Jeroen Dubbeldam claims European crown as Dutch dominance continues.

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A clean sweep for the Dutch in the show-jumping at the European Championships in Aachen.
After taking the win in the team show-jumping, in front of the hosts Germany, a superb Jeroen Dubbeldam rode to victory in the individual category to win the gold and add to his World Championship crown.
Going into the European Championships, there were big expectations from the Germans but the only gold medals for the host nation have come in the vaulting and driving disciplines.
Instead, the hosts have had to settle for 9 silvers across dressage, show-jumping (team), reining, driving and vaulting.
In what was another surprising result, the best ranked German in the individual show-jumping was Ahlmann, well short of a podium finish in 7th with his mount Taloubet z (4 penalties in round 1).
Focusing back to the winner, or should we say winners, because Jeroen Dubbeldam and Holland have once again confirmed that they are the nation to beat and not just in show-jumping. The Dutch were competitive and battling for the medals also in the dressage, driving and reining disciplines too.
It’s not just another success for the Dutch riders, but also for the breeding sector in Holland, which once again confirms its status as one of the best in the world. In fact, World Breeding For Sport Horses have ranked the Dutch KWPN studbook as the current number one for both dressage and show-jumping.
Moreover, the newly crowned European champion horse Zenith SFN (last year’s KWPN Horse of the Year), was bred and raised in Holland at the Den Ham stud farm owned by the Voort family.
Remarkably, Zenith SFN and Jeroen Dubbeldam collected just 1 penalty at the European Championships, and yesterday’s error in the final round was the first after only scoring clears in the previous rounds and days.
Belgian rider Gregory Wathelet with Holsteiner stallion Conrad De Hus meanwhile rode to a fully deserved silver medal and the two are a horse and rider combination that have demonstrated an excellent understanding and that over the course of the games amassed just 4 penalties; all in the second day of competition.
To continue, France managed to get a rider onto the podium as Simon Delestre and mount Ryan des Hayettes secured the bronze medal in Germany. Following behind in fourth was fellow French rider Penelope Lèprevost, who had led the provisional standings after the first stage of the show-jumping with BWP mare Flora de Mariposa. The French pair ended the European Championships in Aachen with 8 penalties.
Holland’s Jur Vrieling with VDL zirocco Blue was 5th, Spain’s Sergio Alvarez Moya on Carlo 273 was 6th, but the real surprise finish in Germany was Andreas Schou from Denmark, 28 years of age and son to a former rider, ending the European Championships in the top ten with a 9th place finish.
7th Christian Ahlmann GER Taloubet Z
8th Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum GER Fibonacci 17
9th Andreas Schou DEN Lenardo Der Kleine
10th Kevin Staut FRA Reveur de Hurtebise
The only Italian meanwhile to qualify for the final stage of the show-jumping was Piergiorgio Bucci with Catwalk Z. With 13 penalties, he ended up in 13th place. However despite Bucci’s respectable finish, and the excellent displays earlier in the championships from Daniele Augusto Da Rios after a careful and detailed preparation for his jumper For Passion, Italy came away from the games with the major disappointment of missing out on the main objective: Olympic qualification.
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