Nicola Pohl and Arlo de Blondel Dominate Opening Day of Longines Global Champions Tour of Stockholm

Photo: Longines Global Champions Tour

It was an electric start to the Longines Global Champions Tour of Stockholm as Nicola Pohl and Arlo de Blondel took top honors in the 1.45m speed class Presented by Champagne Piaff. Beating one of the fastest riders on the circuit Simon Delestre and Olga van de Kruishoeve by just over half a second it was a flat-out class from start to finish.

Third place was secured by German maestro Daniel Deusser and Bingo Ste Hermelle as the only other combination to finish sub 59 seconds.

In a blazing return to the Longines Global Champions Tour, Nicola Pohl of Germany couldn’t hide her delight while speaking exclusively with Rosie Tapner and GCTV, she said, “I couldn’t be happier to win this class tonight at such a special venue, and despite the weather it such a great atmosphere here. He felt amazing… sometimes when he hasn’t been to a show for a little bit, he gets a little bit too excited because he loves it so much… so if I just stay calm, once he is in the ring if I just stay calm, he just loves it so much.”

Against the stunning backdrop of Stockholm’s Stadion, the opening day of the event featured a seamless mix of elite riders and an enthusiastic audience, setting the stage for the days ahead of top tier competition. Riders demonstrated their skill and precision as they tackled the demanding courses crafted by renowned course designer, Uliano Vezzani.

With plenty of home heroes riding in today’s class, the Swedish female firepower was brought by the likes of Linda Heed and Evelina Toveck. Wilma Hellström, Angelica Augustsson Zanotelli and Emma Emanuelsson.

Eager fans witnessed the best of the best vying for top honours but it wasn’t their day as Christian Kukuk, Jérôme Guery, Philipp Weishaupt, Harry Allen and Sanne Thijssen all knocked a single rail. There were 21 clears in total proving just how competitive the class was.

As the 43-strong startling list drew to it’s closing stages, the last of the riders put it all on the line as they looked to seal the deal and take line honours.

Angelica Augustsson Zanotelli put the pedal to the metal onboard Dyrka du Carry but couldn’t quite match the pace of the Nicola Pohl to eventually finish in 4th place. It was then double trouble as twins Nicola and Olivier Philippaerts battled it out ending up 5th and 6th just fractions of a second apart from each other on board Derby de Riverland and Kwik Tweet.

There was drama when German maestro Marcus Ehning and Flower Girl who had a miscommunication to an oxer alongside VIP had to pull up ultimately collecting 28 faults with time. While Micheal Duffy opted for a steady round saving Dublin for the big prize money the rest of the weekend.

Beyond the thrilling competition, the Longines Global Champions Tour of Stockholm offers a fantastic opportunity for the city to highlight its vibrant equestrian culture. Visitors can delve into Stockholm’s rich history, admire its unique mix of modern and traditional architecture, and fully immerse themselves in the local equestrian scene.

The LGCT of Stockholm continues tomorrow with the thrilling GCL Team competition. Don’t miss your chance to watch the world’s top equestrians in action at the Longines Global Champions Tour of Stockholm. Be part of the excitement as history unfolds at this prestigious event live and on-demand from anywhere with GCTV.