Flying Dutchman Harrie Smolders and his super fast 15-year-old bay mare Regina Z blazed to victory in the Longines Global Champions Tour of Shanghai.
The pace was electric at the climax of the $485,000 Grand Prix as eight riders won through to the jump off in the Chinese leg of the 2015 championship series.
Smolders beat off tough challenges from speed masters Pius Schwizer and Michael Whitaker to emerge victorious scooping $160,000 in prize money and 40 valuable ranking points as winner. It was his first ever Grand Prix win and he said „it’s a very special moment for me. To win at a Global Champions Tour Grand Prix with her is really great.“ Great Britain’s Scott Brash remains on top of the overall season ranking stretching his lead to 10 points ahead of Luciana Diniz.
The jump off also included last year’s Shanghai Grand Prix winner Pieter Devos, Olympic bronze medallist Kamal Bahamdan of Saudi Arabia,Taizo Sugitani of Japan and young Jessica Mendoza of Great Britain.
With Scott Brash still on top of the ranking, the Tour moves to Hamburg, Germany for the 5th leg of the championship race the next weekend.
Photo: Stefano Grasso/LGCT