“I’m a lucky guy," said Steffen Peters with a huge smile on his face. The American had every reason to be so happy, after five victories out of six starts at the CDI4* in Leudelange/LUX went to his credit.
With his top horse Rosamunde he won the Grand Prix and Grand Prix freestyle under floodlight with their second best freestyle score ever: 80,55 %.
“Rosi handles the music now much better than before we went into our competition break for several months. She also got quite used to floodlight in the tournament series at the beginning of the year in the American Wellington.”
He also had only positive things to say about his other double Grand-Prix winner Suppenkasper.
“I still was a bit careful in the Grand Prix. But I was able to ride much more forward in the Special. He just gives you this great feeling in piaffes, passages, pirouettes, extended walk." According to Steffen the mistake in the change was his own fault. “I was a bit too daring.”
He and “Mops”, Suppenkasper’s nickname, are still getting to know each other. The only 10 year-old KWPN gelding ,who just won the Special with 73,93 %, was sold by Helen Langehanenberg in July 2017 to his sponsor, Akiko Yamazaki.
When talking about getting to know one another, his small tour ride Donavan fits right in. Although the Prix St Georges was still touch and go, in the Intermediaire I the pair came together and Steffen scored his fifth victory of the weekend. The ten year-old KWPN gelding, who has so far been shown by Akiko Yamazaki, was presented by Steffen only for the second time. “Since I didn’t know exactly if he would get hot, I was a bit cautious in the St. Georges, which I didn’t have to," he explained.
So how will it continue with the World Equestrian Games in his home country? “Rosamunde and Suppenkasper will be going to the training camp shortly before the Championship upon request of our national coach, Robert Dover”, though the order is already clear: Rosamunde is the number 1, Suppenkasper the reserve. With Donavan, Steffen Peters is planning to go to the Pan-Am Games next year in Peru.
Leudelange was also a very good place to be for local heroes Sascha Schulz and Nicolas Wagner: Sascha Schulz presented a thrilling freestyle with his Lusitano stallion Dragao which scored 77,81% The judges ranked them second with a new personal best.
“Dragao loves the show and it’s just so much fun, especially as we are becoming more and more consistent with our performances," Sascha Schulz explained happily. Third place in the freestyle went to the Portuguese Maria Caetano, who also saddled a Lusitano, Coroado (by the Luxembourg owned Olympic stallion Rubi).
Nicolas Wagner, who had previously been victorious at the CDI4* Achleiten and CDI-W Mariakalnok, got fifth place in the Special with his Quarter Back Junior. Danish Victoria Vallentin and Ludwig Der Sonnenkönig came second (71,23%), while Belgian Fanny Verliefden on Indoctro v/d Steenblock took third place (70,80%).
“We made a few preventable mistakes. Maybe I just wanted it to be a bit too good on my home grounds,” said the 26 year-old Wagner.
Christof Umbach, director of the competition in Leudelange, had a positive feeling of he first CDI4*: “Our expectation of the feedback from the riders and the audience were exceeded by far. We were also very happy about all of the helpers who made this six-day event possible. Total positive feedback also came from the riders, officials and sponsors.”
Photos © Astrid Appels - No reproduction allowed
Eurodressage was on the scene in Leudelange on Friday to photograph. If you are interested in prints or files for social media, send us an email.