All four horses passed the jog this morning so it was just a case of packing up and the usual chores on the Sunday morning. The jumping started at 2.15 and it had been raining on and off, a small price to pay for the excellent going the horses enjoyed yesterday.
The jumping was back on the surface in the main arena and it was nice to have Luis Alvarez Cevera on hand for his first international eventing show of 2020. Spartaco ( Sparty) held up his excellent pole clearing skills this season with an assured clear and I am sure Tim breathed a sigh of relief at the fact that it was back to normal with nothing random going wrong!
Jonelle ran out of order on McClaren and he too performed his usual immaculate round and completed his Olympic qualification with a double clear. It was a nice situation to be assured of third spot before Grappa Nera ( Grape) had started her warm up.
Tim and Wesko ( Dash) showed that at 17 Dash has not lost any of his professionalism or and a perfectly timed and jumped clear round also put yesterday’s errors behind them and finally gained them their Olympic qualification which we have been waiting for since the heartbreak of Pau last October.
So with three clear rounds under their belts all eyes were on Jonelle and Grape. Yoshi Oiwa jumped clear on Tullyoran Cruise to confirm the runner up slot and Jonelle cantered in holding the lead by just 0.7.
Grape has had a single rail since August 2018 so the stats were good. But the last of the treble fell which moved her down to second and that meant a Japanese win which we salute… good job Yoshi, that is not an easy mare to ride!
Jess and Debs will truck back across Europe with the Fabulous Five on board and Tim and Jonelle fly back to the rather unglamorous Lion airport tonight. All being good they should get back around midnight and then its Wellington International for the next two days with an 8.06 dressage for Tim and Xavier Faer ( Hugo) to kickstart the day off.
Photo credits to Jackie Olivier.