Ireland’s Cian O’Connor claimed fifth place in the big Longines Masters Grand Prix in Los Angeles tonight, riding his top horse, the ten year-old stallion Good Luck.
One of just ten to make it through to the jump-off from a startlist of 31 that included some of the world’s most talented riders, O’Connor was drawn to fill the last slot in the final round.
A scorching jump-off opener of 38.55 seconds set by Egypt’s Nayel Nassar and his speed horse Lordan seemed impossible to beat until Germany’s Daniel Deusser shaved just under a second off the time to take the pole position with Equita van’t Zorgvliet.
Good Luck, jumping in his first big indoor Grand Prix, gave O’Connor another foot-perfect round, but was not fast enough to catch the leaders, and settled for fifth overall. Their double clear round was, however, one of only five recorded in the whole competition.
Afterwards, O’Connor said: “I’m thrilled with Good Luck. It was our first show ever indoors, and his first 5-star Grand Prix.”
Deusser took home 110,000 euro for his first place in the five-star competition, while the Irish rider collected 20,000 euro.
Ireland’s other contenders for the trophy didn’t make it to the second round, with Denis Lynch and Campino putting eight faults on their card, while Conor Swail and the nine year-old Hetman Of Colors had 13 penalties.