Freund strikes again in Geneva

Freund strikes again in Geneva

Germany’s Michael Freund has won his second FEI World Cup competition this season during the 45th edition of the Concours Hippique International de Genève. But it was not an easy win this time!

In the first round it was Dutchman Koos de Ronde who passed the finish line three seconds faster than Freund. In the winning round however, the 29-year old 2004 Dutch champion gave in his advantage to Freund by knocking over an obstacle element, which cost him five penalty seconds and the first place. Switzerland’s Werner Ulrich drove his team of Swiss warm bloods to the third place in front of his home crowd.

Michael Freund was pleased with today’s competition: «It was very interesting to see that the first five competitors all remained within 10 seconds of each other. I feel that my fellow competitors are getting closer and closer each time and I don’t know how long I can keep them of my back,” explains a grinning Freund, who was very pleased to be able to get the Geneva public enthusiastic.

Koos de Ronde knew that he had to go for it in the World Cup competition as he saw the other drivers put the speed up in today’s course. «I could feel in my horses that it was the third competition day today. My team went super and I had a good feeling all the way through. Unfortunately I came too close to one of the obstacles in the winning round, which cost me the victory. But I go home as a satisfied man anyhow,” comments De Ronde, who used his 21-year old veteran horse Dingo in the lead.

Werner Ulrich had deliberately picked his World Cup events in the second half of the season in order to give his horses, of which three out of the four are used both indoor and outdoor, a rest. During his first World Cup competition, the 46-year old driver from Bäriswil decided to drive a secure first round which qualified him for the winning round. Knowing he had nothing to loose, he went for it but knocked three balls down and came third.

Second wild card driver Fredrik Persson came fourth and has climbed to the third place in the standings. Daniel Würgler, Stefan Klay and Jozsef Bozsik also showed very nice sport in the Palexpo arena, but had to be pleased with place five to seven respectively. Germany’s course designer Falk Böhnisch had designed a fast course including some challenging elements such as a water splash, a small hill and a bridge. As an experiment in the warm up competition, small holders with big plastic balls to improve visibility for the spectators and judges replaced the regular orange cones and yellow balls. The plastic balls turned out to be too light and although the crowd loved it, the traditional cones and balls were used in the World Cup competition.

Results CAI-W Geneva:
1. Michael Freund (Ger) 259.98
2. Koos de Ronde (Ned) 262.39
3. Werner Ulrich (Sui) 278.38
4. Fredrik Persson (Swe) 142.21
5. Daniël Würgler (Sui) 143.79
6. Stefan Kläy (Sui) 146.84
7. Jozsef Bozsik (Hun) 169.36

Classification after 4 of 7 events:
1. Michael Freund (Ger) 20
2. Zoltan Lazar (Hun) 17
3. Fredrik Persson (Swe) 13
4. Tomas Eriksson (Swe) 12
5. Koos de Ronde (Ned) 10
6. Daniël Würgler (Sui) 8
7. Max Dangel (Ger) 7
7. Ysbrand Chardon (Ned) 7
9. Jozsef Dobrovitz (Hun) 6
10. Werner Ulrich (Sui) 5

Categories: Driving, News