04-08-2023 door Ermelo YH

Obtaining a score of 84.2%, Vital Hit (Vitalis x Royal Dance) and Judith Sarda Mane won the small final of the Sport Pro Horses Prize for four-year-old dressage horses on the second day of the Longines FEI/WBFSH Dressage World Breeding Championships for Young Horses. The second position was claimed by Escapado (Escamillo x Bordeaux) and Riccardo Sanavio and the podium was completed by Oasis SDHW (Fontaine TN x Firestone) and Ingrid Gerritsen.

Rider Judith Saeda Mane, employed by the Gestüt Schafhof which owns the Vitalis-offspring, is very pleased with the result of the young Oldenburger horse. “Vital Hit was amazing today, he felt super fresh and was so motivated. He had a bit of tension in the transitions, simply because he wanted to do too much. Overall, it was great, I am super proud of him.” The Spanish rider anticipates a bright future for the stallion; “He is so talented; we’ll continue his training and I would love to ride the championship for five-year-old horses next year. Fingers crossed!”

Powerful walk or trot
Members of the jury Thomas Kessler and Maarten van der Heijden agreed the small final was brimming with top-quality four-year-old horses. “We have judged some lovely horses today. Powerful gaits, self-carried horses and great riding. The number one had a powerful gait and was so relaxed throughout the performance, it was truly the most complete horse this morning.” As Oldenburger stallion, bred by Raey Campell, excelled in his walk, Escapado received his top mark for the trot, a 9. “The number two showed us the best trot today, but unfortunately suffered from some tension every now and then, which primarily emerged in the walk. Nevertheless, still a horse with a lot of quality.” The final score of the four-year-old gelding bred by Andrea Puschmann and owned by Scuderio 1918, amounted to 83%.

Relaxed four-year-old horses
You could expect the young horses to be impressed by their surroundings however the combinations generally performed their tests in a remarkably relaxed manner, even keeping their heads cool during the prize giving ceremony. “If such young horses show some tension, we do not immediately mark down the gaits”, explains Maarten van der Heijden. “As long as it does not influence the transitions or cause any big mistakes, we only take it into account in the mark for submission, but not for gaits.”

Picture: Dirk Caremans