It was the Brazilian's father, the 58-year-old Nelson Pessoa, who had set the pace on Chouman, a horse he had never ridden in a jump-off before. His time looked unbeatable until Rodigo proved otherwise, winning by 0.92sec.
Nelson Pessoa was also beaten - by the narrowest possible margin of 0.01sec - when Switzerland's Thomas Fuchs separated the two Pessoas in second place.
John Whitaker, on Everest Gammon, was the only Briton to jump two clear rounds and reach the 11-horse jump-off. He also took a formidable gallop around the course, but was marginally slower when Gammon took a rail off the last fence to finish sixth.
Michael Whitaker had dropped out when Everest Midnight Madness made his first mistake of the meeting, hitting the middle element of the treble in the first round.Reuse content