Valence, France – August 29, 2021 – On Sunday, thirty-six competitors took part in the Hubside Jumping de Valence Grand Prix CSI 4*. The sun was shining, the grandstands were packed and the audience was enthusiastic. And rightly so! François-Xavier Bourdant, who was the first double clear in the class, went into the lead and held on to his pole position! With Brazyl de Mezel, the rider made light of the fences and the time before an enthusiastic audience.
The first round, designed by France’s Grégory Bodo (FRA), was a technical one, but was “built with the horses in mind” as Philippe Rozier (FRA), the French team gold medallist at the Rio Olympics, highlighted during the course walk. Number 4 which was a plank was undoubtedly decisive in the class and alone was knocked down by thirteen riders. The time allowed was also played a significant role, penalising Ireland’s Stephen Moore (IRL), who had a superb clear round in terms of jumping with Albert K, but unfortunately was too slow when he crossed the finish line. France’s Mégane Moissonnier (FRA) with the powerful Cordial and Argentina’s José Maria Larocca Jr. (ARG) with Finn Lente suffered the same fate.
France’s Cédric Hurel (FRA) and his fantastic Fantasio Floreval Z, who are in great form this season, got the ball rolling with the first clear round. Jeanne Sadran (FRA), the young French lady rider and Vannan immediately followed suit, and thus ensured that there would be a jump-off. It appeared that there would then be a series of clear rounds as Normandy’s François-Xavier Boudant (FRA) and Brazyl du Mezel also qualified for the jump-off…But the first round wasn’t that easy…In the end, ten combinations managed to jump clear and obtain their ticket for the jump-off. France, Colombia, Portugal and Great Britain: the battle for victory was going to be very close considering the level of the riders competing.
Cédric Hurel (FRA) and Fantasio Floreval Z, who had the difficult task of going first in this second part of the competition, had every reason to be pleased with their result: 4 faults in a time of 34:37, and a seventh place in the overall line-up.
This set the tone, and opened the door to a host of possibilities. As there’s no such word as can’t in French, Normandy’s François-Xavier Boudant (FRA) had the first double clear with Apache d’Adrier’s grandson in a time of 34:36, going into the lead provisionally and suspense was at its height. Titouan Schumacher (FRA) and his Atome Z unsettled the audience, as well as the leading combination, going over the finish line faster…but knocking down the final fence into the bargain!
We look forward to seeing you at the HUBSIDE JUMPING Grimaud-Gulf of Saint-Tropez, whose Hubside Fall Tour will begin on 9 September!
François-Xavier Boudant (FRA)
I’m delighted as it’s my first 4* Grand Prix win. I had already won some CSI 3* shows, but it’s my first CSI 4* victory. Brazyl du Mezel has been at my stables for three years now and has constantly progressed. He’s incredible and jumps clear round after clear round. This weekend he jumped five rounds and was clear in all five. I was definitely luckier than Titouan Schumacher (FRA) in the jump-off as he was a bit faster, and Rodrigo Giesteira Almeida (POR), the Portuguese rider, set off really quickly but messed up his last bend. But that’s the way it goes. I rode at the beginning of the jump-off. I had a good round and I also put pressure on the others which led them to make mistakes. It worked for me this time! Before the prize-giving ceremony, I said to John Whitaker (GBR), who was second, that it was great to win, but all the more so ahead of a legend like him! I already came to the HUBSIDE JUMPING de VALENCE a few years ago, and I’m a regular at the HUBSIDE JUMPING Grimaud-Gulf of Saint-Tropez. I was already fourth in a CSI 4* Grand Prix there. I’ve been lucky, I’ve had quite a good season. I recently sold one of my best horses, GFE Cicave du Talus, so it’s always hard to end up with one horse less. Now I’ll have to train other ones. I also hope I’ll find other ones. I don’t have any immediate goals, my current priority is to continue to allow my horse to progress. I think I’ll go back to the HUBSIDE JUMPING Grimaud-Gulf of Saint-Tropez a bit in September and October. Sadri Fegaier (FRA) organises very high-level shows, so It’s super to be able to compete in them.
Final Results – €100,000 Jump-off Grand Prix CSI 4*
1) Francois Xavier Boudant (FRA) & Brazyl du Mezel – 0 / 0 – 34.36
2) John Whitaker (GBR) & Unick du Francport – 0 / 0 – 35.40
3) Rodrigo Giesteira Almeida (POR) & Delvaux – 0 / 0 – 36.08
Source: Press Release by Daniel Koroloff / Blizko Communication for Hubside Jumping de Valence
Photos: © Hubside Jumping / Sportfot