The second week of the show jumping competition wrapped up Saturday night at Spruce Meadows in Calgary with the $200,000 CN Performance Grand Prix and World Cup. At stake? Big money, big World Cup points and the last chance for selection committees to watch horses and riders compete head to head. I am predicting the pounding of the second spike into the CN Precision Series for Rich Fellers and Flexible should seal the deal for the pair heading to the London Olympics for Team USA. Fellers, who completed the selection trials in March in seventh place overall, won an observation class in Del Mar, Calif., and now at Spruce.
And let's not forget that he was crowned FEI World Cup champion aboard Flexible in Den Bosch, Netherlands, on April 22.
The Spruce course set by Great Britain's Bob Ellis, who is designing for the Olympics, proved to be very difficult with a tight time allowed. For the United States, it was the fourth and final observation class at Spruce. Here is who would make the U.S. Olympic team were it based solely on results from Saturday:
Missing at Spruce Meadows were two riders high on the selection trial placing, Margie Engle and Laura Kraut. Both riders chose to compete in selection trials in Kentucky and Pennsylvania. I'm wagering that Fellers and Kessler will be named to Team USA. Both posted impressive and consistent results. The rest of the spots are really up for grabs.
Following the final observation class at Spruce Meadows, the United States Equestrian Federation submitted its list of prospective rider/horse combos for the London Games to the FEI for confirmation of certificate of capability:
The USEF expects to announce its Olympic team of four riders and one alternate on July 6. Canada's Olympic show jumping team will likely be revealed June 28.
If Canada was to choose its team based on the same class, in which all the hopefuls were competing, here is who would comprise the Canadian Olympic team that would accompany Eric Lamaze and Ian Millar:
Lamaze rode both of his new horses in the Grand Prix on Saturday night. He had mentioned on his arrival at Spruce that the results would speak as to which he would take to London. So again, if we go by the results, Derly Chin De Muze had one time fault, while Verdi had 10 faults. Let's see if Derly gets the nod to pack her tack truck for England.