Vaulters Anna Cavallaro and Lukas Klouda made it a double in Salzburg at the weekend, following on from their wins in the opening leg of the FEI World Cup series in Munich.
The vaulters, both 28 years old, treated spectators at the Pappas Amadeus Horse Indoors event to dazzling freestyle-to-music rounds and their wins were greeted with great enthusiasm by the crowd.
Italy’s eight-time national champion Anna Cavallaro and her 19-year-old training partner Silvia Stopazzini, Junior Champion in 2011, repeated their one-two finish from Munich at the second leg of this prestigious series with outstanding performances.
Stopazzini led the field after the first round with 8,819 points, 60 points clear of Cavallaro. But in the second round, Cavallaro convinced the judges with her complex gymnastic moves on the 15-year-old Harley, lunged by Nelson Vidoni, to Luciano Pavarotti’s “Time to say Goodbye”, completing with the winning score of 8,785 points.
Verona-born Cavallaro explained the secret of her success. “I am able to focus on the important little steps on the horse. I know that it will work already when I run into the circle, and I love my horse Harley.”
When asked if this would be one of her last seasons, she was very clear that she is intending to continue for some time to come. “I am focusing on the FEI World Cup Vaulting Final in Braunschweig next March, and after that I will be training hard for the FEI European Vaulting Championships 2013 and the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2014 in Normandy.”
Stopazzini, disappointed by her small mistakes in the second round, was thrilled to be competing in Salzburg. “This never happens in my training, but I’m so happy to be part of the FEI World Cup Vaulting series,” she said.
Switzerland’s Simone Jäiser on Luk, lunged by her mother Rita Blieske, took third place with 8,210 points and Germany’s Regina Burgmayr secured fourth place on Cappucino, lunged by Alexander Hartl, with 7,934 points.
Cologne-based Lukas Klouda, of the Czech Republic, secured a 212-point-lead with Radix SB, lunged by Maria Imhäuser, to collect a total score of 8,489 points and claim victory ahead of Germany’s Victor Brüsewitz.
After placing seventh at the World Vaulting Championships 2012 in Le Mans, France, Klouda was happy to be back at the top level and leading the World Cup Vaulting series this season. “I had to stay cool,” he explained. “I’m in a good frame of mind at the moment and I hope to continue like this for the rest of the FEI World Cup Vaulting series.”
Germany’s Brüsewitz, competing for the first time on Luk lunged by Rita Blieske, was pleased to secure the highest second-round score with 8,371 points. “In the first round, I had some problems with the back pad and could not give 100 percent,” the 23-year-old said. “But after two training sessions I felt confident and I’m happy with the result.”
Germany’s Torben Jacobs from Cologne secured third place, also on Radix SB, scoring 8,128 points, with Switzerland’s Lucas Heppler on Aron von Eichhof, lunged by Vanessa Rusca, taking fourth place on 7,999 points.
International judge Jochen Schilffarth (GER) was delighted with the competition in Salzburg. “It has been a fabulous advertisement for Vaulting, with the athletes delivering high-level performances in front of fantastic audiences. The Pappas Amadeus Horse Indoors organisers have also taken great care in providing a wonderful environment for the second leg of this FEI World Cup Vaulting series.”
Reporting: Daniel Kaiser
1. Cavallaro, Anna ITA - Nelson Vidoni /Harley
2. Stropazzini, Silvia ITA - Nelson Vidoni /Harley
3. Jäiser, Simone SUI -Rita Blieske /Luk
4. Burgmayr, Regina GER - Alexander Hartl /Cappucino
5. Schmidt, Susanne GER - Alexander Hartl /Cappucino
6. Kuntner, Sabine AUT - Elisabeth Leitner /Harvey
7. Boe, Christina GER - Alexandra Knauf /Fabiola
8. D’Auriol, Sarah USA - Alexandra Knauf /Fabiola
9. Kowald, Stefanie AUT - Julia Durlacher / La Donna Dolce
1. Klouda, Lukas CZE - Maria Imhäuser /Radix SB
2. Brüsewitz, Victor GER Rita Blieske /Luk
3. Jacobs, Torben GER Maria Imhäuser /Radix SB
4. Heppler, Lucas SUI Vanessa Rusca /Aron v. Eichhof CH
5. Heiland, Jannik GER Rita Blieske /Luk
6. Zelinka, Josef CZE Nora Horicka /Lugano 2