Salzburg, Austria – January 24, 2021 – It was the Belgian anthem that was heard at the Salzburg Arena after a selective course in the €100,000 Equitron-Pro Grand Prix CSI 4* at the end of the 15th Neuro Socks Amadeus Horse Indoors CSI 4* last Sunday.
The contest with obstacles set over the height of 1.60m required full concentration of riders and horses from the first to the last jump. The long-awaited clear round in the basic round of the world rankings was achieved in the end by exactly eleven of the 40 pairs of participants who made it the jump-off. In the end, it was Jos Verlooy (BEL), who became the first Belgian Grand Prix winner in the 15-year history of the Neuro Socks Amadeus Horse Indoors.
Jos Verlooy (BEL), born in 1995, was the youngest show jumper ever to qualify for a World Cup final in 2015 and also showed his class on Sunday in the Salzburg Arena. As the last starter in the jump-off, he laid it all out in the saddle of the Oldenburg Varoune, who known for his speed, shaving off 37 hundredths from Christian Ahlmann‘s (GER) mark, who had been leading up to that point, thus victory in 43.22 seconds and and a prize of 33,000 euros. “Thank you very much for the invitation to Salzburg. I really wanted to win today and I’m all the more happy that it worked, ”said the 25-year-old Belgian with a smile.
Christian Ahlmann (GER), who is in 16th place in the world rankings, saddled the 10-year-old stallion Solid Gold Z (Stakkato Gold x Calvin Z) for the Equitron-Pro Grand Prix and finished second with a fast lap in 43.59 seconds.
The third and only double clear in the class was achieved by Arnaud Doem (BEL) with the Belgian Sport Horse Edgard de Prefontaine (Contact van de Heffinck x Orlando), timed in 50.95 seconds at the end of their jump-off performance.
Karin Reichel congratulated the winner and those placed on behalf of Equitron-Pro: “A few weeks ago, very few of us would have believed that we would be here this week, so I’m all the more pleased that we were allowed to be there. Congratulations to the winner and a lot of fun with the new equitron-pro device.”
Organizer Josef Göllner was visibly relieved that the anniversary event was so successful: “Despite all the guidelines and requirements, our entire team was always behind the event. Nonetheless, the last few weeks have been difficult because we have always wondered if we are doing the right thing when we do 2 tournaments in a row. If something had happened at the first tournament, we would have had to cancel the second event. But the riders adhered to all requirements in an exemplary manner and played along well. This year we had an absolute world class field. A big thank you to everyone for coming and we hope to see you again in December!”
Final Results – Equitron Pro Grand Prix of Salzburg CSI 4* presented by Healthfactories Biotech GmbH
1. Jos Verlooy (BEL) & Varoune – 0 / 0 – 43.22
2. Christian Ahlmann (GER) & Solid Gold Z – 0 / 0 – 43.59
3. Arnaud Doem (BEL) & Edgard de Prefontaine – 0/50.95
4. Karel Cox (BEL) & Evert – 0 / 4 – 42.00
5. Bryan Balsiger (SUI) & Twentytwo des Biches -0 / 4 – 43.99
6. Emanuele Gaudiano (ITA) & Chalou – 0 / 4 – 44.48
7. Michael Jung (GER) & Fischerchelsea – 0 / 4 – 44.67
8. Maikel van der Vleuten (NED) & Dana Blue – 0 / 4 – 45.63
9. Andrzej Oplatek (POL) & Stakkatan – 0 / 4 – 46.33
10. Bart Bles (NED) & Kriskras DV – 0 / 4 – 49.66
11. Charlotte Bettendorf (LUX) & Nababette Z – 0 / 8 – 46.00
12. Julien Anquetin (FRA) & Gravity of Greenhill – 4 – 62.83
Source: Press release (translated & edited) from Equestrian Worldwide – EQWO.net for Amadeus Horse Indoors / Horsedeluxe Event GmbH.
Photos: © Amadeus Horse Indoors / EQWO.net