Conor Swail (IRL) and Count Me In Claim Another Spruce Meadows Victory

Saturday of the Spruce Meadows ‘North American’ CSI 5*, presented by Rolex, began with the ATB Financial Cup Winning Round. Of the twenty-four horse/rider combinations that initially entered the competition, the top 10 returned for a second round to determine the placings.

The course, designed by FEI course designer Peter Grant (CAN), featured 12 obstacles (15 jumping efforts) and had a time allowed of 81 seconds. Some of the top ten riders who moved on to the winning round included local Jim Ifko (CAN), former World #1 Kent Farrington (USA), and Spruce Meadows resident rider Brian Morton (CAN).

The winning round took place over a 390m track, with 9 obstacles, and had a time allowed of 59 seconds. It was a competitive round, and saw all riders really push themselves to deliver a clean round with a time that would be difficult for those who followed to beat.

Conor Swail (IRL) laid down a good trip that was clean with a time of 52.40 seconds early on in the winning round, and managed to be untouchable as the remaining riders took to the ring to challenge his score.

This was the second win for Swail and Count Me In this season at Spruce Meadows, after having also won the Cardel Homes Jumper Cup on the opening day of the Sprcue Meadows ‘National’ CSI 5*, presented by Rolex, two weeks ago.

Canadian Mario Deslauriers and Bardolina 2 Win the ATCO Queen Elizabeth II Cup

Day 4 of the ‘North American’ tournament closed with the colours of Canada, as the nation’s flag was raised in the International Ring to honour and celebrate the victory of Mario Deslauriers (CAN) in the ATCO Queen Elizabeth II Cup. Posting the only double clear, Deslauriers and his partner, Bardolina 2, rode to a well-deserved first place finish in this Grand Prix.

The grand prix course, designed by Peter Grant (CAN), featured 14 obstacles (18 jumping efforts) and a time allowed of 93 seconds. Grant made use of the open water obstacle, as well as several tricky combinations over the 615m track. It was a tough course that saw only 4 clean rides qualify for the jump-off, from Deslauriers, Carlos Hank Guereirro (MEX), Katie Laurie (AUS), and Frederico Fernandez (MEX).

Fernandez elected not to ride in the jump-off, automatically placing him in the fourth ribbon position. Carlos Hank was first to go for the jump-off, with a rail and a refusal that cost him 4 faults each, plus several time faults to finish with a time of 62.05 seconds and 13 faults. Laurie was next up, and her one-rail round plus a time fault placed her ahead of Carlos Hank with 5 faults and a time of 54.80 seconds. Deslauriers was last to go, and his clean round with a time of 53.05 seconds placing him at the top of the leaderboard.

Deslauriers spoke to reporters following the conclusion of the competition, and expressed how tough the course was. “I thought the course designer was a little severe. A long course, double-liverpool going away from the gate. There was a lot of questions out there… I didn’t think more than 5, for sure,” he said, referring to how many riders he thought would go clear.

While it may have been a tough course, Deslauriers and Bardolina 2 seemed to navigate it with ease. Deslauriers was happy to have such a positive result out of today’s competition.


Results here.