CSI 5*

A Dominant Win by Christian Ahlmann in €300,000 Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Hamburg CSI 5*

Hamburg, Germany – May 28, 2022 – Christian Ahlmann (GER) secured his place in the Longines Global Champions Tour Super Grand Prix today after a spectacular home win in Hamburg, Germany with his top stallion Dominator 2000 Z. Packed grandstands witnessed the local hero finish just ahead of young talent Michael Pender with HHS Calais and Andre Thieme (GER) on DSP Chakaria, meaning for the second time this season riders finished joint second after stopping the clock in the exact same time of 51.33s.

The German master declared he achieved ‘One of the biggest goals of the year’ by winning his golden ticket to the LGCT Super Grand Prix.

Dominator 2000 Z & Christian Ahlmann (GER)

Christian Ahlmann told GCTV: “It’s an amazing win in front of a home crowd. It is a full house even without not so perfect weather, it was an unbelievable feeling today. I know the ring very well and I know Dominator very well, we had our difficulties at the start of this show but today he jumped amazing and he gave everything so we had a perfect day. I was hoping for this golden ticket but I didn’t expect it today.”

Thousands of passionate and knowledgeable spectators withstood the rain to watch the world’s best perform. The expansive grass arena provided the perfect backdrop for the thrilling finish to the LGCT Hamburg weekend, with families and fans treated to a sensational showdown featuring the very best horses and riders for the sixth leg of the Championship race.

Eight combinations jumped clear around the Frank Rothenberger(GER) designed course to qualify through to the jump-off, five of which were German.

First to tackle the jump-off track was Andre Thieme (GER) whose mount DSP Chakaria, put major pressure on the rest of the field as they delivered a smooth clear but Thieme was shaking his head as he walked out of the arena to a standing ovation knowing he hadn’t done quite enough with a time of 51.33 seconds.

Mario Stevens (GER) actually looked faster across the ground than Thieme but taking a check to the final fence to play it safe for the double clear cost him a podium position as he stopped the clock in 52s exactly.

Christian Ahlmann (GER) & Dominator 2000 Z

Ahlmann’s ride, the 12-year-old black Zangersheide stallion, Dominator 2000 Z (Diamant de Semilly x Cassini I), has been a regular podium placer and is arguably one of most well known showjumping horses in the world and today he was unbeatable. Once Dominator 2000 Z was safely over the tricky Longines double, Ahlmann galloped the rest of the course, trusting the horse to clear the enormous fences at top speed in 50.51s, with the incredible round watched by a delighted home crowd.

The last two German hopes Gerrit Nieberg (GER) on Blues D’Aveline CH and the famous Marcus Ehning (GER) and his speedy Stargold both had an early pole but neither of them would have made the time to beat.

U25 rider for the St Tropez Pirates, Michael Pender secured his first LGCT Grand Prix podium and the best result of his career with the super HHS Calais. With the owners stood watching on the kiss and cry Pender did everything he could to squeeze all the speed out of the big scopey horse. He crossed the finish line in the exact same time as Thieme to share the second place spot on the podium.

It wasn’t to be for Johnny Pals (NED) on Charley or Niels Bruynseels (BEL) with Cristel who were the last two combinations to tackle the testing track both picking up faults and finishing outside of the top 5 today but picking up valuable ranking points for the hot Championship race.

Christian Ahlmann (GER) & Dominator 2000 Z

So it would be Ahlmann’s day, with the flying German sealing the victory and a golden ticket to the GC Prague Playoffs where he will contest the Longines Global Champions Tour Super Grand Prix. Alongside him is an already stellar line-up of Ludger Beerbaum, Katrin Eckermann, Denis Lynch, Sanne Thijssen and Malin Baryard-Johnsson, with all eyes looking to Round 7 of the Championship race in Cannes next week.

Podium: 2 – Andre Thieme (GER) 2 – Michael Pender (IRL) 1 – Christian Ahlmann (GER)

Final Results – €300,000 Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Hamburg CSI 5*

1) Christian Ahlmann (GER) & Dominator 2000 Z – 0 / 0 – 50.51

2) Andre Thieme (GER) & DSP Chakaria – 0 / 0 – 51.33

2) Michael Pender (IRL) & HHS Calais – 0 / 0 – 51.33

Source: Press Release from LGCT – Longines Global Champions Tour

Photos: © LGCT / Stefano Grasso