Strong performance from Lewis Carrier and Diego in U25 Freestyle

Saturday, 11 September 2021

Lewis Carrier and Diego V brought the curtain down on the British performances at Hof Kasselman this morning, with a great showing as our sole representatives in the U25 Grand Prix Freestyle. Riding to self-made floorplan set to music from the Disney hit TRON, the duo scored 70.520%, which left them in 12th place overall.

World Class Podium Potential Pathway rider Lewis Carrier maintained his one hundred per cent strike rate of FEI Championship Freestyle appearances with Diego, after securing qualification for today’s finale thanks to a strong result in Friday’s U25 Grand Prix test. Confident in the results he can achieve with 12-year-old Diego V, he’d been working on a new floorplan at home in preparation – calling on the love of music that was honed during his time as a chorister when he was younger. His chosen music from Disney’s TRON is full of power and emotion, and Lewis had set some challenging lines to match.

The pair entered the sizable main arena and had the customary trot around the arena before, after what felt like an age, the bell was rung and Lewis raised his hand to start the music. It was a brave start with a halt one horse’s length into the arena, salute and straight into canter for a line of one-time changes. The music boomed loudly, which slightly unnerved Diego, and the changes didn’t quite come off, but plenty of other difficult moves did and some of today’s lateral work was really pleasing. The final halt and salute in perfect timing with the music brought the test to an end and the five judges posted the final score of 70.520%.

 “The music caught me and Diego almost a little by surprise in there, so that first centre line of ones felt a little explosive – he felt a little explosive throughout, which was great, but I had a completely different feeling so had to ride it a bit differently,” Lewis explained.

“I’m really pleased with how he went, he was really energetic and he just really loves the music. He really rises to the occasion to the music, but today was about keeping that energy together and not have the mistakes. I think I’ll go back to the drawing board a little bit, make the difficulty a little harder. With the year we’ve had, it’s been difficult to ride music in a test situation, so I can go away and work on it a bit now and crack it.

“I really enjoy making the music, I get to know the test and music really well, so I feel a bit more a passionate about it. I like take things from films – I’d like to go a bit more ‘poppy’ and upbeat – but films have a story and more behind them.”

He summed up his U25 championship experience by saying, “I’ve had a fantastic time in Hagen. Competing at this venue alongside the Seniors has been absolutely amazing. We’ve had a great experience and show, so I’m looking forward to going on from here and for the future.”

Coming up

For information and links to the final results, go to our FEI Dressage European Championship page.

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