March 21, 2018
FEI Jumping Nations Cup™
Canadians Claim Victory in Ocala
By Louise Parkes
Team Canada won the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of the United States of America February 18, 2018 with more than a touch of class. The six-nation contest was a roller-coaster ride for most of their opponents, but double-clears from both ten-time Olympian Ian Millar (71) and Rio 2016 Olympic individual bronze medalist Eric Lamaze (49) ensured that all they had to add were single errors from team-mates Francois Lamontagne (34) and Tiffany Foster (33) for the winning total of eight faults. Brazil finished second on 16, while Ireland and USA shared third place with 24 faults in a competition filled with unpredictability.
At the halfway stage Germany and Canada shared the lead with just four faults apiece. But then Christian Heineking (NKH Caruso) was eliminated at the open water, and 12-fault results from Andre Thieme (Conthendrix) and Markus Beerbaum (Cool Hand Luke) had to be added to the four collected by Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum (Daisy), dropping Germany out of contention. Meanwhile a second-round clear from Felipe Amaral (Premiere Carthoes BZ) consolidated Brazil’s eight-fault score line and they posed a real threat in the closing stages.
The Canadians began to look shaky when Lamontagne’s single second-round mistake with Chanel du Calvaire was followed by 16 faults from Foster and Brighton, who had faulted just once first time out. But the amazing Millar, who made his Olympic debut 46 years ago in Munich (GER) in 1972, steadied the decline with another rock-solid run from his 15-year-old gelding Dixson. And when Lamaze kept a super-cool head to back that up with Coco Bongo, then it was a done deal because the Brazilians had added eight more to their tally.
1. Canada – 8 faults
2. Brazil – 16 faults
3. USA & Ireland – 24 faults
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