Rome, Italy – May 23, 2019 – Emilio Bicocchi (ITA) headed up an amazing one-two-three for Italian riders in the €25,000 MAG JLT Prize CSI 5* as the first day of the 2019 CSIO Rome – Piazza di Siena drew to a close this evening. It seemed that Ireland’s Mark McAuley (IRL) and the super-fast 10-year-old bay Selle Français gelding, Valentino Tuiliere (Diamant de Semilly x Silvio), were unbeatable as their time of 25.61 seconds, set when third into the ring, looked impossible to catch right into the closing stages.
But the Italians can never be under-estimated, especially on their home turf, and an extraordinary burst of speed from Guido Franchi (ITA) and his stallion Quixotic DC (Burggraaf x Abdullah) who were the 57th of the 69 starters into the ring, crossing the finish line in 24.95 seconds, causing the Irishman to lose his grip on the lead. And it was loosened even further by Emilio Bicocchi (ITA) who wears the uniform of the Italian Air Force, who flew around the course with the mare Evita SG Z (Verdi x Codexco) in 24.73 seconds to pip his fellow-countryman by a margin of just 0.22 seconds.
That proved to be the winning time, and Bicocchi was more than delighted with his young mare. “She’s only 10 years old and I’ve only been riding her for the last six months but she’s very tough – she’s a real warrior!” Bicocchi said. He is tempted now to ride her in Sunday’s €400,000 Rolex Grand Prix. “I’m not sure – I will compete her in another small class first and then decide” he explained.
Rounding up the perfect day for the host nation, that grand old man of Italian showjumping, Luca Maria Moneta’s (ITA) 18-year-old bay Westphalian gelding (Cordobes II x Polydor), slotted into third place when posting a time of 25.22 seconds being the fourth-last duo to go, demoting Ireland’s McAuley to fourth place. “Connery is a legend!” said the popular Moneta, and he’s absolutely right about that.
Source: Press release by CSIO Roma – Piazza di Siena
For full results, please click here.
Photos: © CSIO Roma/ M.Villanti / Simone Ferraro
Categories: CSI 5*