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WEG Eventing: the final say

Comments from some of the riders and their connections after the final jumping phase of the eventing competition Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy.

Canada's Peter Barry and Kilrodan Abbott.

Canada’s Peter Barry and Kilrodan Abbott.

» Full result and wrap

» Post-cross country comments and what the Kiwis thought

 

Sandra Auffarth GER

1st on Opgun Louvo

quoteIt’s unbelievable that we are double world champions. When I first rode Opgun Louvo I didn’t think he was a future champion, but we have taken every level step by step and he’s been fantastic this weekend, really working hard.

 

Michael Jung GER

2nd on fischerRocana

quoteSandra is a true world champion. She went across country last of all in the worst ground but she and her horse know each other so well.

Boyd Martin (USA) and Shamwari 4.

Boyd Martin (USA) and Shamwari 4. © Shannon Brinkman

For me, it would have been great to come to a world championships on the same horse (La Biosthetique Sam) four years later, but I’m happy with silver because my mare did such a fantastic job. She’s a very clever horse.

 

William Fox-Pitt GBR

3rd on Chilli Morning

Oquotef course I’m frustrated, but I’m probably lucky not to have had two fences down. I’ve never ridden a stallion at any decent level before. He’s a real worker and trier, and he’s a rare commodity. I’m very proud of him and it’s great for his future as a sire.

I’m delighted with Chilli, he was fantastic yesterday; today a little bit heavy legged, a little bit less reactive than he normally is and just flicked that pole. I’m lucky that he then jumped round the rest of the course clear and still got a bronze medal.

Certainly the atmosphere in Caen has been crazy, very akin with the London Olympics in fact and the horses are very lifted by that. It was fantastic to have such a turnout here and such support, brilliant for the sport, I think it’s been a terrific day. We weren’t coming here to necessarily medal; we certainly were outsiders and came here with an inexperienced team so it’s really nice to have pulled it off and for those horses to have gone so well. It’s just wonderful to have done this today for Harry and his connections and will hopefully spur him on for the future. We’ve come through in good fettle and on the forward foot, onwards to Rio.

 

Jessica Phoenix and Pavarotti.

Jessica Phoenix and Pavarotti.

Jonelle Price NZL

4th on Classic Moet

quoteWhen you get that close to the medals, you can’t help but think of what could have been. I came here hoping for a respectable performance … and never dreamed she would finish fourth at the worlds. This is the highlight of my career.

Comment to selectors, who had initially named her as a reserve: That’ll teach them for leaving me off!

 

Boyd Martin USA

8th on Shamwari 4

quote

My horse [Shamwari 4] really put in a huge effort [on cross-country], so I was happy with just one rail down in stadium. He was a little bit tired from yesterday but came out and jumped well, I thought.
We just bought this horse this year, and he’s come third at Rolex [CCI4* in the U.S.], and third at Luhmuhlen [CCI4* in Germany] and finished all right here, so I think obviously he’s my top horse at the moment and he’s still young so I think we’re still to see the better of him. He’s probably the best thing I’ve ever ridden and world-class in every aspect. I hardly know him and he put in a fantastic result.
The team result wasn’t that good, but we’ve got a good group of riders and a new wonderful administration and we can only go up from here. It’s perfect now for me and Shamwari. I’ll have some time to get to know him before 2016 [the Olympic Games]. I’m going to go home, regroup and get back to work.

 

Andrew Nicholson NZL

9th on Nereo

quote(On the cross-country) we were five minutes from home and we had to slog through deep mud – that’s what probably made the difference today.

 

Zara Phillips GBR

11th on High Kingdom

quoteI was so excited getting back on the team after not riding for a bit. Being able to put a double clear in and go into a big atmosphere, it was great to prove that he can do it. I’m chuffed to bits with the horse and for the owner Trevor Hemmings, we couldn’t do it without our owners.

Yesterday was a very difficult day for us all, this was for Harry, I’m just glad we could get some good performances in for him.

 

Maxime Livio (France), fifth on Qalao Des Mers.

Maxime Livio (France), fifth on Qalao Des Mers. © Normandie 2014

Elaine Penn NED

13th on Vira

quoteVira is so sharp, but she knows what to do when you start to jump. It’s crazy we’ve got a medal. We came here to qualify for Rio and now we’ve got the bronze.

 

Tina Cook GBR

16th on De Novo News

quoteI brought here a young horse and he has gone very well; to have just two showjumps down is unlike him but the atmosphere in that arena was unbelievable – to have 20,000 people all screaming and shouting. We were always going to struggle to catch the Germans, but we’re thrilled as a team to have achieved Olympic qualification and a silver medal; I’m really happy.

 

Sam Griffiths AUS

17th on Paulank Brockagh

quoteShe jumped beautifully, sometimes you’re just unlucky and that’s what I felt today. As I went through the flags I thought I was clear but as I looked around I saw the rail down. Sometimes it goes your way, sometimes it doesn’t.

The team achieved one of its major goals and that was to qualify for Rio – so now all attention turns to Rio and preparing our horses for making the next Olympics.

 

Kim Severson USA

23rd on Fernhill Fearless

quoteI’m thrilled. I know the horse can jump it is just a matter of me staying out of his way and sort of putting him in the right direction. He’s just amazing. He wants to do a good job, he doesn’t want to touch the rails; he’s pretty cool.

It feels good to be back. It’s something I didn’t think I’d be doing again. I missed it, but I didn’t know I missed it until now. I got in [my horse’s way] once or twice in stadium today.

 

Nicola Wilson GBR

25th on Annie Clover

quoteShe’s been superb to do two out of three at this level at the standard she has done it, I couldn’t be prouder. She is a super show jumper and hasn’t had many fences down in her career but I think the atmosphere and occasion just affected her and she just got a little nervous and jumped a little lower than she might sometimes. I think the world of her as I do all my horses, I just gave her a pat and got her to relax while they rebuilt the fence then she jumped nicely to finish.

She can hopefully learn from today, it is by far the biggest occasion and all the cheering and clapping was superb but just a lot for her to take on. She’s got a good sensible head on her and we will use this experience and turn it into a positive one, I don’t think today will be a reflection of her career.

 

 

Selena O'Hanlon and Foxwood High.

Selena O’Hanlon and Foxwood High.

Jessica Phoenix CAN

29th on Pavarotti

quoteHe’s never been in an arena this huge before with that much atmosphere. I think he was just a little bit starstruck when he went in. Towards the end of the ride, I felt him settle, and then he was back to jumping the way he normally does.

These Games have been a great experience for Pavarotti. I think with his first 4* being at the Games, we couldn’t have asked anything more from him. I’m incredibly pleased overall. He was amazing, and I’m really excited for his future.

I think it’s a really exciting time to be Canadian, and we’re really looking forward to the Pan American Games and the Olympics.

 

Sinead Halpin USA

38th on Manoir de Carneville

quoteI thought he was actually jumping really well but he is a lovely horse. He is not really affected by the atmosphere. At least the first half was one of the steadiest rounds that he has done.

I came around to the triple and just steadied a little too much. He was worried that he hit the rail. He’s a very emotional horse, so when something goes wrong it takes him a little bit to recover.  He’s 14 and just comes out every day just gets better and learns, so by the time he’s 20 we’ll get it!
I never felt like I was off a four-person team – I felt like I was on a six-person team. I couldn’t have been luckier to be in this group. We all came together. I have a lot to reflect on when we go home.

 

 

Selena O’Hanolon CAN

41st on Foxwood High

quoteI knew it wasn’t going to be a course suited to him, because all of the distances were tight. This course just didn’t suit him, but the Games have been super. I have a great horse, and a great team.

 

Peter Barry CAN

43rd on Kilrodan Abbott

quoteIt felt very good to go clear. I had hoped to go clear, show jumping is our strong point. I was looking forward to it, and I’m glad it came through for me. Kilrodan Abbott felt great in there. He was very supple. I think he was well prepared and he felt in good shape. He was a really good boy.

Overall, if you go to these Games and you don’t like it, it’s your fault. I’m very happy to have been here, it’s a great competition and was such a cool experience.

 

Lynn Symansky USA

47th on Donner

quoteI was just floored with my horse today. He was really, really mature, jumped a great round, and that rail was just a little bit of a peak at the liverpool there, but I couldn’t be happier with how we ended.

 

Yogi Breisner

Great Britain Chef d’Equipe 

quoteThe number one target of the World Equestrian Games was Olympic Qualification, which we’ve done. We’re delighted to win the team silver medal and an individual bronze, and I think the selectors have done a great job. I would like to thank UK Sport and the lottery funding for their tremendous support, without which we wouldn’t be able to achieve these aims.

I feel very privileged and proud to work with this group of six riders, who have demonstrated their professionalism, talent and natural horsemanship during these Championships, and particularly during yesterday’s cross-country test. We are naturally saddened not to be able to bring Wild Lone with us home, and my condolences go out to his owners, Harry and his groom Jess. The result from this competition gives us a wonderful platform to go forward to the European Championships at Blair next year and on to Rio.

 

Clayton Fredericks

Canadian Eventing Team Technical Advisor

quoteWe’ve got a lot to work on still, but I’m very proud of the team overall. We’re here at a true championship and everything is up to standard. But, our riders performed their personal best dressage – every one of them. That is something that every coach dreams of being able to do at a championship.

 

Prue Barrett 

Australian chef d’Equipe 

quoteIt didn’t quite go our way today but what we did do is qualify for the Rio Olympics.  We didn’t qualify after the 2010 WEG which put huge pressure on our riders leading into London.

Now we know we’ve qualified and can purely focus on getting our horses ready for the next Olympics.

 

David O’Connor

US Chef d’Equipe

quote

I’m a great believer in the riders. I think they’re riding well. This was one of those endurance days that took a toll on lot of countries. It was a hard day to watch in some ways. The fences actually jumped well until the last water combination. But with the footing …
The horses came through this very well and did some very, very good show jumping today in stadium. Overall, as the sport goes, Boyd put a good round in and Kim’s horse just jumped to the top of the standards.

 

Eric Duvander

New Zealand coach and chef d’equipe

quoteThe (cross-country) track was very well built and a proper WEG course, but the ground conditions were terrible. It was beyond what it should be. When you are at a championships, it shouldn’t be like that.

All our riders went as hard as they could. Their attitudes are inspirational.

 

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