Abu Dhabi, The United Arab Emirates – January 15, 2023 – Joe Whitaker (GER) stole the spotlight last Sunday at the Al Forsan International Resort & Equestrian Club. Riding Hulahupe, the British rider €152,600 Al Shira’aa Longines Diamond Tour Grand Prix CSI 4*-W to conclude a great week of top sport during the 2023 edition of the Al Shira’aa International Horse Show CSI 4*-W & CSI 2*.
Held under the two round format, the 1.55m contest featured top riders and horses representing, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Great Britain, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, all going up against the very best from the Middle East. In the end, it was Whitaker who won, guiding Jessica Crane’s 11-year-old chestnut Royal Dutch Sport Horse – Dutch Warmblood stallion towards two fault-free performances, the decisive one in 42.01 seconds.
The level of the competition was high and enhanced by Billy Twomey‘s (IRL) second-place finish with Chat Botte E.D. (Casall x Darco). The duo put on a valiant effort, matching the clean scorecard of the eventual winners. However, they could not match the their pure speed, finishing second due to their final time of 43.60 seconds.
A testament of a fierce competition, three different European nations claimed the top three positions on the podium. Duarte Seabra (POR) and Dourado (Diarado x Cornet Obolensky) dashed for bronze honors, doing so in flawless fashion and in 44.61 seconds.
Final Results – €152,600 Al Shira’aa Longines Diamond Tour Grand Prix CSI 4*-W
1) Joe Whitaker (GBR) & Hulahupe – 0 / 0 – 42.01
2) Billy Twomey (IRL) & Chat Botte E.D. – 0 / 0 – 43.60
3) Duarte Seabra (POR) & Dourados – 0 / 0 – 44.61
Source: Al Shira’aa International Horse Show & Longines Timing
Photos: © Al Shira’aa International Horse Show