The International Ring at Spruce Meadows welcomed 100 horse/rider combinations representing 18 countries to the Friends of the Meadows Cup (1.50m) this afternoon. FEI Course Designer Santiago Varela (ESP) built a 535m track with 11 obstacles (13 efforts) to test the horses and riders who stepped through the clock tower.

Mother nature had other plans for the afternoon event as electricity and heavy rain forced a brief pause in the competition. Some rider’s were still eager to go and were chasing the quick clear ride posted by Jordan Coyle (IRL) and Picador earlier in the day, while others saved their horses for another day. Coyle’s clear round time of 62.05s could not be caught and he secured his fifth win of the 2019 Spruce Meadows Summer Series.

“It was a very good course, my horse is quite fast and I just stuck to my plan and it worked out.” – Jordan Coyle (IRL) on his plan going into the Friends of the Meadows Cup (1.50m).

Andrew Kocher (USA) wins by 1/100th of a second

The International Ring was up and running early on day one of the 2019 Spruce Meadows ‘North American’ Tournament, presented by Rolex. With a large number of competitors entering the FEI 1.45m division, two competitions ran today.

The second group of 1.45m horses made their way through the clock tower on the International Ring to challenge FEI Course Designer Santiago Varela’s (ESP) 535m track. Seventy-one horse/rider combinations made an effort to jump a clear round under the time allowed of 81 seconds. The top twenty-five competitors of this competition qualify for a competition later this week.

Young Brain Moggre of the United States has had a successful first trip to Spruce Meadows thus far and laid down a quick clear ride with a time of 59.81s aboard MTM Flutterby that seemed unbeatable. Teammate Andrew Kocher (USA) and the 8 year-old Oldenburg gelding, Squirt Gun, really wanted the win. The pair pushed through the finish line on a clear ride to beat Moggre with a time of 59.80s taking the win by just 1/100th of a second.

“I feel like he’s (Squirt Gun) the best horse I’ve ever had. I was pretty sure he wasn’t going to hit poles, just as long as you can do the right job as the rider.” – Andrew Kocher (USA) on his young horse Squirt Gun.

Kent Farrtington (USA) celebrates his fourth victory

The first of the two FEI 1.45m competitions began at 8:00am on the International Ring with seventy-five horses ready to go. The one round competition had riders and horses covering 485m of track and 11 obstacles in a time of 73 seconds. The riders with a clear round and the fastest time would take a trip to the winner’s circle. The top twenty-five competitors of this competition qualify for a competition later this week.

Number eight ranked rider in world, Kent Farrington (USA) aboard Austria 2 was able to put a fourth win under his belt for the 2019 Spruce Meadows Summer Series, jumping to victory with a clear ride and time of 56.67s. The round was lightning fast, almost two seconds quicker than second place finisher Rodrigo Lambre (BRA) riding Chapilot.

The Irish with another one-two finish

The second and final competition on the North American Ring for the day was a one round competition in the FEI Young Horse Division (8 year-olds). Thirty-four talented horses and riders started the competition looking to make it to the winner’s circle.

The Irish continued a strong summer series performance with James Chawke and Conor Swail taking first and second place respectively. Both riding talented 8 year-olds, Chawke’s time of 63.63s was just hundredths of faster than Swail’s time of 63.69s.

Day one win for Taylor Land (USA)

The 7 year-old horses started things off on the North American Ring this week in the FEI Young Horse Division (7 year-olds) and were keen to get some more valuable Spruce Meadows miles under their belt. Twenty-one horse/rider combinations started the one round competition designed by Anderson Lima (MEX).

Today’s win belonged to Taylor Land (USA) and the 7 year-old Hanoverian gelding, Get Go. The pair delivered a clear round with a quick time of 59.53s to claim their first FEI victory in the 2019 Summer Series.