Oliva Nova, Spain – November 17, 2019 – The third and last week of the 2019 Autumn MET II in Oliva Nova concluded on Sunday with the Grand Prix CSI 3*, presented by CHG – Construcciones Hispano Germanas SA. A total of 60 horse-and-rider combinations had qualified to take part in the Grand Prix, that had €50,200 in prize money on offer along with valuable world ranking points. Sixteen pairs cleared the first-round track, that consisted of 13 obstacles and 16 efforts, set by course designer Christian Wiegand (GER) in the beautiful Oliva Nova ring. With some of Europe’s very best horses and riders present, the class promised to be a nail biter and in the end it turned into a matter of margins.
As second to go in the jump-off over a shortened, seven fence-track, Chad Fellows (GBR) on the 10-year-old Selle Français gelding, Vinci de Beaufour (Diamant de Semilly x Heartbreaker), setting the standard by clocking a very fast time of 38.76 seconds.
Others followed, but did not seem to get anywhere near Fellows’ time – until his compatriot Harry Charles (GBR) entered the ring. Riding the 10-year-old Holsteiner mare, Bambina (Cassini I x Carvalho), Charles managed to shave a fraction off Fellows’ leading time when stopping the clocks on 38.75 seconds – just enough to snatch the win.
Harry Charles (GBR) & Bambina
“I was surprised to win today, it is our first Grand Prix together and she is not naturally the fastest horse,” Harry commented afterwards. “However, she has a huge stride and I made sure to do the turns as tight as possible. I think that was what made the difference. The course today was very nice, a fair course. All week it was tough to qualify for the Grand Prix, and I think the course builder did a good job. The course rode really nice and the jump-off was super,” Harry continued.
Talking about his winning ride Bambina, Harry added: “My sisters Sienna and Scarlett have ridden her before me, it is only my second show with her. I took over in the start of October, so my sisters have done a good job producing her. She has everything I am looking for in a horse, and hopefully she will do some really good things in the future.”
“My whole family was here, even my mom – and she doesn’t come to too many shows and it was nice to have her here,” Harry said about his time at the Autumn MET 2019. “I have not been here so often, and it has changed a lot since I last came. I think the main ring is one of the best in Europe! You can ride with big distances, with a lot of canter, really attack the fences and that is how I like to ride. It is a great facility, with great atmosphere, I am really impressed with the show. I go back home for a few weeks now and my next show will be CHI Geneva, I am really looking forward to that.”
Santiago Nuñes Riva (ESP) on Valentino de Hus Z (Vivaldi du Seigneur x Trophee du Rozel) took the third place with a double clear round in 39.59 seconds, while 39.68 seconds gave Taizo Sugitani (JPN) and Quincy 194 (Frh Quaid x As Di Villagana) the fourth place. Niklaus Schurtenberger (SUI) on Lireu (Legolas x breeding unknown) took the fifth spot with a time of 39.77 seconds in the jump-off.
The Mediterranean Equestrian Tour now takes a break and resumes in January 2020 with the spring edition.
For more information about the Spring MET 2020, click here.
For full results, please click here.
Source: Press release from the Mediterranean Equestrian Tour
Photos: © 1clicphoto @ www.1clicphoto.com / Hervé Bonnaud