Gothenburg, Sweden – With ground to cover, the U.S. combinations headed into Friday evening’s Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final II looking to improve their positions in the second round of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Final. Round II saw a shift in the leaderboard, and Madden and Breitling LS jumped a commanding and nearly flawless round to place fifth in the class and fourth overall.
After jumping a clear round on a time of 76.41 seconds, Madden (Cazenovia, N.Y.) and Abigail Wexner’s 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood stallion headed into the jump-off with seven other top combinations. Their jump-off time of 34.75 seconds was the fastest of the round but a rail at the final jump cost them the double-clear. Sitting on just three penalties, and tied for fourth with Belgium’s Niels Bruynseelsand Olivier Philippaerts, as well as Switzerland’s Martin Fuchs, Madden and Breitling LS sit less than one rail from the current leader headed into Sunday’s final.
“[Breitling LS] felt great in the warm-up and felt great going in. I have a horse that is on his game,” said Madden. “We had a little touch at the first fence, and I think after that he kicked into gear and was amazing. I think this is one of the more difficult second phases [I’ve seen]. Yesterday was a little bigger than normal, and today was quite difficult – big and technical. I was tense; we need to do a little catching up, so this is good for me – so fun!”
All five of the U.S. combinations improved upon their Round I positions and will move into Sunday’s final phase of competition. Moving from 29th to 20th was fellow U.S. combination Georgina Bloomberg (New York, N.Y.) and Chameur 137, Purple Road, LLC’s 11-year-old Westphalian gelding. They jumped an almost perfect second round and will head into Sunday with 17 penalties. Competing in their first World Cup Final, Eve Jobs (Los Altos Hills, Calif.) and Venue d’Fees des Hazalles, her 14-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare, moved from 27th to 22nd, overall, with 18 penalties.
The 2018 World Cup Final runner-up Devin Ryan (Long Valley, N.J.) and Cooper, his 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, advanced from 25th to 23rd on 20 penalties. Additionally, in their World Cup Final debut, Kelli Cruciotti (Elizabeth, Colo.) and Hadja van Orshof, her 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare, put in another solid round to advance their position from 19th to 18th and a total of 15 penalties.
Jumping concludes on Sunday with the Longines FEI World Cup Jumping Final III. Watch it live on FEI TV beginning at 8:00 a.m. EST.
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