Hungary celebrated a historic victory at the sixth leg of the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup Jumping 2016 Europe Division 2 League after a nail-biting jump-off against the clock in Budapest.
The host nation secured the win in dramatic fashion after coming out on top of a two-way third-round jump-off against Italy to claim a first success on their hallowed turf in 18 years, reports Eurosport today.
Denmark finished a fairly distant third with a final total of 12 faults while Norway, Austria, Poland, Russia, Switzerland and Luxembourg filled the remaining top-eight places.
With a massive field of 14 countries – 12 of which were chasing points towards the Furusiyya Final which will be held in Barcelona, Spain in September, it was a long and tough competition.
However, the crowds were rewarded with a thrilling finale as Italy’s Luca Marziani left the door open with a fence down in the third-round decider, only for Hungary’s Gábor Szabó to also make a mistake.
German course designer, Werner Deeg, created a track that saw 13 horse-and-rider combinations complete clear rounds first time out. Three of those came from the host nation as the Hungarians led the way at the halfway stage on a zero scoreline.
Italy and Denmark were not far behind them with just four faults apiece, and with only the top eight nations making the cut, they were joined by Norway with eight, Poland and Russia with nine and Austria and Switzerland who had already racked up 12 faults each.
Luxembourg missed out by the narrowest of margins when posting 13 first-round faults and had to watch the remainder of the competition from the sidelines along with the riders from Slovakia, Finland, Slovenia and Bulgaria who finished the day in that order.
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