Those of you with an interest in dressage will no doubt be well aware of the FEI Dressage World Cup. This is an event that keen fans eagerly anticipate every single year. The last leg of the FEI Dressage World Cup™ 2018/2019 Western European League at ’s-Hertogenbosch, however, was something very special indeed.
Held in the Netherlands, the 28-year-old Dane, Daniel Bachmann Anderson was on the form of his life and treated spectators to the performance of a lifetime in order to claim the top spot at the tenth and last leg of the event.
Going last, it seemed as if the odds were stacked heavily against him as he had the unenviable task of attempting to top Helen Langehanenberg’s impressive score of 84.875. Helen herself had just forced fellow German Isabell Werth out of the top 3, and she was looking to be on form.
The Dane however, along with his trusty 14-year-old stallion, dug deep and pulled out all the stops in order to perform at his absolute best. Bachmann Anderson recorded a score of 84.890, which propelled him into the first position. The difference in scores may have been tiny, but that winning margin of just 0.015 was enough to launch him to the top spot on the table, and 4th position overall in the Western European League Table.
‘An extra-ordinary beast’
Bachmann Anderson knew that he faced tough competition, but he and his horse relished in this. He wasn’t intimidated by Helen’s score. Instead, he stated that ‘I saw Helen’s score just before I went in and I decided I was just going to go for it – and I did!’. His horse ‘Zach’ did everything that was asked of him, and a whole lot more.
Zach is a truly extraordinary horse as at the age of 6, he lost an eye in an injury. This injury clearly doesn’t hold him back whatsoever. The Danish rider was full of praise for his horse stating, of his horse, that he ‘knows his job and he believes in me – he is truly amazing’.
“Today he just rocked it and it felt so good, he has so much power and now he can really absorb the degree of difficulty in this Freestyle. We finished very close Helen and I, and it’s amazing to ride against these great German and Dutch riders who are bringing out their ‘A’ game. This is another really important moment in my career!”Daniel Bachmann Andersen
Now, all eyes are on the future – specifically on the 3rd of April at the final in Gothenburg, Sweden. Anderson’s strong league finish will surely ensure he lands a good drawn order. Both rider and horse will have a few days to rest and recover, then it’s game-on in Sweden.
Currently, there are just nine spots available to riders in the final, and with current standings, Helen Langehanenberg and Dorothee Schneider, both of Germany, will join defending champion and fellow countrywoman Isabell Werth, on the final.
The FEI Dressage World Cup™ Final in Gothenburg (SWE) kicks off later today.
|1. Blue Hors Zack (Daniel Bachmann Andersen) DEN 84.890 |
2. Damsey FRH (Helen Langehanenberg) GER 84.875
3. Emilio (Isabell Werth) GER 82.930