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Anky and Salinero Set World Record Dressage Score……..Kenneth Braddick reports from the Netherlands for PhelpsSports.com
Rotterdam, Netherlands – June 22, 2006 – Anky van Grunsven of the Netherlands rode her World Cup champion Keltec Salinero to a world record dressage Grand Prix score of 81.333 percent.
Both she and her 12-year-old bay Hanoverian gelding were "in the zone, in the same place, at the same time," van Grunsven said after the opening event of the Rotterdam CHIO.
Four of the five judges gave van Grunsven and Salinero scores above 80 percent, with only the German jurist awarding her slightly less with 79.375 percent.
The Dutch pair won the World Cup in Amsterdam only two months ago. Thursday's score shattered the previous record of 79.96 percent that was set by Germany's Isabell Werth on Satchmo in Stuttgart, Germany, in October, 2004.
On Thursday, Werth rode her Warum Nicht FRH to second place with 75.958 percent, while Edward Gal and Group 4 Securicor Lingh showed he was fully recovered from an ailment that impaired his World Cup performance by finishing in third place with 73.833 percent.
Catherine Haddad, the only U.S. rider in the Grand Prix, placed ninth aboard her leading mount, Maximus JSS. Haddad, who lives in Vechta, Germany, has been placed on the U.S. short list of six horse and rider combinations from which will be chosen the team for the World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany in August. The other combinations are Steffen Peters of San Diego, Calif. and Floriano, Guenter Seidel of Cardiff, Calif. and Aragon, Leslie Morse of Beverly Hills and Kingston, Arlene Page of Wellington, Fla. and Wild One and Debbie McDonald of Hailey, Idaho and Brentina.
Van Grunsven said that the ride felt so good she actually forgot to count the number of steps in the final piaffe. "It was a really, really good feeling," she said. "When I saw the score go up and it was over 80 percent, I worried for a while that maybe we are too good too soon," referring to the August quadrennial Games. "But it may be even better by August."
Both she and her husband-trainer Sjef Janssen, who is also coach of the Netherlands' team, said they believed that Keltec Salinero was so relaxed, expressive and accurate today that the horse can perform at an even higher level.
For complete results from Rotterdam, please visit: http://www.scg-nl.nl/
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