Patrice Delaveau (FRA) took a stunning win in the final speed class of the Longines Global Champions Tour of Rome ahead of home favourites Lorenzo de Luca (ITA) and Emanuele Gaudiano (ITA) who finished 2nd and 3rd respectively.
Crowds flocked once more to the Stadio dei Marmi to watch the final class of the sensational Longines Global Champions Tour of Rome and were rewarded with two of their top riders taking the final podium places in a nail biting speed competition which had everyone on the edge of their seats.
51 riders started Uliano Vezzani’s up to height 1.50m jump-off class, which saw the faults well distributed across each of the 13 first round fences. With the final line causing a few problems due to a challenging distance down to the last, and a double of verticals across the middle also catching a few of the top-class riders out, a total of 14 went through to the jump-off.
First to step up to the challenge was Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum (GER) with the 10-year-old grey gelding Fibonacci, who threw down the gauntlet with a clear round in an excellent time of 37.23s. Local rider Emanuele Gaudiano (ITA) thrilled the home crowd to take over the lead midway through the jump-off, but this was short lived when next to go, Patrice Delaveau (FRA), made the most of the long gallop to the last, setting a time of 35.46s with the gorgeous Lacrimoso 3 HDC. Those who followed valiantly tried to catch Patrice, including Friday’s winner Simon Delestre (FRA) with the speedy Chesall, who eventually finished in 5th, but Lacrimoso 3 HDC’s time proved unbeatable. Lorenzo de Luca (ITA) looked as though he could challenge Patrice’s lead, however was pipped to the post by just three tenths of a second, finishing in 2nd place overall.
Next week will see the world’s best take to the stage once more to battle it out in the spectacular venue of Vienna for the 14th round in the 2015 Championship. Another jewel in the crown of glittering destinations which make up this showjumping Tour, Vienna is home to many high-profile organisations, including the United Nations and Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. This centre of European music has been voted one the most world's most liveable cities and consistently ranks highly as a world centre of cultural innovation.
The Longines Global Champions Tour of Vienna will see the ranking battle intensify as the circuit gallops towards the final in Doha. Last season saw Germany's Marcus Ehning and his star ride Plot Blue take the Grand Prix win. For a full schedule of events, please click here.