Anky van Grunsven Victorious at 2009 CDI-W Amsterdam

Sun, 01/25/2009 - 00:00
2009 CDI-W Amsterdam

The celebration of the 50th edition of Jumping Amsterdam, its fifth anniversary, received extra acclaim by the surprising victory of the Dutch triple individual gold medallist Anky van Grunsven aboard her black stallion Painted Black (by Gribaldi x Ferro).

The environment for the sixth World Cup Qualifier in the Western European League was a sell-out house of 5000, a field of participating riders with the strength of the Final already and a growth in prize money for dressage.

Neither Dutch Adelinde Cornelissen could celebrate the win after her hattrick winning the World Cup qualifiers in Stockholm, London and Mechelen, nor Grand Prix-winner Isabell Werth with Warum Nicht FRH. Anky van Grunsven aboard Painted Black was almost astonished herself when the score of 81,25% appeared on the board, a record score for the impressive black stallion.

“This was the very first time that Painted Black showed in the arena what he is capable of and what he shows at home," Van Grunsven said. "He so often is not with me in the big arena’s. Last summer I could celebrate the win in Lingen aboard Painted with 80%, but this test in Amsterdam even went better now. Although we had an expensive mistake in a pirouette yesterday and had to leave the Grand Prix victory to Isabell Werth, I already was most pleased with Painted as he really was working for me and cooperative. Today he again proved this. We only had a small mistake in the two tempi changes, so improvements can still be made. However the biggest improvement is that Painted has gained power and strength and that’s what makes him better.”

Painted Black has never done his piaffes so energetically and powerfully in the show arena before. Anky van Grunsven signed a contract at the Mechelen World Cup qualifier short after Christmas with her new sponsor Cavalor, a horse feed producer. They supplied her with individual diets for all her horses.

“This might be the cause for the visible improvement of Painted, as my horses lose weight on their bellies and gain spirit and energy”, Anky concluded smiling. The only problem for her now seems the FEI World Cup Dressage Regulations that has the rule that last year’s winner is automatically qualified after having showed in two qualifiers.

“My schedule is to compete with Salinero in the last qualifier in March in ‘s-Hertogenbosch only and not to show in Neumünster or Göteborg. I am not going to compete unless Salinero is top fit and he still needs more time. He has had a long holiday. Probably I can get a request for a wild card, otherwise the sad truth is that I’m not competing in Las Vegas," Anky concluded. 

Dutch Adelinde Cornelissen faced major problems in the Grand Prix yesterday when her horse Parzival was disturbed by noise from the crowds and light from the cameras and got scared. She was not able to finish her test and had to retire.

Isabell Werth had some major problems in her ride today. At the start of her Freestyle Warum Nicht FRH lost the trotting rhythm n the first half pass and cantered instead. Isabell replied to this mistake by riding less energetically as she usually does, which caused more mistakes, a big mistake in the one tempi changes and a little one in the two tempi’s. The result was the runner up position.

Isabell said: “My ‘Hannes’ was better than me today. I don’t know why I disturbed him in the half pass, probably I came in with my aids too fast. Than the mistakes in the changes occurred. It happens. Next time better!” Isabell Werth plans to compete Satchmo in Neumünster and ‘s-Hertogenbosch. After that she will decide which horse to bring to the FEI World Cup Dressage Final in Las Vegas.

Olympian Hans Peter Minderhoud was not very satisfied with his third place. The mare had wonderful extensions and half passes, however Hans Peter had his hands full. “She is a bit in season and was not too easy to handle. Probably it looked good, however I have had a better feeling in London for example”, he said.

Kyra Kyrklund also had a better feeling in London. She said: “Max improved in strength and he really takes me. Unfortunately today he left me alone in a pirouette. Too bad. We all play with the limits and this can happen.”

Apart from Anky van Grunsven the most happy Dutch rider was Jeannette Haazen. She was playing with the limits  with her big Nartan as well but succeeded. No single step failed and the piaffes were performed as never before. “This was my best test ever!”, the small Jeannette smiled. She recovered from a very bad ca accident in the beginning of last year’s World Cup season. “It all fitted like a T. A big reward for our perseverance.”

Chair of the judges Wim Ernes praised the competitors as they gave the judges an exciting time to judge. “No one of us could guess in forehand who was going to win with this first class field. It was great fun to judge!”

Show director Rogier van Iersel also praised the riders. “The riders make the competition and they took care of a thrilling spectacle. It’s the nicest present show organisers can receive so I really want to thank them for that!”

FEI press releases edited by Eurodressage
Photo copyrighted: Luiphoto - courtesy Jumping Amsterdam

Back to the 2009 World Cup Index