The inaugural Central European League World Cup qualifier held at Stable Unikornis near Budapest, Hungary, on 1 - 5 May 2019 has been hailed as a great success.
The show organisation at Stable Unikornis headed by host Arie Yom-Tov spared no effort to provide top conditions for the competitors. They fulfilled the needs of the high performance dressage riders by providing top footing in the large outdoor arena where the competition took place as well as an expert panel of judges. Furthermore the international stabling area included an additional 32 permanent boxes that were especially built to accommodate stallions.
Five 5*-judges officiatied at the show alongside several 4* judges. The ground jury included Thomas Lang (AUT), Barbara Ardu (IT), Eddy de Wolff van Westerrode (NL), Maria Colliander (FIN), Eugenio Rovida (ITA, Holler Péter (DE), Enzo Truppa (IT), Orsolya Hillier (HUN), and Peter Hansághy (HUN).
The CDI-W Budapest had the stage for 90 international combinations that competed from young horse level through the youth riders classes all the way up to a 3 and 4* big tour.
Oatley Mother and Daughter Shine in Budapest
The competition was dominated by Australian Olympian Kristy Oatley and her pony riding daughter Rose. Both ladies swept the board in their respective divisions.
Kristy brought her top ride Du Soleil, a 15-year old Hanoverian gelding by De Niro, to clear the board in the Grand Prix in a field of 15 competitors. The pair scored 73.913% which was a new personal best score and a newly set Australian Grand Prix record score. Kristy went on the win the key class of the weekend, the World Cup qualifying Grand Prix freestyle, with 78.625% and cashed in the top prize of 10,000 euro purse money.
Kristy's daughter Rose, who rides for Germany, made her international show debut on FEI Dressage Pony Daddy Moon. The 12-year old was a league of her own and completed a trifecta, winning the team test with 74.190%, the individual test with 75.495% and the Kur to Music with 78.834%
In the Grand Prix Special tour, ten pairs lined up and it became a duel between German Uwe Schwanz and French Alexandre Ayache. Schwanz won the Grand Prix with 70.717% but Ayache topped the board in the Special with 70.362%.
In the Under 25 Grand Prix Hungarian Jazmin Yom-Tov set the tone and achieved a hattrick aboard Hexagon's Zodinde (by Louisville). She won the Inter II with 67.882%, the Short Grand Prix with 65.256% and the Kur to Music on 71.710. With her trainer Sjef Janssen by her side, Jazmin also went on to sweep the young riders division on the KWPN stallion Bojengel (by Uptown), twice cracking the 70% magical barrier and posting a 73.650% in the Kur to Music.
At small tour level, Thamar Zweistra and the Dutch warmblood mare Erina were unbeatable and led three times with more than 2% point advantage to the second placed pairs. Zweistra kept Hungarian Csaba Szokola and Polish Ilona Janas at bay. She triumphed in the freestyle with 74.350%.
In the junior division it was a home play for Hungarians Zsofia Lazar and Kitti Rapi who swapped top places in their freestyle.
Enjoying the Success, Looking at the Future
"I am happy to confirm that the CDI-W competition at the Unikornis Stable was an absolute success," said the proud show host Arie Yom Tov. "All judges, spectators, trainers, stewards, riders were very, very happy!
Not only the high standards for the competition itself were appreciated, but the riders also enjoyed pleasant entertainment with a special rider's party, at which food and drinks were served, upon invitation of the Unikornis stable owner.
The 2019 Open Winter Cup, an indoor competition circuit held in February and April at Stable Unikornis, as well as the CDI-W Budapest are only the first steps in a major masterplan to put Hungary on the map of the international dressage scene.
The CDI-W Budapest will return on the calendar in 2020 and the venue has also launched a bid with the FEI to host the 2020 European Championships for Children and Under 25. Their ambition extends even further as in the long scheme Unikornis wants to bring the 2021 European Dressage Championships for seniors to Hungary.
Photos © Anett Somogyvári
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