Ireland wins CSIO5* Rolex Nations Cup Piazza di Sienna for first time ever!

Ireland wins CSIO5* Rolex Nations Cup Piazza di Sienna for first time ever!

It was an exciting and thrilling Nations Cup event in Rome with in the end a Jump-Off between hosting nation Italy and guest country Ireland. In the end Michael Pender and HHS Calais secured an Irish victory for the first time ever in its history!

After the first round, Sweden was in first place followed by Italy and then France. 

Jur Vrieling and Long John Silver 3 (by Lasino) did not have a too good start in the first round and were charged a lot of penalty points. The duo got to take the lead in the second round and stayed away from all the wood, more than making up for that first round.

Simon Delestre and Cayman Jolly Jumper (by Hickstead) did what they do best - ride fast and stay clear. Jolly Jumper is a true clear round machine for his country and rider. The French combination made up for their jumping error from the first round with this clear second round.

Daniel Deusser and Killer Queen VDM (by Eldorado van de Zeshoek) also started with four penalties from the first round. Burned for a round without faults, the combination went smoothly over the grass arena. Only on the first jump of the triple jump was it close but the beam remained in the bars. 

Nine combinations to go when the experienced John Whitaker entered the arena. The figurehead of British riders sat in the saddle of Equine America Unick du Francport (by Zandor Z) and remained clear for his country, which finished with a total of 16 penalty points and thus shared seventh place with Belgium, which had one more rider at the start.

The very last home combination in the ring was Giampiero Garofalo. The Italian held the reins of the BWP'er Max van Lentz Schrans (by Untouched) but in doing so, also the fate of Italy as the country was provisionally in shared first place with Ireland and Sweden, who also had eight penalty points. The duo did what was expected of them and the crowd was ecstatic! They saw their team back in the jump-off anyway.

Henrik von Eckermann had Sweden's fate in his hands, it depended on him and Iliana (by Cardento 933) whether their country would get a starting place in the bararge. An unfortunate beam out of the scoops caused Sweden to drop from shared first with 12 penalty points to shared third, which included the Netherlands.


Michael Pender came first in the jump-off. In the saddle of HHS Calais (v. Cavalier Royale) he came to defend the Irish honor. The Irishman went through the course in a fast but at the same time calm pace, also taking risks with a short turn to the style jump. The duo was able to do what was expected of them and stayed clear! 

Francesca Ciriesi was allowed to keep up the Italian honor on Cape Coral (v. Comme il Faut) but on the second obstacle it already went wrong. The win was for Ireland! Although Pender's time could certainly be improved, this plank in the grass was all decisive for this Nations Cup.


Foto©: CSIO di Roma / CSIO5* Piezza di Siena