Julia Krajewski (GER) second with Samourai du Thot and Marilyn Little (USA) third on RF Scandalous
By Kate Green
Bettina Hoy (GER), who is currently enjoying a rich run of form, leads after Dressage at Luhmühlen CCI 4* presented by DHL (GER) and has a great chance of winning her home country’s premier event, the fifth leg of the FEI Classics™, since triumphing here in 2005 on Ringwood Cockatoo.
Triple Olympian Hoy, 54, who divides her time between competing, caring for her elderly parents and training the Dutch Eventing team, is renowned for her artistry in the Dressage arena and showed the way to younger riders with a mark of 36.0 on her 13-year-old Westphalian gelding Designer 10.
“Designer was really relaxed today. I was a little annoyed about the small fault we had in the first extended trot, but otherwise he felt great. In fact, the last trot was so good I almost forgot to halt for the final salute!”
Bettina Hoy (GER)
Julia Krajewski (GER), who made a sparkling four-star debut here last year when third on the athletic Selle Francais Samurai du Thot, is second on 37.1 and US rider Marilyn Little, riding the mare RF Scandalous, a newcomer to this level, is third on 38.0. Britain’s Nicola Wilson conjured a mark of 38.7 on the lively black mare Bulana, a notably bold cross-country performer, for overnight fourth.
Michael Jung (GER), the clear leader in the FEI Classics™ series, is not riding in the 4* at Luhmühlen, but Maxime Livio (FRA), currently second in the standings and winner of Pau and runner-up to Jung at Kentucky, is and is lying in 12th place on Opium de Verrieres. Badminton winner Andrew Nicholson (NZL), third on the Classics leaderboard, is 29th on Tesio ahead of what promises to be an exciting cross-country day.
“Everything has been built beautifully with some big jumps, which should not be underestimated. [New course-designer] Mike Etherington-Smith [GBR] has created something very different, which has been positively received.”
Hans Melzer, German team trainer
Luhmühlen, Germany’s main championship venue, is celebrating its 60th anniversary – it’s the second oldest event in the FEI Classics™ after Badminton – and has received a royal visit from its patron.
“There is so much that is excellent about Luhmühlen: the course, the way it’s run, the hospitality and the way everyone is treated. Over 60 years there have been so many people who rose to the occasion.”
HRH The Princess Royal
Cross-country action on FEI TV (www.fei.tv) starts at 12.05 CEST.