The man to watch in the Grand Prix later today is Belgian rider Koen Vereecke. The rider is in a fantastic shape and just won his third class of the show with Diadarco van Evendael Z, the Giacataro Prize.
Koen rode his Diamant de Semilly x Darco gelding to a double clear in the course designed by Louis Koninckx, a CSI3* Table A over two phases. The rider performed a superfast round and stopped the clock at 19.64 sec., more than a second faster than Dutch rider Kim Emmen.
“The competition is really goin well, I have won three classes with this horse and Glasgow MB also performs really well: I obtained the third place on the first day with him and the second one in yesterday’s ranking class.
“It went really fast in this class and I knew I had to watch out for Hendrik Denutte and Lieven Devos, so I thought I might try and have a go at a 19 sec. time. And look, it worked!”
Diadarco van Evendael Z is a relatively young horse and hasn’t been competiting at this level for long, but he is evolving well:
“I have had him since he was 6,5 years old. At seven, he was not yet ready to compete in the young horse classes, so I started him in the CSI1*. By the end of his seven years, he had won a 1* Grand Prix. He won the Sunday class here last year too, by the way. Last spring, he won three classes in Ghent. I took him to several 1m50 classes this year. At the beginning, we feared he might not have the required performance, but he acquired it by riding on time.”
“I think the fact that I took short turns made a difference for this class. What certainly did was the fact that I risked to take only 6 strides on the last line.”
Koen will ride Jativia in the Grand Prix this afternoon. If everything goes well, he will confirm his title of best rider of the show:
” the only thing that could go wrong now is me not qualifying for the jump off while Kim Emmen doest. She is a close runner-up for the title. Last year, I had the fastest time in the Grand Prix with Jativia and obtained the sixth spot. I hope I will at least ride the jump off now.”
The second place was for Kim Emmen and Fiolita, who rode a clear in a 20.84 sec. time. Jeroen De Winter obtained the third spot after a clear in a 20.92 sec. time.
You can watch the competition via Clipmyhorse, so don’t miss this last day and click here to follow live!.
The CSI2* Grand Prix has started now and will be followed by an oldtimershow. The climax of the day will be the CSI3* Grand Prix at 3.30 pm. We will end Flanders Horse Event 2018 with the Battle of the Clubs final tonight.
Text: Kim Schoukens – Ekimedias
Picture: Kristof Wellekens – Fotoroyal