First victory for France and Mathieu Billot in the CSI 5*

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To open the Longines Athina Onassis Horse Show’s CSI5*, Uliano Vezzani, the Italian course designer, built a course for the fifty-seven combinations competing in two rounds with thirteen fences. Although twenty-one combinations jumped clear, the fastest of them was France’s Mathieu Billot. Finishing his round in a time of 26.53 seconds, the French rider and his young 8-year-old mare won the Mohai class, under the nose of Portugal’s Luis Sabino Gonçalves (26.99 seconds) and Carlos Enrique Lopez Lizarazo (27.40 seconds). "Gatrona is an amazing mare who belongs to Serge Batailler and my parents. She is really exceptional, never wavers, is fearless and we have high hopes for her. Although she is only eight-years-old, I knew that I had a chance of winning the class. I didn’t take the last option due to her young age, but she is so fast on the ground and careful that I knew that as we had jumped clear we would finish in the top 3.”

After the completely feminine podium in the previous class, a totally masculine line-up was cheered on by the public in Ramatuelle during the prize giving ceremony. Now it’s time for the first round of the Global Champions League!