Defending champion Henrik von Eckermann and Swedish compatriot Peder Fredricson held on to the top two places in the standings after finishing first and second, for the second day in a row, at the FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final 2024 last night. (Read the first day coverage here.)

America’s Jill Humphrey and Chromatic BF produced a brilliant performance to finish third, but tragically after returning to his stable the 13-year-old gelding later collapsed and could not be resuscitated. The FEI released the following statement:

A woman in a red jacket patting a horse.

Jill Humphrey (USA) and Chromatic BF finished in third place in Final II, but the horse collapsed and died in the stable afterward. (FEI/Martin Dokoupil)

“It is with great sadness that we announce that the US horse Chromatic BF, ridden by Jill Humphrey, has passed away during the FEI World Cup Final.

Chromatic BF had returned to the stables after competition on the evening of 18 April and unexpectedly collapsed. He was immediately attended to by the US Equestrian veterinary staff and FEI veterinarians but was unable to be resuscitated.

In line with the FEI Veterinary Regulations, samples have already been taken from the horse, and a full postmortem in line with FEI protocols will be conducted.

The FEI, the Organising Committee and the SAEF send their deepest condolences to the rider, owners, groom and connections.”

The horse’s owner, KC Branscomb, posted to Facebook shortly thereafter:

“I am writing this to try to clarify what has already begun to travel as rumors surrounding events that happened here in Riyadh involving Chromatic after tonight’s spectacular performance. After hacking normally after the class, Chromatic returned to the barn happy and calm attended by his life time caretaker Pepe Rodriguez and Jill. After resting and refreshment, he was given a routine recovery shot of electrolytes by the USET Team veterinarian. Upon returning to his stable to be wrapped, blanketed, and put away for the evening, with me present (Kc Branscomb) the horse began seizured and collapsed in the stall. He was immediately treated and examined by both the USET and FEI veterinarians and was pronounced dead shortly after. As owner and breeder, I want it clearly stated that no one was at fault. The horse did not suffer and there is no evidence that his passing was in anyway related to his strenuous and spectacular performance with Jill well over an our earlier or the team veterinarian’s injection. A full autopsy report will be provided to me at some point.

“But what I HOPE people will take away from this freak accident and great tragedy is that it was a night of tears – tears of joy and tears of loss. If I would ask anything of those of you that knew or celebrated him, let’s remember him for how he lived and not for how he died. The sport lost a great one today.”

Belgium’s Pieter Devos and Casual DV Z lined up in fourth ahead of French star Julien Epaillard in fifth with Dubai du Cedre, Belgium’s Gregory Wathelet finished sixth with Ace of Hearts and three-time title-holder Germany’s Marcus Ehning filled seventh place with Coolio in this second of the three deciding competitions. (Canada’s Vanessa Mannix and Lehar had 12 penalties to finish 24th; they sit 28th overall.)

The Final concludes Saturday with two more rounds of jumping. Less than a fence separates Von Eckermann from Fredricson when the action resumes, with Epaillard a single fence behind, closely followed by America’s Kent Farrington.

Results Final ll here.

Standings after Final ll here.

~ with files from FEI Communications