All photos: Rosita Dahlberg
Patrik Kittel contacted me a few months ago, to ask if I would like to join the big CDI5* show in Stockholm. My first thought was: “Oh wow, how cool that Patrik even had me and Cassidy in mind” - totally star strucked! But after that I actually felt that I should say no thanks to his offer, because I saw how the arena looked like at last years competition, and it was crazy wild! Enormous big screens with live streaming on, huge crowd and just everything that Cassidy is afraid of.
I talked to Rune and also to Patrik about the possibility to make the live streaming on the big screens to just live scoring. And when Patrik told me that if any horse reacted on the live streaming, he’s just turn it off, then I could resist joining this amazing show. We arrived with Cassidy on Wednesday and he actually felt super happy in the arena. It is for sure the largest, most impressive and breathtaking arena Iv’e ever been in. This huge setting on the longside looking like the Spanish riding school Vienna was simply amazing. Cassidy dealt so great with the surroundings and I don’t think I’ve ever felt him this relaxed at an indoor show before. First day of competition was Saturday. It’s our first show since the Olympic Games in Rio, so I was rather excited to see how we would react when entering the arena filled with a happy and cheering crowd. He did sooooo good. Even though he reacted when we rode around the arena because of the audience applauding us several times, he stayed with me.
The Grand Prix test was for sure one of our best ever - and for sure the very best at an indoor show! Great trot test and a super walk. In canter we got a few tensions in the zig-zag but no big mistakes. I was more than happy when we went up the last centerline! 75.6% and placed just 0.1% after Patrik Kittel and 2.5% after Isabell Werth. I wouldn't have dreamt of a result like this before leaving our little yard in Roskilde. It was truly amazing to join the price ceremony standing just next to Werth and Kittel.
Sunday it was time to perform our freestyle. We’ve only performed it once, and it was at the Olympics. Once again we entered an arena full of a happy crowd just ready to cheer for us. It was truly an amazing feeling! The freestyle started out with just a little tensions, but no mistakes in our super difficult start-out; 1.5 pio-2 tempies-1.5 pio-1 tempies-1.5 pio and 2 tempies! The trot test felt outstanding and I was once again more than happy when Cassidy and I could walk out of the arena carried by a happy crowd. New international record: 79.1% which was enough for a 4th place in the finals.
What a competition! Rio was huge, but this experience was really something special, and for sure the best organized competition I've ever been at. A huge thanks to Patrik Kittel for the invitation, it’s been a pleasure! Thanks to my team: Mom, dad and of course super trainer Rune who supported us once again.