Against a stunning backdrop and finally glorious weather, the third race in the Combined Riders mix brought no major changes to the medal line-up. The only exciting thing was the French team’s attack on Germany, which was enthusiastically supported by the spectators. But our neighbors were able to withstand even the loss of their superstar Michael Jung on the day off the road. Sandra Offard jumped into the breach with two zero-fault laps with her mighty Wymond du Matz and Christoph Wahler with the Carjaden S. And the 50-year-old mother of three Malin Hansen-Hadtop, Holsteiner Carlitos Quidditch, who has been regarded as a climber in recent years, scored only 6 points. The team silver was followed by an individual bronze for the increasingly reliable Sandra Offart.
In the end, two zeros wasn’t enough for second place, however, the bronze medal was a big win for the home team and one that should definitely be noted during the Olympic year.
Undeterred, four British women rode to gold. Rosalind Canter and her only eleven-year-old Grafalo could even afford a knockdown and won individual gold in the Harras du Pin. Kitty King won silver at the Vendredy Biats for her first individual championship medal. Yasmin Ingham, last year’s individual world champion, said the team’s rejected result – which showed how strongly Great Britain dominated – was a bye-runner in the Banzai du Loire cross-country.
Both Olympic starting spots went to two countries that already had the best cards in the field: Belgium and the Netherlands. Unfortunately, the possibility of securing a ticket to Paris via the Nations Cup is highly unlikely for Austria. The red-white-red team currently has 175 points, while the Italians already have 400 points. There are only two stations in Belgium and the Netherlands, each worth 100 points to the winner.
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