by Fran Jurga | 5 July 2009 | The Jurga Report
Europe's premier horse competition, Aachen's World Equestrian Festival, is the latest feather in the top hat of US dressage rider Steffen Peters. Riding his 2009 World Cup winner Ravel this weekend, the pair won it all for the USA. The final victory came on Sunday with a slim victory over Holland's Anky van Grunsven and Salinero in the freestyle to music. Van Grunsven had set the score to beat at 84.50 percent with a highly technical choreography. And yet Steffen Peters still managed to go one better, claiming his third victory at the Festival with a score of 85.60 percent.
After winning the Grand Prix, Grand Prix Sp?ciale and the Grand Prix Freestyle, Ravel and Peters also secured the title of Dressage Champions Aachen 2009.
Ravel's freestyle routine was packed with technically difficult exercises: it began with the canter tour with flying-changes on a curved line. Also remarkable were the direct combination of a pirouette, piaffe and the extended walk.
Remember, Steffen is originally from Germany, and he first discovered Ravel at the World Equestrian Festival. Just watch, and listen to the enthusiasm of the announcer:
Thanks to Mary Phelps and Dressage Daily for the heads up on the video posting. Mary was there!
Aachen is a horse-friendly city on Germany's Dutch border and was the site of the 2006 FEI World Equestrian Games. Each year, Aachen hosts the CHIO World Equestrian Festival, and invites teams and individuals to compete in showjumping, dressage, eventing and combined driving.
Here's a little video about the city and their equestrian event facilities. If you have a chance to visit, you won't forget it!