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Michael Whitaker Wins One for the British at Toronto’s Royal Horse Show

Source :  Royal Winter Fair

Four-time Olympian Michael Whitaker scored a win for Great Britain in the $60,000 Big Ben International Challenge on Closing Night at the Royal Horse Show.

In front of a sold-out crowd, Whitaker waited all the way to the end of the nine-horse jump-off to steal the win from Canada’s Eric Lamaze. With a time of 39.75 seconds in the jump-off, Lamaze of Schomberg, ON, was poised for victory with Rosina when Whitaker, the final rider into the ring, beat his time with 39.12 seconds. Whitaker was aboard Landfurst, a nine-year-old Hannoverian gelding.

Despite missing the win, 34-year-old Lamaze, who performed exceptionally well throughout the 10-day Royal Horse Show, was rewarded with the title of Leading Canadian Rider.

Placing third in the $60,000 Big Ben International Challenge, Eric van der Vleuten of the Netherlands also posted a clear round in the jump-off with Audi’s Castana but in a slower time of 40.93 seconds. The Leading International Rider Award was bestowed on van der Vleuten who enjoyed great success during his visit to Toronto.

McLain Ward of Brewster, NY, and Rio, winners of Wednesday’s $60,000 World Cup Grand Prix, Presented by Jaguar, finished fourth this time out. While Ward’s time of 34.74 seconds would have easily claimed the win, a rail down for four faults put him out of the running. Rounding out the top five was his fellow United States Equestrian Team member, Schuyler Riley, who had four faults in a time of 37.15 aboard Ilain, a 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding.

The Royal Horse Show went to the dogs earlier in the afternoon with the $20,000 Canine/Equine Challenge. International show jumping riders were paired with performing dogs, each completing their own obstacle course with the fastest combined time winning. Hot on the heels of her win in Friday night’s $50,000 President’s Cup, Beezie Madden of Cazenovia, NY, topped the field riding Puma, a nine-year-old Westphalian gelding.

Sunday marks the final day of competition in the 2002 Royal Horse Show, highlighted by Phase II of the National Talent Squad Championship. With a win on Saturday in Phase I, 19-year-old Keann White of Cambridge, ON, is poised to repeat his 2001 victory.

$60,000 Big Ben Grand Prix

Rider Country Horse Faults Time

1. Michael Whitaker Great Britain Landfurst 0:0 39.12
2. Eric Lamaze Schomberg, ON Rosina 0:0 39.75
3. Eric van der Vleuten Netherlands Audi’s Castana 0:0 40.93
4. McLain Ward United States Rio 0:4 34.74
5. Schuyler Riley United States Ilian 0:4 37.15
6. Piet Raymakers Netherlands Van Schijndel’s Patrick 0:4 38.74
7. Margie Goldstein-Engle United States Hidden Creek’s Jones 0:8 39.77
8. Jose Rega Uruguay Mill Creek Roseanne 0:8 42.43
9. Sulu Rose Manakin, VA Watch This 0:12 42.26

$20,000 Canine/Equine Challenge

Rider Country Horse Time

1. Beezie Madden United States Puma 49.82
2. Achaz von Buchwaldt Germany Ingmar 50.74
3. Margie Goldstein Engle United States Hidden Creek’s Levity 52.38
4. Michael Whitaker Great Britain Haddon House Carlson 52.44
5. Eric Lamaze Schomberg, ON Gotier Manciais 52.49

$5,000 ‘Alfred Rogers’ Jump Canada National Talent Squad Championships, Phase 1

Rider Country Horse Faults Time

1. Keean White Cambridge, ON Arriscraft Rocca 0:0 30.92
2. Isabelle Lapierre Breakyville, QC Diaka de Semilly 0:0 31.14
3. Vanessa Paschini Boisbrind, QC Safari 0:0 36.13
4. Rebecca Irvine Brockville, ON Quincy 0:2 38.44
5. John Kersley Martintown, ON Moritze 0:6 38.47
6. Myra Simard Ville St-Laurent, QC Dutch Treat 0:13 45.14

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