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|Iberic Cup 2002|
20 April 2002
Spain and Portugal have combined to organise the Iberic Cup international driving competition in April 2002. The first leg of this competition, which includes classes for Singles, Pairs and Teams of Horses, took place in Spain at Montenmedio near Cadiz from 4th to 7th April. This impressive venue hosts ?Sunshine Tour? competitions for all disciplines and is likely to be the final training camp later in the year for many of the teams competing in the World Equestrian Games at Jerez in September.
Five British competitors travelled to Spain and Portugal to take part in the two-stage Iberic Cup Competition. Heather Lodgson and John and Cherry Gaynor with single horses and John Attenborough and Paul Mowbray with horse pairs.
At Montenmedio the facilities were excellent, but the weather has been appalling over the last month which affected not only the Driving event, but also the Dressage and Show Jumping that preceded it. Luckily the ground is "gritty" sand which can stand up to a huge amount of rain, so the going was hardly affected.
Heather Logsdon went superbly with her Welsh Cob Trafaes Prince Regent and finished a very impressive second to the experienced Andre Herman from Belgium driving an attractive Lusitano horse. Heather also won the drive-off in the cones with a very confident clear round. Cherry Gaynor finished a very creditable fourth with her inexperienced mare Jasmine, who due to the cancellation of all but one National event in 2001 because of Foot and Mouth, was taking part in her first serious competition. John Gaynor had to give way to his wife in the final phase when he had a cone down and accumulated time faults on the fast tricky course.
The Horse Pairs class was won by Magdalena Abecassis from Portugal, one of the organisers of the Portugese leg of this new competition. Paul Mowbray finished close behind for Great Britain, ahead of the overnight leader Henk Van Der Wiel (Belgium) who had a disappointing cones round.
The second competition was held at Compania das Lezirias in Portugal over the following weekend (11th to 14th April). Andre Herman from Belgium had shown his driving skills once again by winning the singles class, with Heather Lodgson coming 4th, while John Gaynor was placed 7th and Cherry Gaynor 10th.
In the pairs class, Paul Mowbray scored a convincing victory, more than 6 penalties ahead of Henk van der Viel of Belgium, who came second. Unfortunately, John Attenborough finished in 17th place.
The Iberic Cup is awarded on the combined scores from both events. In the single horse, Andre Herman (BEL) was the winner, Heather Lodgson came 3rd, John Gaynor 5th and Cherry Gaynor 7th.
First and second placing in the two events were sufficient to give Britain's Paul Mowbray an overall victory in the pairs class, with Magdalena Abecassis (POR) coming second and Henk van der Viel (BEL) third.
Congratulations to all British drivers who took part.