21 september 2009

Dutch strike again in Donaueschingen

Another Dutch win in the last qualifying competition for the FEI World Cup™ Driving season 2009-2010. Theo Timmerman started off with the fourth place in dressage, won the marathon and kept his lead after a double clear round in the cones competition. Timmerman’s compatriot Koos de Ronde came second, ahead of USA’s Tucker Johnson.

1 Ysbrand CHARDON NED 87
2 Boyd EXELL AUS 85
3 Koos DE RONDE NED 78
6 Christoph SANDMANN GER 63
8 Werner ULRICH SUI 57
9 Daniel WÜRGLER SUI 52

1. Theo Timmerman (Putten) 118,69
2. Koos de Ronde (Zwartewaal) 123,75
3. Tucker Johnson (Usa) 129,26
4. Tomas Eriksson (Swe) 131,32
5. Jozsef Dobrovitz (Hun) 131,79
6. Ludwig Weinmayr (Ger) 136,87
7. Werner Ulrich (Sui) 142,05
8. Harry de Ruyter (Kessel) 144,37
9. Fredrik Persson (Swe) 145,10
10. Georg von Stein (Ger) 145,50

Click here for the full results.

Theo Timmerman (Ned): “I enjoyed winning in Donaueschingen. I also won in Riesenbeck and these two events have a heavy marathon in common. Since my horses need a proper warming up for the marathon, this marathon suited them perfectly. I have been driving these horses since the start of this season and they are improving every time. I hope I will be able to test some more new horses next season in order to get the perfect team together for Kentucky.”

Koos de Ronde (Ned): “I was a little disappointed with my dressage score of the French judge, he gave me five points less than the other judges. I spoke to the judges afterwards and they all agreed that I drove a good test. I decided to go for it in the marathon and in the cones. The marathon went very well, I drove exactly the routes I had decided on before. The obstacle driving competition went very well as well, my team is very good in the cones lately which they proofed in the nations competitions this season and in Donaueschingen.”

Tucker Johnson (Usa): “My team is getting together well at the moment. I will definitely compete in Europe next season to prepare for the WEG in Kentucky, this is where the biggest competition will be. I will start at the Test Event in Kentucky in two weeks time with a different team, which I have back home in the US.

Nesvacil is a 50-year-old professional carriage driver from Morarsky Krumlov in the Czech Republic. Nesvacil is sponsored by Stud farm Favory Benice, a private breeder of Old Kladruber horses with which Nesvacil competes. Nesvacil grew up in an agricultural environment where carriage driving has been a tradition in his family. Nesvacil has been active in the equestrian sport since his childhood and started driving in 1980 with a horse pair.
Nesvacil won the World Cup Qualifying competitions in Fabiansebestyen, Hungary, and Nebanice, Czech Republic, and came second in Altenfelden in Austria this summer. His son Jiri Nesvacil junior is a successful international pair driver, who came 17th at the World Pair Driving Championships in Kecskemét this year.

After the competition in Donaueschingen the World Cup standings were immediately updated and the Top Ten drivers were announced. The Netherlands are well represented in the World Cup again with three drivers; IJsbrand Chardon, Koos de Ronde and Theo Timmerman. Werner Ulrich and Daniel Würgler represent Switzerland in the 2009-2010 World Cup. Title defender Boyd Exell from Australia, Tomas Eriksson from Sweden and Jozsef Dobrovitz from Hungary will all battle again in the prestigious World Cup series. These drivers have all competed in the World Cup before. Newcomer Jiri Nesvacil from the Czech Republic was welcomed as tenth driver.

Johnson’s horses are stabled with German driving Champion Michael Freund to prepare for the WEG 2010 in Kentucky. For Johnson, Donaueschingen is his first international performance since the World Championships in Beesd 2008. The American top driver won the dressage driving his team of German bred horses and the 9-year-old mare Shakira, which was led to Johnson by German four-in-hand driver Michael Brauchle. Johnson came 8th in the marathon and finished 3rd overall.

Theo Timmerman won the marathon despite a small incident. The 2006 bronze team medallist tipped over after he passed the finish line of the fifth obstacle at high speed. Driver, horses and grooms remained unharmed and could quickly continue their marathon round. Because the incident happened after Theo had left the obstacle, it did not influence his marathon results. Theo drove a nice, fluent and controlled marathon with his team of German bred geldings. The seven obstacles in Donaueschingen could be described as tough with many sharp turns and technical lines. German course designer Dr. Hartmut Kaufmann and his team were busy all day repairing the posts in the obstacles of which some can do with a complete facelift.
Timmerman’s compatriot Koos de Ronde also drove a superb marathon, which was a pleasure to watch. De Ronde came second just behind Timmerman, who has taken over the lead of USA’s Tucker Johnson.

– 25 four-in-hand drivers from 9 nations competed
– the field included 2 (former) World Champions: Tomas Eriksson (SWE) and Werner Ulrich (SUI)
– eldest competitor Franz Schnider (SUI), age 67
– youngest competitor Axel Olin (SWE), age 23