Warsaw, Poland – July 25, 2021 – It was with the utmost excitement that the Longines EEF Final Series came on top of Warsaw Jumping CSIO 4* this Sunday. Until the very last second, it was nowhere close to be predicted which of the eleven national teams was the one to finish off in victory.
44 amazing duos, two rounds, a highly technical parkour, and … still no winner settled. In order to decide how the top tier of the line-up was going to play out, Italy and the Czech Republic were asked to nominate a single rider each to come forward for the jump-off. The Chech decided to leave the task to Vladimir Tretera (CZE) with Gangster v/h Noddevelt, Italy were united in sending forward Piergiorgio Bucci (ITA). The former finished on one penalty, the latter delivered a clear one, taking Italy to the top of the podium.
When asked how hard it could be to bear the responsibility given by the Italian Chef d’Equipe Marco Porro, Bucci replied: ‘To be honest, it’s a feeling I love. That’s what I like the most, we are made for that, we are waiting for a chance to prove ourselves something and to take responsibility. Of course, there is some pressure and there is stress, that’s why we do what we do. We are used to it – sometimes it goes superb and sometimes it is less so, but it is always nice to give our best.‘
The Czech team, comprised of Vladimir Tetera (CZE), Filip Dolezal (CZE), Alena Machova (CZE) and Jan Stetina (CZE), as well as their chef d’equipe Petr Dolezal, made no attempt to conceal their satisfaction. Even though they lost the jump-off to the Italian team, they clearly proved that this sport is about making the apparently inpossible happen. Even though (because of the Tokyo Olympics) it was not their primary team – as they revealed during the press-conference afterwards – they truly delivered their best. Despite the young age and inexperience of the horses – the point to be highlighted – their team perseverance became the anchor to success. A rewarding one indeed – as for 2022 the Czech will be admitted to be a part of Division 1 at the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup (where the Italians have already settled down well).
The bronze was taken by the Austrians: Katharina Rhomberg (AUT) with Cuma, Alessandra Reich (AUT) and Loyd, Gerfried Puck (AUT) with Melody vd Smidshoeve, and Stefan Eder (AUT) with Dr Scarpo.
Just outside the top three came the Irish. The team of Poland with Jarosław Skrzyczyński (POL) with Chacco Amicor and Natalia Czernik (POL) with Duke G, Przemysław Konopacki (POL) with Duke and Wojciech Wojcianiec (POL) with Chintablue finished eighth.
Skrzyczyński (POL) was the only Pole to deliver a double clear. The other three picked up penalties on the way – be it a knockdown or ‘foot in the water’. As Przemysław Konopacki (POL) explained: ‘I decided to ride a less-experienced one, as Vasco – my number one – had sutained minor injuries. Duke had not really had that many opportunities recently to jump at that level.’ Despite that slight aftertaste of unfulfillment- as he admits – good memories will reverberate for long. ‘We missed out on some luck, I believe, otherwise we would have landed much higher in the ranks of this splendid competition.’ – added Wojciech Wojcianiec (POL).
The course designer – Elio Travagliati from Italy – thanked everyone involved in the organisation of Warsaw Jumping, sharing his impressions over the parkour – describing it as the one providing a lot of excitement, suitable quality of horse jumping, and the indispensable dose of sporting uncertainty until the very end of the final competition, complicating some untimely atempts to foresee the winner of the show.
Final Results – PLN $900,000 Longines EEF Nations Cup Final Warsaw CSIO 4*
1) ITALY – Chef d’Equipe: Marco Porro
Giulia Martinengo Marquet (ITA) & Calle Deluxe – (8) / 0 -73.93
Francesca Ciriesi (ITA) & Cape Coral – 0 / 0 -74.05
Piergiorgio Bucci (ITA) & Cochello – 0 / 0 – 70.27 | Jump-off – 0 / 34.63
Antonio Alfonso (ITA) & Donanso – 4 / (DNS)
2) CZECH REPUBLIC – Chef d’Equipe: Petr Dolezal
Vladimir Tretera (CZE) & Gangster V/H Noddevelt – 0 / 0 – 69.18 | Jump-off – 4 / 36.40
Filip Dolezal (CZE) & Coup de Coeur GP Madame Z – 0 / (4) – (76.39)
Alena Machova (CZE) & Chacco Bella – (13) / 0 – 75.47
Jan Stetina (CZE) & Gylord – 4 / 0 – 72.98
3) AUSTRIA – Chef d’Equipe: Roland Fischer
Katharina Rhomberg (AUT) & Cuma – 0 / (EL)
Alessandra Reich (AUT) & Loyd – (12) / 4 – 73.62
Gerfried Puck (AUT) & Melody vd Smidshoeve – 0 / 0 – 73.02
Stefan Eder (AUT) & Dr Scarpo – 4 / 0 – 72.85
Source: Press Release from Warsaw Jumping
Photos: © Warsaw Jumping / Lukasz Kowalski