For the very first time, the Grand Palais opened its doors for a late-evening class at 7.30pm: the Prix du 24 Faubourg. This new evening format was a great success, with a large and enthusiastic Parisian crowd coming to watch the closing class on the second day of the Saut Hermès. For the day’s last event, a total of 34 riders from 13 countries took part in this class against the clock with 10 progressively difficult obstacles and a final narrow 1.60m jump worth twenty points, or minus twenty points in the case of a fault! Having won this morning’s Prix GL Events on Cristallo A LM, the French rider Julien Epaillard confirmed his great form this weekend. Riding Quatrin de La Roque LM, he jumped the 10 obstacles with no penalties and earned the maximum 65 points in a time of 42’’82. He finished a few tenths of a second ahead of the Olympic champion Kevin Staut on Elky van het Indihof HDC (43’’28), who took second place. “Quatrin proved he is on form and feeling confident,” said Julien Epaillard. “I managed to do a short turn before the two vertical obstacles and I took the right option for the orange Hermès obstacle. I tried to gain time everywhere on the course, without tiring my horse out too much before the Grand Prix Hermès on Sunday. We managed to find a good balance and it worked out well.” With a time of 43’’96, the Irish rider Bertram Allen prevented the Parisian public from enjoying an all-French podium. He finished third ahead of the Olympic champion Roger-Yves Bost, who was 4th on Pégase du Mûrier in 44’’31.
Photo: Christophe Bricot