In a great Grand Prix comeback after six weeks recovering from a groin injury, Cian destroyed the opposition at the five-star show in Sopot Poland today.
Having incurred a serious groin strain at a three-star show in Eschweiler in Germany in April, he has been gradually increasing his efforts, with a fourth place in the Wiesbaden Grand Prix under a week ago, and a clear jumping round in the Polish Nations Cup on Friday.
It was today, however, that Cian showed a return to his top form, with two clear rounds from the performance of his top horse Good Luck earning him 50,000 euro for a first place.
The tough Sopot Grand Prix course produced only three first-round clears from a starting field of 50, and it was the 11 year-old Good Luck, jumping 41st in order, who delivered one of them.
Cian said afterwards: “I’m thrilled with today’s Grand Prix win. Good Luck deserves this big day and hopefully we will have many more to come. He’s an extraordinary athlete and every day I ride him I realise how lucky I am.”
A total of 13 riders went through to the second round, including the three zero-scoring riders O’Connor, Portugal’s Luciana Diniz and Marc Houtzager from the Netherlands.
Second last to jump, Diniz with her Olympic horse Fit for Fun laid down a fast speed of 48.77, which she seemed confident would not be challenged. Cian and Good Luck, though, managed to shave 1.18 seconds off that figure and romped home to thunderous applause.