Canadian Ian Miller, on Year of the Cat, posted a time of 59.87 seconds with no faults over 12 jumps to win the Wurzburger Speed Stakes of the World Cup as 18 other riders from 10 countries fell by the wayside.
"I watched the first two horses go so I could make a plan," said Miller, 33. "Then after I went, I watched the others try to catch me. Some I watched with great interest, like Nelson Pessoa, Rodney Jenkins and David Broome."
The 7-year-old gray gelding, one-half quarter horse and one-half thoroughbred and affectionately known as "Felix" because he jumps like a cat, is not eligible for the major competition this week at the World Cup. Tonight's was his first major victory.
"He was just a little bit of a thing when we bought him at age 2," said Millar. "I figured he would be a junior hunter. Then he grew up and now stands 17 hands."
Piet Raymakers of the Netherlands was second on Ducal, an 11-year-old bay gelding, with a time almost one second slower than Millar's 60.82, also with no faults.
Defending champion Hugo Simon of Austria was the only other rider to go clean, finishing third in 65.03 on Answer. West Germany's Paul Schockemohle finished fourth with one-half fault in 77.40 on El Paso, a 12-year-old chestnut gelding.
Veteran Rodney Jenkins, 35, of Orange, Va., posted the fastest time of the evening on Second Balcony, 55.39, but had eight jumping faults after knocking down two jumps, and placed out of the money. However, earlier in the afternoon Jenkins captured the Welcome Stakes on Emeralda Farm's Third Man following a four-horse jump-off against the clock.