Girl power was in full force in Florida over the weekend, with an all-female top four in the $372,000 Suncast CSI 5* Grand Prix at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF).
It was Germany’s Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum who won the class with her rising star, Fibonacci 17.
Out of 45 starters, just six made it through to the jump-off, with two riders achieving a double clear.
Israel’s Danielle Goldstein and Carisma were the first pair to produce a second faultless round, in a time of 37.86sec. Next in was Meredith, who took almost one second off Danielle’s time to cross the finish line in 36.96sec.
It looked like Beezie Madden, who was last to go, would snatch victory from Meredith with a very fast time of 35.65sec. ButCortes Cknocked the final fence to come fourth.
“I have to say, I expected Beezie to beat me, particularly with Cortes,” said Meredith. “He is her best horse, and I was really surprised when he hit the last fence. Sometimes the luck goes your way, and it was with me tonight.”
Jessica Springsteen (USA) finished just in front of her US team mate, riding Peter Charles’ former Olympic partner Vindicat W. They produced the fastest four faults (35.40sec) to take third place.
Later in the week (25 Febuary),Ben Maher came first and fourth in the $25,000 Nutrena Jumper Classic. Ben won the class riding Contigo, a nine-year-old he has produced himself.
His other ride in the class wasWyndmont’s Valinski S, which he only started competing this winter.