Springsteen Soars to Opening CSI5* LGCT Valkenswaard Win
Release date: 11/08/2017
Photo: LGCT / Stefano Grasso
Jessica Springsteen (USA) stormed to a spectacular Longines Global Champions Tour of Valkenswaard CSI5* win, opening a weekend of top sport and show jumping action. With her lightning fast bay mare Davendy S, the pair blew away the rest of the competition, with the Tops International Arena based rider kicking off the 13th leg of the Championship in style. Hot on her heels was local rider, Albert Zoer (NED) who came a close second with Gigolo, while third went to Colombia’s Carlos Lopez (COL) and Ulhane de Conde.
A delighted Jessica said: “[Davendy’s] so much fun, and I know her so well - it’s her niche. She jumped amazing, I’m so happy with her. It’s nice to be competing at home, and a good start to the weekend - I look forward to this every year. My parents got in yesterday, so it’s a pleasure to have them here.”
Uliano Vezzani set a flowing course for the first class of the weekend, making full use of the expansive sand arena. With colourful fences depicting windmills, tulips and bicycles, the world’s best were eased into the first of a three day festival of show jumping, allowing their top horses to flex their muscles as the Longines Global Champions Tour of Valkenswaard kicked off in style.
First to really set the pace against the 47 strong field was Carlos Lopez (COL) with Ulhane de Conde, the pair flying around the expansive arena in the second phase of the competition to set the time to beat at 26.98s.
Jessica Springsteen (USA) and Davendy S soon blitzed around the arena - the Tops International Arena based rider making short work of the second part of the class. With Davendy leaping over the fences, and the pair showcasing a strong bond and partnership, Jessica threw down the gauntlet finishing almost two seconds faster than Carlos’ time to stop the clock in 25.49s. Earlier in the day Jessica had joked that Davendy flies around with her ears back to help with aerodynamics, and the pair looked absolutely untouchable as the rest of the field took on the course and new time to beat.
Another ‘home’ rider, Bassem Hassan Mohammed (QAT) looked intent on bettering Jessica’s time with the big grey Argelith Squid. Shooting off at a galloping pace, and turning tightly to the fences the pair looked strong but couldn’t match the American star’s time, stopping the clock in 27.76s and finishing in fourth.
The lightning fast Nayel Nassar (EGY) put in a valiant try with Hija van Strokapelleken, but finished just 1 tenth of a second behind Bassem in 27.77s. Local rider Albert Zoer (NED) also put in a strong effort with the grey Gigolo, but couldn’t touch Jessica’s time, finishing in 25.80s, fourth tenths slower and taking second overall.
So it would be a ‘home win’ for Jessica Springsteen and Davendy S, the pair looking on phenomenal form ahead of the weekend as the world’s best take centre stage at the spiritual home of the Longines Global Champions Tour. As the American National Anthem rang out across the grounds, Jessica was proudly watched on by her parents Bruce and Patti Springsteen who applauded her win as the young talent beamed before taking Davendy on her lap of honour.
The next class is the first round of the Global Champions League, with the action kicking off at 18:45 local time.