Ben Maher enjoys Longines FEI World Cup Jumping China League success in Beijing
Great Britain’s Ben Maher marked the launch of the sixth season of Longines FEI World Cup Jumping China League by winning claiming victory in the first leg in Beijing, China.
Maher took top spot on the podium ahead of Hong Kong’s Patrick Lam in second and Kenneth Cheng in third place to claim the win, with the winning margin between the winner and Lam being almost two seconds.
Chaoyang Park in the heart of Beijing is the venue for the first two doubleheader stops for the 2016 Longines FEI World Cup Jumping China League which runs until 8 May.
Maher registered the quickest time in the opening round with a time of 76.90 seconds with four faults, as seven riders progressed to the final jump-off round.
And the Great British rider showed no signs of easing off here, completing a clear round in 49.05 seconds. Lam went clear in 50.95 seconds to claim runners-up spot with Cheng completing the trio of clear rounds in the jump-off in a time of 52.03 seconds.
The Longines FEI World Cup Jumping China League is the league for the Chinese riders to qualify for the World Cup final each year. Equestrian in China is still developing and to improve the level of sport foreign riders are invited to compete. In previous years the event has seen several European, Olympic and world champions competing, including Scott Brash, the London Olympic team gold medal-winner, Maher and Maikel van der Vleuten, the London Olympic team silver and World Equestrian Games team silver medal-winner.
Bermudan rider Patrick Nisbett claimed the victory on Chinese Labour Day in the 1.45-1.50 metre class, a warm-up for the World Cup event.
The pair left the fences untouched and speeded through the course in a fine time of 65.77 seconds.
Maher was again amongst the podium finishers in this class claiming second place aboard Ziemer. Their clear round in 65.84 seconds came ahead of China’s Zhao Zhiwen on Fancy Face whose clear round came in 66.68 seconds.
Longines FEI World Cup Jumping 2016 – China League 1st Leg
Result – Beijing, China
1. Wavanta (Ben Maher) Great Britain 0 faults /49.05 seconds
2. Al Capone (Patrick Lam) Hong Kong 0/ 50.95
3. Enjoy (Kenneth Cheng) Hong Kong 0/ 52.03
4. Ku Bu Qi (Tongyan Liu) China 4/ 49.5
5. Exilio (Elad Yaniv) Israel 4/ 50.38
6. Castlefield (Maximus Datie Ha) China 8/ 56.28
7. Alandra (Patrick Lam) Hong Kong 14/ 64.65