CHI Al Shaqab 2015: Edwina Tops-Alexander won the Grand Prix

8 March - Six days of fabulous and thrilling equestrian competition culminated on the eve of Woman’s Day with Australia’s Edwina Tops-Alexander and the 2003-born mare Lintea Tequila (Campbell x Corrado II) triumphing in the five star CHI Al Shaqab Grand Prix.

The motivation was of course high for the top place at one of the most prominent equestrian events and it was further boosted by the awarding of 500,000 Euros in prize money. 42 riders and horses entered the final showdown, and after round one eighteen riders – among them four Qataris - advanced to the next phase. Only half of them completed the first round track clear though, and in round two only six repeated their first clear round to move on to the jump-off.

Edwina Tops-Alexander on Lintea Tequila entered the arena first, and with a blistering fast round at 38.86 seconds she set the standard high – and it would turn out nobody could catch her. Martin Fuchs and Clooney 51 (Cornet Obolensky x Ferragamo) went for a steady clear round and stopped the clock on 48.34. This would later turn out as a very wise decision, as the Swiss rider eventually ended up second as no other riders managed to remain clear against the clock.

Steve Guerdat on Nino des Buissonnets (Kannan (nl) Kwpn x Narcos II) hit two fences halfway through and lost hope early, while Luciana Diniz had the last rail down on Fit For Fun (For Pleasure x Fabriano). Daniel Deusser on Cornet d’Amour (Cornet Obolensky x Damiani), also had a pole down – but his time was in the end good enough for fourth behind Emanuele Gaudiano and Admara 2 (Padinus x Murano), who were very fast but hit the first of the penultimate double-fence.

“I am extremely happy to win here,” Edwina said afterwards. “I am very fortunate to have a horse like this. At first she didn’t show how fast she can go. I never had her at the outside event. She jumped so good, straight from the start.”

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 Source: Press release from CHI Al Shaqab

Edwina Tops-Alexander and Lintea Tequila won the Grand Prix at the CHI Al Shaqab. Photo (c) CHI Al Shaqab/Gannon.