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Flawless Dutch triumph in their own arena

17 May 2024

The Dutch national team won the heavily-flagged Longines EEF Series event in Peelbergen. The Dutch event was a qualifier for the Western Region of the European Nations Cup Series. Its grand finale will take place on 8 September in Warsaw during the Warsaw Jumping CSIO4* at the Służewiec Racecourse.

The third stop of this year’s Longines EEF Series was Peelbergen. Just like last year, the Western Region Qualifiers were held on the Dutch arena.

Thirteen teams showed up at the start of the competition in the Netherlands. Competing for points in the European Nations Cup ranking were: Belgium, Spain, France, Great Britain, Ireland, Luxembourg and Portugal. In addition, teams from Norway, Australia, Sweden, Canada, the Netherlands and the United States competed in the Netherlands. However, they did not fight for the Longines EEF Series points.

The first part of the competition was extremely evenly contested. Halfway through, four teams had zero faults. The Irish were in the leader’s seat, due to the best time, but just behind them were the Canadians and the Americans. Behind the podium were the representatives of the hosts. Fifth place, already with four penalty points, was occupied by the French, who enjoyed victory in Peelbergen last year.

The second turn showed who came to the Netherlands in really good form. Both the Canadians and the Dutch made no mistake and finished their runs with zero faults. The Irish had eight penalty points, so it was between the hosts and the visitors from North America that the final battle for victory was played. The Netherlands were represented in the showdown by Michael Greeve, while the Canadian team selected Kyle Timm for the task. Unfortunately, the Canadian finished his ride with one fault, leaving the hosts to enjoy the victory in Peelbergen.

Neither the Dutch nor the Canadians, however, were involved in the battle for the Longines EEF Series Western Region points. The Irish, who finished third in the competition, thus took the lead in the standings. The team, which included world number eleven athlete Daniel Coyle in its line-up, was unable to keep a clean slate from the first round. Two mistakes made in the second return meant that Ireland finished with eight penalty points and had to settle for the lowest step of the podium. Next in the regional European Nations Cup standings were the Spanish (8 points) and the French (8 points).

The next stop of the Longines EEF Series will be Athens. It is there, at the end of May, that the Southern Region qualifiers will be held. We have already seen the players competing in this group during the inaugural event in Gorla Minore. Thus, the competition in Greece will determine the first five teams to be seen at the semi-finals in Budapest.

Full results HERE

Photography: Matilde Tarchiani / European Equestrian Federation