Ottawa, ONâ€”Selena Oâ€™Hanlon of Elgin, ON, and Samantha Taylor of Richmond BC finished in the top ten at the Fair Hill International CCI*** Eventing Championship, held October 18â€“21, 2007, at the 19th annual Dansko Fair Hill International Festival in the Country in Fair Hill, MD. The Fair Hill International is a qualification trial for the Olympic Games Eventing competition, which will take place in Hong Kong, China, August 9â€“12, 2008.
Oâ€™Hanlon was the top Canadian rider with Colombo, the 13-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding, owned by Elaine and Michael Davies. After dressage, Oâ€™Hanlon was standing tied for 31st place in the field of 67 starters, on a score of 59.8. The pair recorded one of the six double clear cross-country performances with one of the fastest times of the day and added just three show jumping time penalties to finish with 62.8, which was good for sixth place overall at the prestigious event. On top of her great finish, Oâ€™Hanlon also won the Best Conditioned Horse Award presented by the veterinary Committee of the competition
â€œFair Hill was incredible and the new track ran great. I paid close attention to the lines between the fences, so I would not waste Colomboâ€™s energy,â€ noted Oâ€™Hanlon. â€œReceiving the Best Conditioned Horse Award was a real treat. I could not have done it without the Hawkridge team.â€
Samantha Taylor riding her own nine-year-old Canadian thoroughbred gelding Livewire, finished in 10th place. Taylor jumped a clear cross-country round completing the course just five seconds over the optimum time. Taylor capped off her competition with a clear show jumping round to finish with on a final score of 72.9.
Close behind Taylor was Penny Rowland of Orangeville, ON, and Roundabout, the 14-year-old thoroughbred owned by Don J. Good, who finished in 12th place with a score of 76.8.
Other Canadians competing were Diana Burnett of Blackstock, ON, riding her own and John and Nadia Lennoxâ€™s Manny, a seven-year-old Canadian Thoroughbred gelding, who finished in 23rd place on a score of 97.5. Burnett also campaigned her second horse Sagacious King, the 11-year-old Canadian Thoroughbred gelding owned by the rider and Doris Bannen to a 37th place finish. In 24th place, with a score of 100.4, was Olympian and Pan American Team member Mike Winter aboard Wonderful Will, Sher Schwartzâ€™s 10-year-old thoroughbred. Rounding out the Canadian results was Jessica Hampf, who finished in 36th place with her own horse 11-year-old gelding High Society III.
Phillip Dutton, former dual Olympic gold medalist for Australia now representing the United States, won the event with The Foreman on a score of 46.4.