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Austrian quadruple success in Grand Prix Special

What an ending of the 24th international four-star dressage show in Achleiten (Upper Austria)! Austria’s Olympic team riders competed on a high level on Sunday in the castle park arena for the victory in the Grand Prix Special, the most difficult dressage test in the world.

In the end, Grand Prix winner Christian Schumach was again ahead with his Te Quiero SF. The Carinthian and the 10-year-old Holstein gelding owned by Franziska Fries scored 72.021 percent. A wafer-thin 0.106 points behind was Timna Zach from Styria with 9-year-old Farant. Third place went to Belinda Weinbauer (Burgenland) with Fustanella OLD (70.66) followed by Astrid Neumayer (Upper Austria) and Zap Zap (70.106) – a margin of only 0.554 percent.

Winner Christian Schumach was thrilled with the performance of his sport partner, "Te Quiero is in outstanding form, he showed his fighting spirit again in this difficult test. The few mistakes were my fault. I am really proud of this young horse!“

Until the compulsory show in Achleiten (June 11-13), where Austria's dressage elite will be competing for three starting places for Tokyo, the Carinthian already has a plan, "He loves to ride out a lot in the open country. We don't have to practice much anymore, because he's totally got the program!“

Second-placed Timna Zach was annoyed about the mistakes in the last segment which probably cost her the victory, “We were doing so well, he was really cool to ride and then I wanted a bit too much and he cantered off. My mistake! And that’s what I’m going to tell him next week before we come back to Achleiten: that there are my mistakes and not his. But for now, he’s allowed to let off steam in the paddock for two days.“

Belinda Weinbauer was also satisfied after finishing 3rd with her 16-year-old mare Fustanella OLD, “That was a beautiful, clear round! We’ll keep up the good work and look forward to the show in two weeks.“ The three-time former national champion is relaxed about the Olympic qualification, “It is great that we have so many good people and such great horses in the Austrian dressage team. I am very proud to be part of this team. I see the results, but I don’t bury my head in the sand. I keep working and look forward to the next chance.“

N°4 FEI Grand Prix Special

1. Christian Schumach (AUT), Te Quiero SF 72,021 Prozent

2. Timna Zach (AUT), Farant 71,915

3. Belinda Weinbauer (AUT), Fustanella OLD 70,66

4. Astrid Neumayer (AUT), Zap Zap 70,106

5. Franziska Stieglmaier (GER), DSP Dauphin 70,058

6. Katharina Haas (AUT), Let it be 69,617

7. Florian Bacher (AUT), Sinclair Jason 68,043

8. Franziska Fries (AUT), Atomic 66,255

9. Amanda Hartung (AUT), Fürst Flipper 64,851

10. Gabriele H.-Kiefer (CYP), Cyprus Ophelia 60,298


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