AN outstanding performance from Tipperary’s Denis Lynch saw him take victory in Sunday's five-star Longines FEI World Cup Grand Prix at Leipzig in Germany, coming out on top after a 16-horse jump-off which featured many of the world’s top horses and riders.
Riding the 14-year-old gelding GC Chopin’s Bushi, who is owned by Onyx Consulting, Lynch took the lead when ninth to go in the jump-off with a stunning clear round which saw him cross the line in 33.16 seconds.
Only one rider managed to finish within a second of the Irish winner while keeping the fences standing, with Germany’s Christian Ahlmann and Dominator 2000 Z taking runner-up spot in 33.37.
Third place also went to a German rider after Marcus Ehning crossed the line clear in 34.25 with Comme il Faut.
Britain’s Robert Whitaker did manage to beat Lynch’s time when second last to go, but one fence on the floor saw his chances of victory end with Catwalk IV.
Denis Lynch first began riding GC Chopin’s Bushi midway through last season and today’s win comes just a week after the pair finished as runners-up in the Longines Grand Prix at Basel in Switzerland.
“I’m delighted with my horse,” commented Lynch “He has been great the last weeks and our relationship – we are slowly getting to know each other and today I asked him twice really – on the turn back to the double and to the second last and he really tried for me.
"We have had our ups and downs. In Helsinki we were clear and then he stopped in the jump-off. Then I took him to Paris and he did the same, so it’s been up and down for us, so to win today, I am really delighted with my horse.”
Along with a winners prize of €40,000, the points gained today have moved Denis Lynch up to fourth place on the World Cup league table and is almost certainly now qualified for April’s World Cup Final in Las Vegas.
Speaking after the result, Horse Sport Ireland CEO Ronan Murphy said: “On behalf of everyone at Horse Sport Ireland, I want to pass on our congratulations to Denis Lynch on his fantastic win in Leipzig.
"A win in the Longines FEI World Cup is always extremely difficult to achieve and this performance was exceptional against a world class field.”
Source: Horse Sport Ireland press release