“We call ourselves the “Never Give Up Team” because in the middle we had two with 12 faults already but still we were fighting to the last rider, so this victory means a lot to us!” said Belgian Chef d’Equipe Peter Weinberg.
Bruynseels was asked if he had a plan when setting off with Gancia de Muze to produce the first clear round of the competition. Bur apparently he doesn’t really “do” planning with his brilliant but quirky 12-year-old mare. “I have a little bit of a special horse, so she’s not like all the others. She has really a lot of temperament so I have to do my course and my round. So I don’t mind going first, and I don’t have to see the other horses because we always have a different plan!”, he said with a big smile.
Philippaerts said his team-mates told him “everything is still possible” when he was last to go. “I just tried to ride my own class and it worked out well - today it was me that could make the clear round that would make a difference, and another time it will be one of the others” he said. And he had even more reason to be pleased when sharing the €100,000 bonus for double-clear performances with team-mate Bruynseels, Sweden’s Peder Fredricson and Italy’s new star, Riccardo Pisani.
This was Belgium’s second time to claim the Longines FEI Nations Cup™ Jumping title in Barcelona, their last in 2015. As Chef d’Equipe Weinberg said “it was an interesting day, first ups and then in between downs, but in the end we won anyway so it was really great sport!”