Maher and Brash claim European Championship medals
August 24, 2013 17:08 pm
London Olympic showjumping champions Ben Maher and Scott Brash were climbing the podium once again as they claimed medals at the European Championships at Herning's MCH Arena.
Just 48 hours after the duo helped the Great Britain team build on their London 2012 gold by adding the European title to their collection, Maher and Brash were back in action as they went it alone in the individual competition.
And Maher, aboard 11-year-old mare Cella, finished with silver – knocking one fence down in the penultimate round to allow Frenchman Roger Yves Bost to take gold.
Meanwhile Scotsman Brash and Hello Sanctos were the only combination among the initial 25-strong field to jump double clear, seeing him climb from tenth to take bronze.
It is the first time since John and Michael Whitaker won gold and silver in Rotterdam 24 years ago that Britain had two European Championship individual medallists at the same event.
And while 30-year-old Maher was left rueing one mistake, he admits he couldn’t have asked anything more from Cella.
"She was quite hot to ride - she was quite sharp and excited - and she just jumped way too high at the oxer (fence 10),” he said.
“I think I could jump it ten times and not knock the back rail down. But that is sport.
“She jumped everything else fantastically. I was concerned of her maybe hitting that fence so hard and then having to jump another round under pressure that she wouldn't quite be ready, but she obviously was.
"It is hard to get through the whole week in a championship without having a rail down, and Cella has been phenomenal.
"It was just one simple silly mistake in five rounds of jumping, and to come away with a team gold as well this week it's not bad at all."
Meanwhile, Brash was left pinching himself after he climbed seven places to earn a spot on the podium.
"When I started in tenth, I thought there were too many top combinations in front of me, so to snatch a medal I am chuffed to bits," said the 27-year-old.
"The horse has been incredible, he really has, and has got better and better through all these big events. Only a top, top horse can do that."
Elsewhere, Great Britain’s third individual finalist Michael Whitaker finished ninth.
© Sportsbeat 2013