WEG Gold medallist Maikel van der Vleuten wins the Prix de Canton de Vaud

12 September - Tonight’s feature class, the CSI5* Prix de Canton de Vaud was won by 2014 World Championship Team Gold medallist and Longines Global Champions Tour of Madrid Grand Prix winner Maikel van der Vleuten (NED) with VDL Groep Eureka, who took the victory by over a second from 2nd placed Doda de Miranda (BRA) with AD Nouvelle Europe Z. Third went to home rider Jane Richard Philips (SUI) with Upanisad di San Patrignano, who finished less than 0.5s behind Miranda.

The crowd followed every rider’s round with energetic enthusiasm, cheering the clears and groaning with disappointment when poles were lowered. Luc Musette’s two-phase course harboured a few deceptively tricky fences. No1 proved to be rather spooky to the younger, less experienced horses who were suspicious of the way shadows fell across the fence. Though the obstacle itself rarely fell - many horses jumped extra-high to clear it - it’s fear-factor served to encourage mistakes from unsettled mounts later in the course.

The upright going into the last short one-stride double and the back rail of the wide oxer coming out also hit the sand a number of times, as did the final fence - the Longines plank. At the half-way point of the 47-strong class, only five riders had completed the class clear and by the end just nine clears were on the scoreboard. Including Maikel van der Vleuten who led from early in the draw with his tough little mare VDL Groep Eureka, who bravely tried her heart out at every fence.

Strong performances from LGCT Top Ten riders such as Edwina Tops-Alexander (AUS), Maikel van der Vleuten, Rolf-Göran Bengtsson (SWE) and Scott Brash (GBR) have set the stage for a fierce battle in tomorrow’s key Grand Prix, the pivotal 12th round of this 14-leg season. With just two Grand Prix remaining until the final in Doha in November, every point counts in the race to be crowned Longines Global Champions Tour Champion 2014. Can any of the other top riders stop 2013 Champion Scott Brash’s sprint finish up the leaderboard?

source: http://www.globalchampionstour.com/

(Photo: Stefano Grasso/LGCT)