Holly Smith on a roll in Saint Tropez

Holly Smith & Denver ©Sportfot

Holly Smith on a roll in Saint Tropez with a double win in hand of Sunday’s Grand Prix

Holly Smith widens the gap at the Hubside Jumping Grimaud – Golfe de Saint Tropez and sees hers odds increase before Sunday’s Grand Prix! Holly and Denver, left her competitors no chance. Already a winner in yesterday’s 1.50m, she once again dominated, winning the day’s big class, the CSI 5* Grand Prix over a 1.55m track. The CSI 5* 1.50m speed class went to the Italian Emanuele Gaudiano and Carlotta 232.

Holly Smith & Denver ©Sportfot
Hubside Jumping – Holly Smith & Denver ©Sportfot

CSI 5* 1.55m Grand Prix

Already winners yesterday in the CSI 5* 1.50m Grand Prix, Great Britain’s Holly Smith and her amazing Denver once again had the final word to say in this Friday’s major class, the 1.55m Grand Prix! The team bronze medallist at the 2019 European Championships (Rotterdam) gave her opponents a hard time.

With no less than 41 riders on the start, including the World number 1, the German Daniel Deusser, the American Laura Kraut, the Swedish Olympic team champion Peder Fredricson (#2), France’s Kevin Staut (#9), Simon Delestre (#17), Nicolas Delmotte, Julien Epaillard (#15) or the Irish delegation of Billy Towmey, Mark McAuley and Denis Lynch, it was clear that the battle was going to be tough. Sixteen made it through to the jump-off.

The British rider, fourth to start in this second act, really threw down the gauntlet and put a lot of pressure on her opponents by crossing the finish line in 38.36s, forcing them to take every risk.

What a horse!”

she exclaimed as she left the arena.

Honestly I don’t have any other words, Denver is incredible. He performs well in any type of class, Grand Prix, Nations Cup and speed, he’s a real star. I couldn’t have hoped for a better start to the competition. I was luckier than in the previous class because I was able to watch the other riders in the first round and also in the jump-off. This allowed me to see how I could gain time and once I was in the ring I just went for it. He really has scope, covers the ground and is really determined in these moments. I’m also delighted for his owners, whom I would like to thank and without whom I wouldn’t have the opportunity to ride such a horse.”

The Colombian Carlos Enrique Lopez Lizarazo, also giving it everything on G & C Arrayan, was not far behind, just a few tenths of a second in 38.57s. Also pulling out all the stops, Frenchman Julien Epaillard, often considered as being unbeatable when it comes to speed, finished 3rd with his winning ride from yesterday, Usual Suspect d’Auge (38.83s).

Carlos Enrique Lopez Lizarazo
Hubside Jumping – Carlos Enrique Lopez Lizarazo and G & C Arrayan ©Sportfot

CSI 2* 1.40m Grand Prix

The CSI 2* 1.40m Grand Prix went to France’s Mégane Moissonnier. With no less than 82 starters and 30 qualifying for the jump-off, winning was not going to be an easy task. In the end, 15 riders made it through to the second round and it was the French rider, riding Ureka de Roy, who won in 36.48s.

I found the course quite tricky to ride, but there are so many good riders that there are always a lot of clear rounds in these classes,”

explained Mégane.

Hubside Jumping – Mégane Moissonnier and Ureka de Roy ©Sportfot

My mare was brilliant, she jumped even better than last week so I’m really thrilled with this victory and I hope we’ll do just as well tomorrow in the 1.45m.”

A podium that concluded 100% French as she was followed by Clément Boulanger and Vaya de Lacke in 36.64s and Olivier Perreau with Dalton du Morion (38.66s).

1.50m CSI 5* speed class

The Italian, Emanuele Gaudiano, known to be a formidable opponent when it comes to going fast, won the 1.50m CSI 5* speed class. It was with his faithful Carlotta 232, with whom he recently won in Valencia, Monaco and Valkenswaard, that he gave himself this new success, stopping the clock at 59.07s.

“Carlotta is extremely fast and she jumped really well again today. She’s consistent and proved to me yet again that I can always count on her. I’m absolutely delighted with this new victory here at Grimaud”,

said the winner.

Great Britain’s Holly Smith was unable to keep up with the frantic pace set by the Italian rider, as she finishes 2nd in 62.72s with Fruselli. France’s Kevin Staut was 3rd with Athos des Genets (63.28s).

Rendezvous Saturday 25th September for the 3rd day of competition with, as the highlight, the 1.50m CSI 5* Grand Prix.

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