Australian wonder woman Edwina Tops-Alexander galloped her way to victory in the seventh leg of the Longines FEI World Cup in La Coruna, Spain.
There were eight riders from eight nations in the jump-off, but the three-time Olympian out paced them all with the lovely mare California.
The pair galloped from the very start and was almost two seconds faster than Austria’s Max Kuhner in second place.
“I did one too many strides from fence one to two, but that just made me go faster the rest of the way!” said Edwina. “I wasn’t convinced I was quick enough to win, I thought maybe I’d be second if I was lucky.”
Manuel Fernandez Saro was third with Cuidam, much to the delight of the home crowd, while Ireland’s Denis Lynch was fourth. Robert Whitaker was sixth after Catwalk IV had an unlucky pole in the jump-off.
Edwina and California both had a recent break, as the 43-year-old rider gave birth to her daughter Chloe at the end of July. She only stopped competing in March and the pair returned to the ring in early September.
“She’s an amazing horse, and when we both went back to work I came strong and she did too,” said a delighted Edwina.
World Cup Dressage
FEI World Cup Dressage saw another female victory, when Dorothee Schneider won the fourth leg in Salzburg, Austria.
Dorothee was riding the 11-year-old gelding Sammy Davis Jr. who only stepped up to Grand Prix level in March of this year. Their tango-themed test scored them an impressive 83.415.
Germany’s Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and Unee BB were second on 81.565, with Denmark’s Daniel Bachmann-Andersen and Blue Hors Zack third on 80.375.
The next leg of the World Cup Jumping and Dressage is at the London International Horse Show at Olympia.
FEI World Cup Jumping: La Coruna premieres on 14 December at 7pm
FEI World Cup Dressage: Salzburg premieres on 15 December at 7pm on