On a somber day that marked the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the spirit of resiliency, community, and comradery was celebrated by the four nations who competed together in the historic BMO Nations’ Cup at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’.
Five teams competed today, representing four nations:
1. United States of America: Alex Granato, Natalie Dean, Bliss Heers, McLain Ward, and Chef D’Equipe Robert Ridland
2. Canada 1: Tiffany Foster, Erynn Ballard, Amy Millar, Eric Lamaze, and Chef D’Equipe Mark Laskin
3. Mexico: Paola Amilibia Puig, Calros Hank Guerreiro, Daneil Pedraza Littlewood, Frederico Fernandez, and Eduardo Menezes
4. Canada 2: Mario Deslauriers, Brian Morton, Samantha Buirs-Darvill, Ben Asselin, and Chef D’Equipe Gail Greenough
5. Ireland: Conor Swail, Darragh Kerins, Jordan Coyle, Daniel Coyle, and Chef D’Equipe Michael Blake
Leopoldo Palacios’ (VEN) course featured 12 obstacles (15 jumping efforts), and a time allowed of 82 seconds. This track proved to be very challenging for most of the riders, with two eliminations and many finishing with time faults after just the first round. Out of the field of 20 horse/rider combinations, only 4 went clear: Deslauriers, Ballard, Heers, and Lamaze. Thanks to a great performance by the Canadian riders on both teams, the results after round 1 saw Canada in the top two spots heading into the next round.
The second round rode over the same track, and saw the return of all teams. Typically, only the top six teams would return for the second round, but with there only being five teams competing in this year’s event, all were automatically qualified for round two.
Thanks to a double clear from Ballard for Canada 1, and a great overall performance from the entire team, Lamaze didn’t even need to ride his second trip for them to finish in first place. With his score being dropped from round two, Canada 1 placed first with a total of 8 faults from both rounds.
The final results placed Ireland in fifth with 44 faults, Mexico in fourth with 32 faults, Canada 2 in the bronze with 16 faults, USA in the silver with 15 faults, and Canada 1 in the gold with only 8 faults.
Tiffany Foster (CAN) and Brighton Win the Suncor Winning Round on Day Three of the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’, CSIO 5*
Saturday of the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ brought with it a rainy morning to start off the BMO Nations’ Cup day of the tournament. The day began with the Suncor Winning Round, a competition that features two rounds; an initial first round, and then a second round in which the top 10 placed riders after the first round return to determine the final placings.
The second round of the competition featured the following riders, who returned to the ring in reverse order of qualification (the rider with the lowest score went first):
1. Jordan Coyle (IRL)
2. Matthew Sampson (GBR)
3. Daniel Coyle (IRL)
4. Tiffany Foster (CAN)
5. Connor Swail (IRL)
6. Eric Lamaze (IRL)
7. Jim Ifko (CAN)
8. Amy Millar (CAN)
9. Nayel Nassar (EGY)
10. Zoe Conter (BEL)
In the end, only four of these riders had two clear rounds: Lamaze, Nassar, Swail, and Foster. It was Foster’s time of 51.82 seconds that secured her victory, after she was able to quickly navigate a difficult track designed by FEI Course Designer Leopoldo Palacios (VEN). The winning round was 440m in length, had a time allowed of 66 seconds, and featured 9 obstacles (10 jumping efforts). It was a great win for Foster, and her second win so far of the Spruce Meadows 2021 September Series.