by Luca Paparelli
Ehning among the all-time great
The entire podium of the Aachen Rolex Grand Prix was German, but the real winner was Marcus Ehning riding Stargold who was in a state of grace. With this success, following those of 2018 (Pret a Tout) and 2006 (Nolte’s Küchengirl) Ehning has joined the club of three- time winners along with Hans Günter Winkler, Fritz Thiedemann, brothers Alwin and Paul Schockemöhle and Ludger Beerbaum. Now that Beerbaum has announced that he is retiring from the sport, however, Marcus Ehning is the only one who can challenge the record number of victories, four, shared by Nick Skelton and Piero d’Inzeo. However, the 49-year- old German also becomes the live contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping ahead of the next Grand Prix at the Calgary in September. Again this year Aachen provided a great show with as many as four previous winners in the Grand Prix jump off: Ehning, Daniel Deusser (2021), Philipp Weishaupt (2016) and Brazilian Rodrigo Pessoa winner as many as 29 years ago. And no less exciting was the Nations Cup won by Switzerland after 21 years thanks to the decisive double clear rounds by Steve Guerdat and Martin Fuchs.
von Bredow-Werndl and Dalera again
The dressage at Aachen provided an opportunity to test the form of the riders expected to take the lead at the Riesenbeck European Championships in September. Once again the reigning European and Olympic champion, Jessica von Bredow- Werndl was unrivalled and with her superb TSF Dalera BB won everything, the Grand Prix, Grand Prix Special and Freestyle, ensuring success for Germany in the Nations Cup. Aachen also confi rmed the competitiveness of Nanna Skodborg Merrald and Blue Hors Zepter. The pair formed by the Danish rider and her 15-year-old Oldenburg gelding had been a revelation, but they have now become formidable opponents, also in terms of European medals, especially for the two British Charlottes. At the 5* CDIO Charlotte Dujardin presented a steadily developing Imhotep, while Charlotte Fry rode Everdale, a stallion who incidentally is Imhotep’s sire. Everdale, however, is Fry’s second horse in addition to Glamourdale with whom, after dominating the World Championships at Herning, she will be competing in Riesenbeck in an eagerly awaited face-to-face contest against Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and TSF Dalera BB.
Yasmin Ingham’s first time
Great Britain had already had three team wins at the CHIO Nations Cup in Aachen, but never an individual success. This has changed now with the reigning World Champion, Yasmin Ingham, with Banzai du Loir achieving a historic win for British eventing and also for herself. In the lead after the dressage and third after the show jumping, in the cross-country final Yasmin Ingham and her French sorrel were (together with the German Christoph Wahler and Carjatan S) the pair that got the best result, with only a 1.60 time penalty. This made the difference against Michael Jung, riding FischerChipmunk FRH, who added a 2.80 time penalty in the cross country and failed by only 0.1 to achieve what would have been his third victory in Aachen, following his successes in 2016 with FischerTakinou and 2011 with La Biosthetique Sam FBW. With his second place, however, the German champion secured the Nations Cup victory for Germany. Its 11th since 2007, i.e. since the WEF – World Equestrian Festival in Aachen was born in the wake of the 2006 World Equestrian Games.
Photos by Stefano Secchi
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