Aachen (GER)-At the FEI European Championships Aachen 2015, the German vaulters from RSV Neuss-Grimlinghausen won the gold medal. With the final score of 8.597, the defending titleholders finished ahead of the team from Switzerland on a score of 8.104. Bronze went to the vaulters from France (8.062).
"The week here in Aachen was fantastic," beamed Lichtenberg and added with a grin. "Today, wasn't quite as fantastic though. We had all wished for a dream Final, but that didn't happen. However, luck was on our side, that the others made mistakes too." All three groups that were candidates for a medal in today's final freestyle made mistakes, fell, wobbled. "With all of the mistakes that happened today, the Final was a tough battle again," summed up Lichtenberg. The national coach of the German vaulters, Ulla Ramge, explained: "The top four teams all have incredibly difficult freestyle routines and so you cut the atmosphere with a knife today."
"The group from Neuss were the last but one team to enter the Deutsche Bank Stadium today. The stadium was packed, the crowd were ecstatic. "We love this stadium," stressed Lichtenberg. "Especially, after the 2006 World Equestrian Games it was a particularly emotional highlight to compete here today. This atmosphere motivated us rather than putting us under pressure. "In spite off this support, the group from Neuss made a few mistakes in their "Alien Freestyle" . In the end, the European Champions came second in the final freestyle, which sufficed for them to defend their title. The gold-winning team in Aachen comprised of Julia Dammer, Janika Derks, Leonie Falkenberg, Johannes Kay, Mona Pavetic and Pauline Riedl.
"The team Lütisburg, Switzerland, lunged by Monika Winkler-Bischofsberger, was even unluckier, "Actually my vaulters could perform this freestyle on a donkey," she laughed with the silver medal hanging around her neck. "Our horse Will be Good went well, but the freestyle didn't. We have no explanation as to what happened." Two of the vaulters fell from the horse during the freestyle. Fifth place in the freestyle meant they initially had to fear losing the silver medal, but in the end they were relieved and delighted to win silver.
"With their final freestyle, the vaulters from France were able to move up one place in front of the team from Austria to take bronze. The French were the only team to perform their Ice World Freestyle without making any mistakes. They won the final competition and in doing so, secured themselves the bronze medal. It is the fourth bronze medal for the Team Ecurie de la Cigogne of Fabrice Holzberger. "Our first freestyle didn't go too well, but we are very happy that every went super today," explained the youngest team member Christopher Robin Krause in fluent German, her mother is namely German.“ The lunger Holzberger was delighted and spontaneously declared that Aachen is the 'best show in the world."
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