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Federation Equestre Internationale News

Smith Steals the Show in Oslo

Britain's Robert Smith scored an emphatic victory in the second leg of the FEI World Cup series in Oslo, Norway today but Holland's Eric Van der Vleuten, who finished fourth with Audi's Jikke, further cemented his league-table advantage.

Smith had thrown down the gauntlet when topping Friday's World Cup Preliminary competition and capitalised on his last-to-go starting position today with a superb jump-off round from the stallion Marius Claudius.

With 14 through to the timed round it was always going to be a tough jump-off and the Yorkshireman was chasing the target-time of 34.29 seconds set by Jos Lansink and AK Zandor Z.

"There were so many clears that it was very fast and I knew that I must take a really difficult turn to the penultimate fence which nobody else wanted to try if I was to be in with a chance to win so I did it- and it worked!" Robert said afterwards.

He knew his horse had the speed - his victory in the World Cup class at Olympia in London last December was secured with a blistering performance - "he has plenty of speed and he can take the pressure" Robert said.

Marius Claudius has had an easier season than usual. "He didn't do too much mid-year although I competed with him in the Nations Cup in Aachen where he won the Grand Prix of Europe and in the Nations Cups in Barcelona and Calgary and I'll be campaigning him up to Christmas with the intention of qualifying for Milan" he added.

Jos slotted into second ahead of promising young British contender Richard Davenport riding Luc while Eric Van der Vleuten's fourth placing promotes the Dutchman, winner in the opening round in Helsinki last weekend, to an even stronger position at the head of the league table with 33 points to his credit to date.

Normally a total of between 45 and 48 points is sufficient to secure a place at the final and Eric is hoping to make the cut with a good result at the next round of the series in Verona on November 9.

RESULT: 1, Marius Claudius (Robert Smith) GB 0/0 32.34; 2, AK Caridor Z (Jos Lansink) Bel 0/0 34.29; 3, Luc (Richard Davenport) GB 34.65; 4, Audi's Jikke (Eric Van der Vleuten) Hol 0/0 34.72; 5, Cinderella (Maria Gretzer) Swe 0/0 34.96; 6, Verelst Goliath (Ludo Philippaerts) Bel 0/0 35.12; 7, LB Lacorrado (Beat Mandli) Sui 0/0 35.26; 8, H&M Butterfly Flip (Malin Baryard) Swe 35.40; 9, Controe (Marco Kutscher) Ger 0/0 36.28; 10, Qualite (Robert Whitaker) GB 0/4 35.41; 11, Kilian (Guiseppe Rolli) Ita 0/4 35.41; 12, A La Ballerina (Katarina Offel) Ger 0/4 35.48; 13, Richebourg (Jean Claude Vangeenberghe) Bel 0/6 46.28; 14, Hofgut Liederbachs Ingmar (Pia-Luise Aufrecht) Ger 0/8 34.47; 15, Equeste Carnute (Thomas Velin) Den 0/10 46.28; 16, De Sjiem (Jeroen Dubbeldam) Hol 1/- 78.38.



1. Eric van der Vleuten - 33
2. Robert Smith - 21
3. Malin Baryard - 18
E4. Jos Lansink/Helena Weinberg - 17
E6, Richard Davenport/Bruno Broucqsault - 15
E8, Jeroen Dubbeldam/Michel Hecart - 13
E10, Marco Kutscher/Maria Gretzer - 12.

The website for Oslo is

FEI World Cup jumping has entered its 26th year. The series, created in 1978, today comprises 12 leagues on all continents. The best riders from over 100 World Cup preliminary competitions will qualify for the Final in Milan (ITA) from 21 to 25 April 2004. The title-holder is Markus Ehning (GER). The Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI), founded in 1921, is the international body governing equestrian sport recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and includes 130 National Federations.

Equestrian sport has been on the Olympic programme since 1912 with three disciplines - Jumping, Dressage and Eventing. It is one of the very few sports in which men and women compete on equal terms. It is also the only sport which involves two athletes - horse and rider - and the FEI has relentlessly concerned itself with the welfare of the horse.


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