classes in which he took part this weekend. Hailing from Normandy, and currently third in the Longines FEI world rankings, he confirmed his credentials and consolidated his current dominance on the circuit, with this sixty-eighth victory Department of the season. While six couples had gone through to the jump-off, only four managed to complete a double clear round. French rider Penelope Leprevost set the tone with her dashing Bingo del Tondou and set the initial reference time of 38"89 (fourth).

The Dutch rider Jur Vrieling and Long John Silver followed and didn't let them keep the lead for long, clocking 37"97 on the finish line. Then, the fourth rider of the jump-off, Julien Epaillard, entered the arena, driven by the public and boosted by his recent successes. The audience held their breath until the finish, before being able to applaud the rider's ultimate performance, having just lowered the reference time (34''88) by almost three seconds. Neither the Danish rider Andreas Schou on Darc de Lux, nor the Brazilian Marlon Modolo Zanotelli on VDL Edgar M could do better, although the latter took second place with a very fast time of 35’'61.

As regards the French riders, Simon Delestre and Cayman Jolly Jumper finished seventh, having picked up an unfortunate time penalty in the first round, while Kevin Staut and Scuderia 1918 Viking d'La Rousserie finished tenth, having picked up four points.


. Julien Epaillard I You never expect a weekend like this. You have to savour it! I knew that Marlon still had to ride after me in the jump-off. I admit that I was a bit worried about the double verticals, and I was actually a bit lucky. I tried to take as many risks as possible but without pushing to the limit. Caracole will take a break now and I am thinking of riding her in the Madrid stage of the Longines FEI World Cup. She has made a lot of progress this year. As regards Donatello, I think he is still a bit young for the Final. With the French staff, we are focused on preparing for Paris 2024 in order to have a solid team and do well.

. Marlon Modolo Zanotelli

I didn't really watch Julien too much, so as not to put too much pressure on myself. I knew he would be unbeatable, if he managed a good jump-off. So, I just concentrated on my job and I am very happy with my horse, which jumped very well. I love the way Grégory Bodo (the course designer) works, even if I would have preferred more oxers than verticals in this jump-off in order to go faster! (laughs) I am lucky enough to be able to take part in this Longines FEI World Cup circuit with my whole family; my wife (Angelica Augustsson Zanotelli, editor's note) competes along with me, and is even ahead of me in the rankings, and we are accompanied by our children and my parents. It's the dream of a lifetime.

. Grégory Bodo,

course designer I think we had a very good competition, building up from Friday and the Longines Grand Prix, where I wanted to test some sequences for the Longines FEI World Cup Grand Prix on Sunday. When you have riders of such a high level, you need to create emotion and excitement while remaining fair-spirited. . Sylvie Robert, President of GL events Equestrian Sport, organiser of the Longines Equita Lyon, Concours Hippique International What could be better for our competition in Lyon than to witness Julien Epaillard's victory? The public came in numbers, and in terms of sport, we had a great show, with nine of the twelve best riders in the world present in Lyon. Grégory Bodo did a great job with the course designs. A big thank you to him, to the riders, to the International Equestrian Federation for their confidence over these many years, to the Swiss watchmaker Longines, which has been a sponsor since 2013, and to the French Equestrian Federation. The entire French horse-riding community is looking forward to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. 


Press Release

Copyright ©FEI/Leanjo de Koster

The top of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ North American League has become a familiar place for Conor Swail (IRL). After winning the NAL's opening leg in Sacramento (USA) with Vital Chance de la Roque, Swail led the victory lap again in Washington (USA), this time with his mount from the 2022 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final in Leipzig (GER), Count Me In.

Bernardo Costa Cabral (POR) set a technical track at the Prince George's Equestrian Center in Upper Marlboro (USA), which was hosting World Cup competition for the first time. But the quality of the field was strong, and nine combinations advanced to the shortened course. The lead would change hands quickly until Swail entered the ring. While Bluman and Moggre would come close, neither could catch the undisputed king of the NAL.

Swail's winning time was 35.76 seconds, less than three-tenths of a second ahead of Bluman (36.00 seconds). Moggre checked in third at 36.74 seconds.

"[Count Me In] has really changed my career. He's brought me to a lot of places I'd never been and has been very successful doing it. This year, I know he's capable, and [returning to World Cup Finals] is something that I'm looking forward to doing with him. It is a plan at this point, which probably makes it better" Conor Swail (IRL).

Between Count Me In and Vital Chance de la Roque, Swail has recorded five NAL victories over the course of the last two seasons, and with Count Me In, Swail finished eighth in Leipzig. He will continue to pursue points toward the 2023 Finals in Omaha (USA) at upcoming legs in Toronto (CAN) and Las Vegas (USA).

"Since I got those two horses, Count Me In and Vital Chance de la Roque, we really hit it off, and we've gone through the roof," Swail said.

Swail boasts a commanding lead in the NAL standings with 40 points. Bluman and Sophia Siegel (USA) are tied for second with 17 points apiece.

The North American League resumes in Lexington (USA) on 05 November 2022.


FEI press release by Catie Staszak

Image: Conor Swail (IRL) riding Count Me In - winners of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ NAL 2022/2023 - Washington (USA) (FEI/Shawn McMillen Photography)