Reigning European Champion Peder Fredricson (SWE) was in a league of his own in Saturday evening’s Top Series Grand Prix presented by GHELAMCO – taking home the lion’s share of the prize purse of € 49,500.
Aboard the 12-year-old Catch Me Not S (Cardento x Ramiro’s Son), Fredricson gave the Knokke Hippique-audience a real treat of a jump-off taking advantage of the grey gelding’s huge stride – cruising around the shortened 1.50m course to a time of 41.60 seconds to snatch the lead from home hero Niels Bruynseels (BEL).
“Catch Me Not S has such a huge canter so it was mostly about steering him to the fences today, he covers a lot of ground easily so I tried to just do a good round without going crazy in any way,” Fredricson said.
“Catch Me Not S came to me about two months ago, he has previously been competed up to 1.50m level by a Swedish rider called Ebba Berglöf. This is our second show together, and our second Grand Prix win so we have had a good start,” Fredricson smiled.
Fifteen riders out of the sixty in the class moved on to round two of this Grand Prix, and all of them had a clean sheet on their score. Coming in towards the very end of the jump-off, 2012 Olympic Champion Steve Guerdat really gave it a good shot aboard the 10-year-old mare Ulysse des Forrets (Col Canto x Le Tot de Semilly) but could not better Fredricsson’s time when crossing the finish line in 42.31 seconds which put him in runner-up position. As last to go in the jump-off, Belgium’s own Ann Carton-Grootjans finished third on Irvine Ter Doorn (Toulon x Sir Lui) with a time of 42.89 seconds.
“The show here is fantastic. The quality of everything here is good, and the service is great as well. What is also a plus is that you can compete a lot of horses at different levels, that makes a difference,” Fredricson concluded.