Mechelen, Belgium – December 28, 2029 – No less than 42 riders started in the exciting €25,500 KBC Bank & Insurance five-star competition. There was no shortage of spectacle: It was a competition to die for and top-level sport. At a height of 1.50m, 13 combinations could remain clear and advance to the jump-off, including 6 Belgian riders.
A brief summary of a breathtaking Jump-off
It was the young Belgian Thibeau Spits (BEL) who started as the first Belgian with a sharp first time, but King of Essene (BEL) had the last two jumps down and the duo finished with 8 penalty-points. Immediately after that, Belgian Jos Verlooy could guide his Igor through the course. He could remain the first of the wood and remained faultless with a time of 36.85 seconds.
The German Hans-Dieter Dreher (GER) gave the public a nail-biting round, but unfortunately: The last bar fell. The Swede Erica Swartz (SWE) danced with Madonna a clear ride with a time of 37,84 seconds. Willem Greve (NED) took more risks and set a fast performance with Grandorado TN N.O.P (Eldorado v. Zeshoek x Carolus II), setting the time to beat at 35.82 seconds.
From Great Britain, Georgia Tame (GBR) started with Curiano van Maarle Z. She also remained faultless with a time of 36.43 seconds. Pieter Devos (BEL) with Claire Z made the audience totally wild. With a clear round and another even faster time: 35,67 seconds.
Could anyone be faster, you wonder? Yes though! The Dutchman, Lars Kersten (NED), sped towards an even stronger time. In 35.31 seconds he brought his Royal Dutch Sport Horse – Dutch Warblood mare Hallilea (VDL Zirocco Blue x Larome )to the finish line.
Who could go even faster? With Nicola Philippaerts (VEL) in the ring, the audience clearly hoped for a victory. The tension was to cut, but unfortunately – with 36.28 seconds Nicola was able to remain faultless, the fastest he wasn’t. Also creditable attempts by Belgians Niels Bruynseels (BEL) on Matador, Gilles Thomas (BEL) on Luna van ‘t Dennehof and Polish rider Przemyslaw Konopacki (POL) with Home-Run, but they did failed.
After an incomparable jump-off it was the Dutchman Lars Kersten (NED) who won the €25,500 KBC Bank & Insurance CSI 5*-W competition. Pieter Devos (BEL) and Claire Z became second and Willem Greve (NED) with Grandorado TN N.O.P. close out the top 3 while Nicola Philippaerts (BEL) 4th with Luna van ‘t Ruytershof Z.
In short, the traditional KBC Bank & Insurance five-star competition became another breathtaking competition and more than confirmed its permanent value in the Jumping Mechelen program. The years of cooperation between KBC Bank & Insurance and Jumping Mechelen guarantee top-level sport and investment in the talents of the future. The extensive Belgian presence in the list of participants this evening shows how investing in the talents of the future is clearly rewarding to top results.
Final Results – €25,500 KBC Bank & Verzekering CSI 5*-W
1) Lars Kersten (NED) & Hallilea – 0 / 0 – 35.31
2) Pieter Devos (BEL) & Claire Z – 0 / 0 – 35.67
3) Willem Greve (NED) & Grandorado TN N.O.P. – 0 / 0 – 35.82
Source: Press Release from Jumping Mechelen
Photo: © Jumping Mechelen / Temps de Poses