At the end of an almost unbearable suspense, Germany was crowned European champion by team in Children! The Mannschaft dominated this championship from start to finish, concluding with a totally blank score. In the lead before this final and then forced into the jump-off against the Italians after excellent runs and others that could be improved, France finally took the bronze behind Italy, the silver medalist. After the Junior and Young Riders championships concluded in the fifth and eighth ranks, the Rooster will therefore not leave Oliva empty-handed!
You had to have a strong heart to get to the end of this team final of the Continental Children’s Championship.
With a totally blank score, Germany were crowned European champions. Starting as an opener, Lennard Tillmann was the first member of the quartet to sign a perfect course at the reins of Oreal des Etains Z. Later, he was imitated by Ava Ferch, who is participating this year in her very first European event with Quintessa Lox. Meanwhile, their teammate Antonia Häsler couldn’t avoid two bars from her son of Nintendo, Dynamite N. When the last member of the team, Tony Stormanns, penultimate rider of the start list, entered the track with his Dia Nova, the calculation was simple (or almost). If he knocked down a bar, Germany would go to the play-off against Italy and -potentially- France for the gold. If he dislodged two of the cleats, the podium was only possible in the event of failure of the ultimate Habs and, after a barrage against the Netherlands which totaled eight points. But no one needed to think about all these calculations. From number one, everyone knew that the gold would go to the riders from across the Rhine as the pretty gray jumped with ease. Once the number thirteen is crossed, let’s relax.
Germany therefore succeeds Belgium and thus comes to break the supremacy of the Red Devils who are, let us remember, European team champions in Juniors and Young Riders this year, one year after having seized the same two titles in 2021 in addition to that acquired in Children. For the record, the Belgians are also sixth in this championship with nine points.
Once the German coronation is sealed, it’s time for stress for the most chauvinistic. After a course penalized by twelve points for Romane Blanc, who unfortunately paid a bad distance at the entrance of the line of triple number nine before faulting again on the vertical twelve with his Zig Zag Z, his young teammates did not had no choice but to secure the perfect course. This was the case of the young Mélina Bouillot who, let’s be frank, burst the screen. Difficult to say which of her or her Canabis d’Albain is the most extraordinary, as the chestnut has shown exceptional qualities. A couple who, we hope, will go very far. Following this, Timothée Goffinet took to the track with his faithful Volubie du Givre, already present last year at the European round in Vilamoura. Set out to complete a very neat and faultless course, the rider slightly overprotected the number six tackle placed after the spa, leaving his bay no choice but to dislodge it from its cleats. However, the couple ended their journey well thereafter. Last to start, Lucas Delachaussée had to complete a perfect course to ensure a podium and face the Italians in the jump-off. Despite a passage of acrobatic triple, during which his Atcha des Coteaux jumped the three elements with a firm footing, even adding a stride between each obstacle while using all his generosity not to touch the slightest bar, the couple passed the finish line with a zero displayed on the giant screen of the Oliva Nova track!
With a total of four points, the team took the direction of the play-off against Italy for the silver and bronze medals!
For one bar too many, France finishes in bronze
After the initial courses, it is therefore time for the reduced round consisting of six obstacles for seven efforts during which all the riders of each team set off again. Starting first, the Italian Giovanni Vincoli set the bar high with Qitana Vdv, finishing his lap without fail and with an excellent time of 39”. The tone is set! Determined to erase her poor performance from the previous lap, Romane Blanc took care of her surroundings but could not avoid a fault on the final obstacle, just after making a good georgette during which her Zig Zag Z apparently shook her up a little too much! The second Italian rider, Lavinia Lo Bosco, then faulted the number one at the reins of Océan, putting the ball back in the middle. As in the first round, Mélina Baillot and Canabis d’Albain gave a demonstration. Regardless of the place or the turn, nothing seemed to disturb the chestnut who once again overcame all the obstacles with disconcerting ease. But the couple were immediately imitated by the third opposing duo made up of Anna Ruggeri and Dakotah 2. As in the previous round, Timothée Goffinet chose to ensure a faultless course with his Volubie du Givre. Despite a good bend, the couple however failed on the third element of the course, the old spa number five, as well as on the last obstacle. At this stage of the jump-off, if the ultimate representative of La Botte posted a perfect lap, the money was theirs before Lucas Delachaussée even passed! However, to keep the suspense going until the end, Enrico Santoni and Katrin took the doubles entry with them. Everything therefore rested on the last Bleuet who, since the start of the competition, has only signed virgin courses with Atcha des Coteaux. Launched with a very good canter, the couple could not avoid the same error as during the previous course. Returned in the double on one georgette, the lively bay mare was unable to save her rider this time and left the second element of this obstacle on the ground. Despite faster stopwatches, France therefore had to settle for bronze for one bar too many. But no matter, the Children have finally opened the Tricolores medal counter on these European Championships! And what a sport they offered us! Well done Blueberries!
Let’s not forget, by the way, Louise Anquetin who is competing individually but is still on the podium. Today she scored four points with Ucello de Hus.
See you tomorrow afternoon for the individual final. Ten couples are in the lead with zero points after the first three rounds, including two Frenchmen: Mélina Bouillot and Lucas Delachaussée!
Team results here
The provisional individual classification here
All the events of the European Youth Championships are broadcast live on ClipMyHorse.tv