The Hermès U.S. Show Jumping Team put forth a valiant effort in the $300,000 BMO Nations Cup at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ CSIO5* Tournament. The challenging track designed by Leopoldo Palacios Jugo (VEN) posed many issues for the eight nations competing on Saturday. Only two combinations were double-clear, and the U.S. combinations had particular trouble at the water. Led by Chef d’Equipe Robert Ridland, the team consisting of McLain Ward, Georgina Bloomberg, Todd Minikus, and Beezie Madden fought hard in Spruce Meadows’ electric International Ring, finishing in fourth place.
Ward (Brewster, N.Y.) led off for the U.S. riding HH Carlos Z, Double H Farm’s 2002 Zangerscheide gelding, and had a rough 12-fault round. Bloomberg (New York City, N.Y.) and Lilli, Gotham Enterprizes, LLC’s 2004 Deutsches Sportpfred mare, had a strong performance over the tough track, collecting just four faults at fence seven, the water. Minikus (Loxahatchee, Fla.) and Babalou 41, Two Swans Farm’s 2005 Oldenburg mare, followed suit with a good round, also having a foot in the water for four faults. Madden (Cazenovia, N.Y.) and Simon, Abigail Wexner’s 1999 Dutch Warmblood gelding, also fell victim to the water, as well as at fence 11, the bicycle vertical, for a total of eight faults. The U.S. team moved forward to the second round in a three-way tie for third place with Belgium and France on 16 faults.
In the second round, Ward and HH Carlos Z improved to a four-fault round, with just a foot in the water. Bloomberg and Lilli and Minikus and Babalou 41 both had rails early in the course and faulted at the water, for a total of eight faults each. Madden and Simon laid down a fautless round, allowing the U.S. Team to finish in fourth place on a score of 28 faults. Brazil won Gold with a total of 13 faults, followed by France with 16 and Canada with 24.
On Sunday, combinations will aim for top honors in the $1.5 Million CP International Grand Prix.
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