The Grand Prix test, part of the FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ held at the venue near Budapest, determined the qualification, with Poland, Hungary, and Israel all hoping to take the single team berth on offer for Group C.
Poland ended the day on a total of 204.892 points, just ahead of Hungary, who finished on 202.152 for the home crowd. Israel finished third of the three on 192.522 points. It's been a good few weeks for Polish equestrian, with their Eventing team reaching Paris 2024 in the Baborówko qualifier last month.
Fifteen athletes and their equine partners lined up at the start to perform the Grand Prix test for a panel of international judges. With every combo executing the same movements — unlike with the Grand Prix Freestyle — the smallest details had to be right. In addition to technical proficiency, the judges were looking for suppleness, proper framing, smooth transitions, and superior communication with the horse.
A Ticket to Paris
Żaneta Skowrońska-Kozubi of Poland and Romantic P were looking strong at the top of the leaderboard near the end of the competition, with one pair left to go. Whilst Lisa Müller of Germany and Gut Wettlkam’s D’avie FRH did ultimately beat them individually with a score of 72.543 percent compared to 69.696 percent, Skowrońska-Kozubi’s marks put Poland ahead of Hungary on the quest to punch a ticket to Paris next year.
With three other Polish athletes in the top 10, Team Hungary were just a step behind and had to settle for second place. Mateusz Cichon and Herzregent 2 finished sixth (67.913 percent), Magdalena Jura and Ron took eighth place (67.283 percent), and Marta Sobierajska and Ultrablue De Massa ended in 10th (65.565 percent).
Benedek Pachi and Donna Friderika were Hungary’s highest performing duo, earning 68.804 percent and fourth place for their Grand Prix test. Anikó Komjáthy-Losonczy took seventh place aboard Dior S (67.696 percent), and Jazmin Yom Tov — the youngest athlete in the event at 21 years old — finished in ninth place with Konfucius.
Rounding out the top 10 were Franziska Stieglmaier of Germany with Samurai 504, who took the Individual bronze medal on 69.522 percent, and her compatriot Rudolf Widmann, who finished fifth aboard Ferrari OLD on 67.978 percent.
Germany’s first, third, and fifth put them in the lead in FEI Dressage Nations Cup™ competition, which continues on Sunday with the Grand Prix Freestyle.
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