Farrington Back To Brilliant Best In 5* CSI Valence Jump Off

Credit : Scoopdyga

Sunday 26 August - 18h05 | Lulu Kyriacou

Farrington Back To Brilliant Best In 5* CSI Valence Jump Off

Kent Farrington might have jumped the gun ruling himself out of World Championship selection after breaking his leg  because at CSI5* Valence in France, he was clearly back to his briliant best when he won the Grand Prix aboard the ever faithful and ever fast Gazelle.

13 pairs made it through to the jump off including stars such as Eric Lamaze (CAN), Henrik Von Eckermann (SWE), Robert Whitaker (GBR) and Simon Delestre (FR) but the writing was on the wall as soon as Farrington set off for the first fence.

​At that point only one  of the eight previous riders had managed a completely clear round; although Switzerland's Janike Sprunger had left all the fences up, she scored several time penalties doing it.  So best of the rest at that point was Ireland's Shane Breen, who had been faultless on Ipswich van de Wolfsakker but the Irishman had no time to even think how he would spend the prize money if he won, Farrington galloped in and took almost five seconds off his time! Breen had not been particularly slow, the fastest four fault round (by Robert Whitaker and Catwalk)  had almost exactly  the same but all of them look positively pedestrian as Farrington and his mare literally flew.  It did not seem to matter where  she arrived at a fence, she picked up without breaking stride and  her rider never took a pull.  It was a performance worth of the pre-accident Farrington who had reigned for some time as world number one when he had his accident at the tail end of 2017.

​If anyone was in any doubt how good the round was, next in was Sweden's Henrik Von Eckermann, whose Tovek's Mary Lou is no slouch herself and has narrowly failed to win two World Cup finals. But despite some risks and ther best efforts, the clock stopped a second down. Next in was Canada's Eric Lamaze riding Fine Lady  but he hit the first part of the double in his effort to catch the American  as did French star Simon Delestre  who was riding Chesall Zimequest. Another Swiss star, Martin Fuchs  slotted into third spot with a clear on Clooney but never looked as if they would catch the leader. 

​It was an altogether scintillating performance from Farrington, who said afterwards, "I have had a great day, the  crowd really  supporting me andI love this show, the organisers give so much back to the sport. I also have an amazing horse, I have won here before so i will come back next year for a third try  but i might not be so lucky then!".

​Full result is here

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