The Canadian team of Elizabeth Bates and Heartbeat, Kara Chad and Play It Loud Z, Lea Rucker and Macarena 42 and Kyle Timm and Casino Calvin placed second of 13 teams in the Longines EEF CSIO3* Nations Cup Peelbergen on Friday, May 17 in Kronenberg, NED. With a score of zero after two rounds, the squad advanced to a jump off where Canada finished second, just narrowly behind the home team of The Netherlands, edging Ireland into third spot.

“I’m so very proud of this team!” said chef d’équipe Gail Greenough. “In our team meeting on Wednesday, I said that my expectations were high and they absolutely rose to them beautifully.”

A woman taking a selfie with horses and riders behind.Greenough shared each team member’s performances with pride: “The poise of Lea [Rucker] in her first Nations Cup was outstanding; Liz [Bates] with her double clear was a showcase of great jumping ability; Kara [Chad] with a switch to a nine-year-old horse at the last minute showed spectacular grit and determination and she really added value to the team. In cases like this sometimes life gives you unexpected gifts and this absolutely will launch them into a nice summer series together; and Kyle [Timm] just got a little unlucky in the jump-off.

“It was tough out there today with thirteen teams. Green riders and a green horse – they all rose to the occasion today. It was an outstanding Canadian team atmosphere as many other Canadian riders who are in Europe right now came out to watch and cheer on their teammates.” Alternate team member Rebecca McGoldrick (Fanta M) was also on hand to cheer them on.

“This is an exciting time for Canada’s jumping program,” said Greenough, who also is a member of EC’s High Performance Advisory Group for jumping. “These Nations Cups in Europe are so important for creating depth in our team. The investments we are making in these competitions and horse and rider combinations are working. We are grateful for those that have been supporting us as this shows that it is money well spent for Team Canada.

“I’m a very, very proud chef here tonight.”

Results here.

~ with files from Equestrian Canada