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Stage is set for Spectacular LGCT Cascais

Release date: 08/07/2017

Photo: LGCT / Stefano Grasso

Flying Dutchman Harrie Smolders has a prime opportunity to extend his narrow lead at the top of the overall ranking in tonight’s Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix under floodlights in the beautiful setting of Cascais on Portugal’s Atlantic coast.

Smolders goes into the high pressure 1.60m competition on 185 points after a hugely consistent season so far. His nearest rival Christian Ahlmann, sitting on 180 points, is not in Cascais giving the Dutch star a chance to consolidate his lead.

There are fascinating and intense battles developing at the top of the leaderboard with the world’s top riders determined to improve their standings this weekend.  Turning up the temperatures will be Scott Brash (GBR), Marcus Ehning (GER), Bertram Allen (IRL), Ben Maher (GBR), Alberto Zorzi (ITA), Simon Delestre (FRA), Roger-Yves Bost (FRA), Henrik von Eckermann (SWE) and Marco Kutscher (GER).

Italy’s Alberto Zorzi could climb up the Longines Global Champions Tour ranking if he can continue recent form during tonight’s Grand Prix. Other riders in the Top 10 including Maikel van der Vleuten, Lorenzo de Luca and Scott Brash.  Jack Towell (116 points) and Simon Delestre (115 points) will have their sights set on winning some serious ranking points to move up the Top 10.

Course designer Frank Rothenberger will be setting a suitably challenging course in the sweeping 110m x 70m grass arena offering plenty of opportunity for acceleration between the fences. 

Young Swiss star Martin Fuchs proved himself early on in the event with an impressive win in the Friday CSI5* riding Clooney to victory against a field of 20 in the jump off. He fought off heavy competition from on-form Jack Hardin Towell and Cian O’Connor.

One of the most popular events on the Tour amongst riders, the lively coastal town of Cascais near Estoril, Portugal, plays host to the Longines Global Champions Tour for the 12th year running. Cascais has grown into a renowned international destination for world-class sport, hosting the America’s Cup sailing, golf, tennis, surfing and motorsports. With it's warm climate, visitors flock to this stunning coastline.

Tune in at 21:30 local time via GCT TV to watch all the action unfold!