The Canadian Dressage Team is holding down second place after day one of the CDIO 3* Stillpoint Farm Nations’ Cup in Wellington, FL.
Held as part of the 12th and final week of the prestigious Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF), running March 30 to April 2, the Nations’ Cup provides the opportunity for top international riders to compete as a team and represent their country on the world stage. The United States is currently leading, with Spain following Canada in third.
The Canadian team took to the stadium at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center on March 30 for the first leg of the two-part team competition, with all four members finishing in the top 10 on the leaderboard in the CDIO 3* Grand Prix.
Canadian Olympian, Belinda Trussell from Stouffville, ON earned Canada’s highest score of the day, receiving 70.920% for fifth place aboard Anton (Antaeus x Melit), a 16-year-old Sachsen-Anhaltiner gelding owned by her mother, Robyn Eames. Trussell and Anton’s strong performance was no surprise, given the pair’s incredible success throughout the 2016 AGDF series, which included a winning score of 75.529% during week eight that broke the Canadian record for the Grand Prix Special.
Karen Pavicic of Surrey, BC rode Don Daiquiri (Don Cardinale x Rubinstein I), a 14-year-old Oldenburg gelding she co-owns with Jayne Essig to a score of 68.820% for seventh place. Directly behind her in eighth place (68.360%) was Megan Lane of Loretto, ON, and Caravella (Contango x Riverman), a 15-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare she owns with her mother, Cathy Lane, while Jacqueline Brooks and her veteran partner, D Niro (D-Day x Napoleon 625), a 17-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding owned by Mary Brooks and Brookhaven Dressage Inc., scored 67.720% for ninth place.
This year’s Nations’ Cup marks the first time in the event’s history that teams can be comprised of exclusively Big Tour horse/rider combinations. Traditionally, teams have been required to include a mix of Big Tour and Small Tour competitors. With all four Canadians being Big Tour competitors, Canada was able to benefit from the 1.5% bonus mark given to all Grand Prix combinations, bringing the team total to 212.58 points after day one.
The second leg of the Nations’ Cup will take place on March 31 to decide the final team placings. As a Big Tour team, Canada will contest the CDIO 3* Grand Prix Special. Individual medals will be up for grabs on April 1 during the Freestyle competition.
Historically, Canada has excelled in the annual Nations’ Cup, having fielded two teams and earned Team Silver and Team Bronze in 2015, as well as Team Silver in 2014, and Team Bronze in 2013. Canadian athletes have also picked up three individual medals since 2013.
For more information on the CDIO 3* Stillpoint Farm Nations’ Cup, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.