First Participation & Victory for Germany in the Nations Cup of Morocco CSIO 4* at Rabat

Rabat, Morocco – October 16, 2022 – Perfect weather, and even a little freshness, ideal for the horses, for this 5th Nations Cup of Morocco CSIO 4* which, after Belgium, Switzerland (twice) and Egypt sees the triumph of Germany for its first Moroccan participation after a dramatic outcome… for France. Great performance from Morocco, fourth at one point off the podium!

Sophie Hinners (GER) & Churchill 48

Ten teams took part after the withdrawal of Egypt on a course of twelve fences and fifteen efforts, including a river in two rounds concocted by the French course designer Grégory Bodo (FRA), who was unanimously appreciated, especially by the only double clear rider of the German team and architect of the German victory, the young Sophie Hinners (GER), only 25 years old: “He did a very good job. In both rounds, the faults were well distributed. It was very pleasant to ride, but it was a course that you had to prepare well, you had to calculate the distances well because there were one or two in particular where you couldn’t go wrong. It was very technical and thanks to this course, we had some good sport today I think”.

As the young German underlined, the faults were distributed over all the fences. Sometimes, if the poles fell, especially on the last oxer, it was obvious that the pressure and the fear of doing badly were the cause. The first round kept the Iberian countries, Spain and Portugal, out of the second round, while France and the Netherlands took the lead with 4 penalty-points each, 5 penalty-points ahead of Germany.

David Will (GER) & My Prins Van Dorperheide

If, in the second round, the Netherlands slowly dropped down the rankings, the victory ended up being a duel between Germany and France. The 5-penalty-point gap was maintained until the end after David Will‘s (GER) clear round, erasing the heavy 13 points of his inexperienced My Prins Van Dorperheide (Zilverstar T x Winningmood) in the first round. The outcome of the class was in the hands of Simon Delestre (FRA)and Tinka’s Hero Z. They were allowed to have one fence down, they had two. Even Simon Delestre did not believe it, he raised his fist in victory after the last oxer without realizing that the pole was falling. And as the saying goes, in the end, Germany wins!

And yet, after the first round, it was not at all obvious: “It shows that you should never give up and always believe in yourself,” said the German team leader Dietmar Gugler. “We were in third place after the first round and we never thought we could beat the French. Apart from Sophie’s ride, the others were not that good in the first round. But they are great guys, they got back on track and they showed that you never give up. These riders are really the future of the German team… Sophie, David, Nicola, René… they are great people. But what a competition, we really had a lot of fun being here and we will come back”.

Nicola Pohl (GER) & Exelero 2

Amongst these great people, Sophie Hinners (GER), a young rider who is still not well known on the circuit, but one of only two riders (with Canadian Sara Tindale) to have been able to deliver a double clear round today: “It’s really a special feeling, especially with my stable mates David Will (GER) and Nicola Pohl (GER) and it’s really great to have won here, especially with my horse Churchill 48 whose first Nations Cup it was and he started with a double clear round which brought a lot to the team. It was tense right to the end and the coin fell on the right side for us”.

Final Results – Ministry of National Education, Pre-School & Sports Nations Cup of Morocco – Rabat CSIO 4*

1) Germany – 4 – 222.70

2) France – 4- 217.39

3) Switzerland – 9 – 217.80

Source: Press Release (edited) by Pascal Renauldon / Agence R&B Presse for Morocco Royal Tour

Photos: © Morocco Royal Tour / Stefano Grasso