World Equestrian Festival Aachen 2015: Scott Brash Wins The Rolex Grand Prix
Monday, June 1, 2015
Posted by Niels Knippertz, Aachen
Fantastic atmosphere, fantastic sport and a fantastic victory: The British show-jumper, Scott Brash, number one in the world rankings, rode to victory in the Rolex Grand Prix, the Grand Prix of Aachen at the World Equestrian Festival Aachen 2015 with his top horse “Hello Sanctos”. Three clear rounds and the fastest time in the jump-off (48.04 seconds) – these were the ingredients for the phenomenal victory in a nail-biting final.
For Brash, the victory brought double the reason for joy: Because the win means his personal Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping continues – since the rider who wins the three Major Shows in Aachen, in Spruce Meadows, Canada and in Geneva, has the chance to pick up a bonus of one million Euros in addition to the prize-money. Thus, the final challenge for the show-jumper from Great Britain beckons in September. If he competes there, he has already secured himself the bonus of half a million Euros for two Major victories in succession.
The crowd comprising of almost 40,000 spectators, had to hold their breaths right up to the last minute in the biggest jumping stadium in the world on Sunday. Because Brash was the last rider in the jump-off and in the last second of the competition he claimed the victory in the first Major competition of the year. He seemed to have taken the Course Designer, Frank Rothenberger’s tip to heart. Rothenberger had namely announced before the jump-off: “Whoever doesn’t put his foot down in the jump-off, might just have well stayed at home.” This proved to be no problem at all for the 13-year-old gelding: Hello Sanctos is known for his speed. Even though last year the 29-year-old rider had jokingly came to the conclusion that Hello Sanctos doesn’t like Aachen. This year his horse seems to have changed its mind: “Yes, it is crazy. Hello Sanctos jumped fantastically today.” However, Brash was not only overwhelmed by his victory: “I can seriously say from the bottom of my heart that Aachen is the best crowd in the world.”
Daniel Deusser experienced that joy and sorrow, elation and defeat lie very closely together in the Rolex Grand Prix. The 33-year-old German show-jumper was the first rider to jump clear in the jump-off. At least for a few minutes, the dream of winning was close enough to grasp. However, the dream was shattered when Brash jumped clear over the last obstacle. Like Brash, Deusser also had three clear rounds with his grey gelding, Cornet d’Amour, however his time of 48.04 seconds only sufficed for second place. Deusser also reached the jump-off in the Rolex Grand Prix last year. However, after picking up four faults he finished fourth. “I was very happy with my rounds today, second place is a fantastic result. And when one considers Scott’s performance over the last months, the victories he has celebrated, it was almost clear that he was going to beat me,” said Deusser.
Third place went to the French rider, Simon Delestre with Ran des Hayettes. This pair also achieved the amazing feat of jumping clear in all three rounds. With a time of 49.27 seconds, he took just over a second longer than Deusser to reach the finish line. “We gave it our very best shot. I am delighted with the result,” the 33-year-old French rider said.
At the World Equestrian Festival Aachen 2015, the 40 best show-jumpers in the world competed in the Rolex Grand Prix, the Grand Prix of Aachen on Sunday afternoon in the almost sold-out Main Stadium. 18 competitors qualified for the second round and seven pairs competed for the most coveted title in one of the most difficult competitions in the world in the subsequent jump-off.
Official Website: www.chioaachen.com