Bad Honnef 2001, Last Qualifier for German Junior and Young Riders

Mon, 07/02/2001 - 00:00
2001 CDN Bad Honnef

The idyllic Insel Grafwerth on the Rhine river near the village of Bad Honnef, Germany, served once again as perfect backdrop for a serious battle between the German junior and young riders.

 The national competition at Bad Honnef was the last one of a series of qualifiers for the 2001 European Championships, held in Iserlohn (GER) July 21 - 29

Slow Fox, Fast Fox for Victory!

Hardly any surprises arose in the Young Riders' division. In both qualifier tests did the current Preis der Besten winner Nicole Giesen dominate with her Dutch bred gelding Slow Fox V (by Saros xx). Trained by Heiner Schiergen, Giesen is consider the hopeful for the individual European gold medal. Jan Andreas Viebrock covered a second and third place aboard his experienced mount Astolfi. Viebrock has been member of the German junior riders team, that won European team gold in 1999. This year Viebrock can be counted a solid member of the young riders' equipe.

Newcomer to the German Young Riders' team this year is Nadine Wirths, daughter of former German male Grand Prix champion Jurgen Wirths. Saddling the Hanoverian Atachi W, Wirths rode to a third and second place in Bad Honnef. She further strengthened her position as young rider in Germany by claiming a double victory in the Piaff Förderpreis. Julia Katharina von Platen ensured the fourth position in the German team with her Hanoverian Mocca. Last year this elegant young rider from Wietze, Germany, won the silver team medal at the European Championships in Hickstead, England.

The DOKR committee selected the following riders as reserves for the team: Dorothea Rohde with Rapino, Christian Ritter with Bernstein and Katja Weisbrod with Hazleton.

Shooting Star Torloxten On a Roll

The Bad Honnef organization, directed by judge Uwe Spenlen, was faced with difficulties during the junior rider qualifiers. On Saturday, June 30, 2001, a local rain storm descended upon the idyllic island, causing the first junior riders' qualifying test to be scratched entirely. This meant that the German junior riders only had one final test in order to qualify for their country's European championships' team. Shooting Star Lena-Alexandra Torloxten dominated her division aboard the famous Oldenburger gelding Rio's Chalston.

Juliane Brunkhorst created a comfortable second place niche position aboard La Boom. Dirk Viebrock and his Willy The Kid settled themselves in third position. Three times team gold medallist at the European Pony Championships, Kira Kroncke, was luckily enough to have scored constantly throughout the season because her performance in Bad Honnef would not have been good enough to be selected for the team. With Mont Royal, Kroncke messed up two important flying lead changes in her test and, therefore, placed sixth in Bad Honnef. Nevertheless, did the DOKR-committee find her previous performances convincing enough to select her as fourth member for the German Junior Riders' team.

Reserve combinations are Jessica and Benjamin Werndl with Nokturn and Duke and Isabell Kettner with Avandgard.

Piaff-Förderpreis: Sovereign Victory for Nadine Wirths

The premiere of the Piaff-Förderpreis at Bad Honnef Dressage 2001 received enthusiastic reactions from the German dressage world. The Piaff-Förderpreis is a special competition in which twelve riders under the age of 25 are selected to compete two tests, an S-level test (PSG) and a special Grand Prix. The German Equestrian Federation created this formula in order to stimulate rider to make the difficult transition from Prix St Georges to Grand Prix level.

Nadine Wirths from St. Johann, Germany, won both the Prix St Georges and the special Grand Prix aboard her father's schoolmaster Souveran W. Second place was covered by Cora Jacobs with Granat, while the judges put Aachen citizen Jana Kun on Metternich third.

German team trainer Holger Schmezer was very pleased with the results of the first Piaff-Förderpreis. "Like expected, the Piaff-Förderpreis in Bad Honnef was a huge success. The participants had to ride a simpler version of the Grand Prix and did not have to compete against top combinations like Capellmann, Salzgeber or Werth. For the spectators, the Preis is interesting too as the class is limited to only 12 combinations and each ride is commented on afterwards by the judges," Schmezer explained.

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