Longines EEF Series Madrid
The Spanish team is celebrating in front of its home crowd this evening after winning the Longines EEF Series Nations Cup Madrid, the fifth leg of the Longines EEF Series 2022.
Thanks to its horse and rider combinations Manuel Fernandez Saro/ Acoufina PS (0/0), Mariano Martinez Bastida/ Belano vd Wijnhoeve Z (EL/8), Santiago Nuñez Riva/ Valentino de Hus Z (0/0), Eduardo Alvarez Aznar/Full Option van’t Zand (0/0) and Chef d’Equipe Carolo Lopez-Quesada, the team’s performance was impeccable, as confirmed by the clear rounds with which it won a Nations Cup that saw ten teams at the starting gates, Belgium, France, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Chile, Mexico and the USA.
Already in the lead after the first round, Spain was only seriously threatened by Belgium, but following a clear round by Gilles Thomas riding Calleryama, last but one to go, the Spanish team reacted without hesitating with another clear by Eduardo Alvarez Aznar on Full Option van’t Zand, handing the Nations Cup to the home team.
Ireland finished third on eight faults.
This exciting Nations Cup was held at the beautiful Club de Campo Villa in Madrid in its large grass arena. The Madrid equestrian centre has always hosted top events such as CSIOs, and in 2011 it was there that the FEI Jumping European Championships were held.
As expected, the course built by Spanish chef de piste Isabel Fernandez de Canete respected the principle of ensuring that horses and riders were in the best possible conditions for jumping 5* problems while the height of the jumps remained within the limits allowed for 3* shows.
Spain’s supremacy was emphasised by the three double clear rounds ridden by Manuel Fernandez Saro, Santiago Nuñez Riva and Eduardo Alvarez Aznar. Belgium’s Gudrun Patteetil and Gilles Thomas, Ireland’s Jessica Burke, France’s Juliette Faligot, Portugal’s Duarte Seabra and Great Britain’s young Sienna Charles also rode double clear rounds.
It is worthy of note that the British team fielded three very young riders belonging to famous equestrian families, with in addition to 19-year-old Sienna Charles, who is Peter Charles’ daughter, also the 19 and 23-year-old brothers Oliver and William Fletcher, whose parents are Graham and Tina Fletcher. Another young rider with a famous equestrian surname was Belgium’s 21-year-old Thibault Philippaerts