Going back in first in a ten-horse jump-off for the $62,938 Grand Prix of Wiesbaden, Rene Tebbel knew what he had to do. And he did it, setting a blistering pace that no-one else could catch to take the top check at the feature class of the Wiesbaden CSI, June 2-5 in Wiesbaden, Germany.
“It is a long time since I have been in a jump-off of a grand prix!” Tebbel said. “I said to myself that I should give everything, since I never know when I would get this chance again. Farina is a horse who does an especially good job in large arenas with grass footing like at Aachen, Hickstead or Wiesbaden. I have been already second with her in the Grand Prix of Wiesbaden and also third with another horse, but it is great to win it this time.”
They all chased to catch Tebbel’s time of 49.84 seconds aboard the For Pleasure-daughter Farina. Brazil’s Bernardo Alves even made a risky jump over a small tree, taking the shortest way possible to chase Tebbel. But Alves–a student of Rodrigo Pessoa–could only manage second place (50.37 seconds) on his Holsteiner stallion Canturo.
Rodrigo Pessoa himself had a refusal at the water jump in the initial round aboard Gibson and did not make it for the jump-off.
And while Tebbel stole the spotlight on the last day of the CSI, all the talk over the weekend had been about 55-year-old Thomas Frühmann. Frühmann notched three victories in the first three international classes at Wiesbaden: aboard Limited Edition he won the opening class and the six-bar competition, and he rode The Sixth Sense to win the Championat of Hessen, which was the second leg of the Riders Tour.
In each of following classes, Frühmann–the 1992 FEI World Cup Final winner–finished in the money, and was named leading rider. Frühmann has experienced a renaissance of sorts in his career, having been out of the top echelons of the sport for a decade.
But at Wiesbaden, he rode the horse that has brought him back into the limelight, The Sixth Sense, into third in the Riders Tour class. He and The Sixth Sense qualified for the ten-horse jump-off of the Grand Prix of Wiesbaden but had bad luck there.
Frühmann looked to be on his way into the lead in the jump-off when the Westphalian gelding slipped on the grass footing in the turn to the second-to-last fence, almost falling and nearly unseating his rider. Frühmann was lucky enough to hang on but had the next two fences down.
Peter Wylde flew the American flag in the grand prix with third place (see sidebar), but Lauren Hough was making her Wiesbaden debut. With one rail down in the first round of the grand prix aboard Clasiko, she finished in 17th. In the Riders Tour class, Hough and Clasiko took eighth, while Wylde and Quo Vadis were 12th with one rail down in the first round.
Also competing at Wiesbaden for the first time was Georgina Bloomberg, who had 12 faults in the grand prix on Cim Cristo.
In the $50,336 Schlosspark Prize, the second leg of the Riders Tour, Heinrich-Hermann Engemann and Aboyeur took victory. As the last starters in the ten-horse jump-off, they shaved the turns and stopped the clock at 37.76 seconds.
Frühmann had set the leading time aboard The Sixth Sense, besting Gregory Wathelet on Loriot by more than a second. But just one rider later, the lead changed hands again when Germany’s Holger Wulschner rode Clausen even faster. Engemann now leads the Riders Tour standings, tied with Toni Hassmann, who won the Derby at Hamburg (Germany).