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International Bromont Wrap-Up, July 23-25, 2010

The 35th Edition of the International Bromont ended its first week of competition with the 1.60m World Cup Qualifier, granting a $65,000 prize made possible by the support of Bonjourquébec.com. The World Cup North American League presents six Canadian competitions, two of which taking place in Québec: The first one was held in Blainville, Sunday July 18. Today in Bromont, all was set for a memorable event! Many questions lingered: would Mario Deslauriers raise the crowd and take top honours?

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The 35th Edition of the International Bromont ended its first week of competition with the 1.60m World Cup Qualifier, granting a $65,000 prize made possible by the support of Bonjourquébec.com. The World Cup North American League presents six Canadian competitions, two of which taking place in Québec: The first one was held in Blainville, Sunday July 18. Today in Bromont, all was set for a memorable event! Many questions lingered: would Mario Deslauriers raise the crowd and take top honours? Would François Lamontagne ride to a 2nd victory in life, following last week’s feat in Blainville? The suspense lasted until the French- Russian-Canadian triple-threat jump-off. Yann Candele ultimately clenched victory with a faultless run in 40.53 seconds, with Ljubov Kochetova finishing flawless in a 41.33 seconds time. Native of Mount-Royal, young David Arcand took 4th place!

23 rider-horse teams took to the course, including Olympic equestrians Jay Hayes, Mario Deslauriers and Jill Henselwood, as well as Canadians Yann Candele and Mark Samuel, and also Éric Flameng from Belgium, Irishman Jonathon McCrea and Ljubov Kochetova from Russia. Our up-and-comers also rose to the challenge: David Arcand, François Lamontagne and Vanessa Paschini, along with Angela Covert Lawrence, stepped to the starting line. Mexican course designer Catalina Cruz presented the riders with technical difficulties worthy of their skills: 14 obstacles, no triple combinations but 4 double combinations, broken lines, exacting turns and colours which could prove misleading to the horses. The allowed time was 93 seconds.

First on the course, François Lamontagne suffers a refusal from his horse and lowers two rails. Riding Esther 138, Vanessa Paschini from Boisbriand performs a course that is close to perfect, but her shortly trained young mare garners a jumping fault. Big names such as Jay Hayes, Lisa Deslauriers and Irishman Jonathon McCrea can’t overcome the many technical challenges. We would have to wait until the 10th competitor on the course, Yann Candele, to finally witness a flawless run. Immediately thereafter, David Arcand dashes onto the course to the anticipation of the crowd. All is well until one of the bricks from the wall-like obstacle tumbles to the ground. The Québec native signs off with 4 penalty points, but his time is still excellent with 88.39 seconds, his overall performance offering hopes for a good ranking. With her mount Aslan, Ljubov Kochetova is meanwhile a great contender. Indeed, the Russian-born finished 2nd in Blainville last week. In the current event, her performance ultimately calls for a jump-off. The challenge looks promising, as her first round’s stopwatch is very close to that of Yann Candele, the latter showing 87.67 seconds against Kochetova’s 87.77. Second to last competitor, Mario Deslauriers captivates the crowd’s attention, but signs off with two jumping faults.

The battle looked promising for the second round. With a reputation for speed and outdoing himself, Yann Candele does not disappoint with a fault free run in 40.53 seconds. Ljubov Kochetova determinedly dashes out: she’s faultless, but in 41.33 seconds time, therefore repeating her second place finish from last week. The $65,000 prize made possible through the support of BonjourQuébec.com was shared between the first twelve competitors. With his first place finish, Yann Candele garners a prize of $16,250, to which $2,600 are added thanks to an 8th place finish with his second horse Redefin.

The second week of the International Bromont gets underway July 28, with many national and international competitions. We will also witness the 1.50 m CSI*** on Friday July 30th, followed on July 31 by the Via Rail Double Slalom and the Modified Grand-Prix. The International Bromont will end its 35th Edition in style with the much awaited Grand-Prix, a qualifier for both the 2010 Equestrian World Games and the 2011 European Championship. Jump into the action and witness a page of equestrian history! 35th Edition of the International Bromont, from July 21st to August 1st, 2010. Information: Bromont Olympic Equestrian Park, 450 chemin de Gaspé, Highway 10, Exit 78, 450 534-0787, info@internationalbromont.org, www.internationalbromont.org.

Results:

  1. Yann Candele / Game Ready 0-0, 40’53
  2. Ljubov Kochetova / Aslan 0-0, 41’33
  3. Jenna Thompson / Zeke 4, 87’60
  4. David Arcand / Santos Utopia 4, 88’39
  5. Michelle Spadone / Melisimo 4, 89′
  6. Angela Covert-Lawrence / Unica Van de Roshoeve 4, 89’05
  7. Vanessa Paschini / Esther 138, 4, 89’69
  8. Yann Candele / Redefin 8, 86’50
  9. Mario Deslauriers / Paradigm, 8, 87’20
  10. Mark Samuel / Wembley 234, 8, 89’22

Cheval Blanc Speed Derby: Christine McCrea Shines Once Again at the International Bromont!

The 35th Edition of the International Bromont ended this July 25 full speed ahead! The $15,000 Cheval Blanc Speed Derby created quite a stir among riders and spectators alike. The concept is simple: the first part of the course is executed inside the arena. An obstacle then leads the riders outside, where they go under the bridge, then through an obstacle which leads them inside the second arena, then through a decline back into the International Ring, where they finally complete the course comprising of a total of 21 obstacles! Only the stopwatch determines the winner, and riders beware: a fallen rail will add four seconds to the running time! The Bromont Olympic Equestrian Park makeover added tremendous magnitude to this already spectacular event, presenting many challenges to the riders. It was a close contest, but Christine McCrea took top honours with style.

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14 rider-horse teams rose to the challenge, with many up-and-coming Québec natives to the starting line. David Arcand with two horses, Tarzan and Artan tackled the course, as well as king of speed François Lamontagne with both Arise Z and Unik Circa, first time participant Anne-Sophie Milette, and Nicolas-Xavier Bélanger with Papabili. Among the household names, Yann Candele and Erynn Ballard from Team Canada, as well as Irishman Jonathon McCrea and his American wife Christine, who was yesterday’s winner of the Bobcat CSI**.

First competitor to the course, Mélissandre Lincourt throws it all into the ring, but 20 penalty points are added to her time for a grand total of 146.76 seconds. David Arcand and Tarzan bet all their chips on tight turns, and sign off in 128.38 seconds. Affectionately referred to as the “Flying Frenchman” back in his days of representing his native country, Yann Candele ups the stakes with a 120.68 seconds time to beat, and a single jumping fault at the very last obstacle. François Lamontagne with Unik Circa charge out with full intent on winning! It’s a flawless run up until the last two obstacles, and 8 seconds are added to an exceptional 116.80 seconds time. At this stage of the competition, Lamontagne ranks 2nd. Immediately after, American Christine McCrea raises the bar with a time of 119.32 seconds and a faultless run. Despite an exemplary run, Canadian Erynn Ballard is unable to clench 1st position, signing off with a time of 126.11 seconds. Even with a flawless run, Irishman Jonathan McCrea cannot dislodge his wife from 1st place! Fatigue gets the best of François Lamontagne, yet with a second horse in the running, the Québec native still manages 9th place.

Results:

  1. Christine McCrea / Twister – 119’32
  2. Yann Candele / Carolla Z – 120’68
  3. François Lamontagne / Unik Circa – 124’80
  4. Errynn Ballard / Fun 2 Fly – 126’11
  5. David Arcand / Tarzan – 128’38
  6. Jonathon McCrea / Viktor VDL – 134’03
  7. Kaila Robert / Rojak – 135’15
  8. Mélissandre Lincourt / rainy Day – 136’86
  9. François Lamontagne / Arise Z – 141’42
  10. Mélissandre Lincourt / Wicoca – 146’76

CSI** Bobcat at the International Bromont: American Christine McCrea Takes Top Honours!

The $32,000 Bobcat 1.50 m CSI** test was one of the highlights of the day at the 35th Edition of the International Bromont. 25 rider-horse teams took to the course, including Canadian champion Kean White, Yann Candele, Russian Ljubov Kochetova, Olympic equestrians Jill Henselwood and Jay Hayes, Éric Flameng from Belgium, along with American Lisa Deslauriers. Representing the rising stars, David Arcand, François Lamontagne and Vanessa Paschini were also in the running. Pursuant to a 4-rider jump-off, American Christine McCrea took top honours, with Alberta’s Jenna Thompson and Jennifer Serek hot on her hooves in 2nd and 3rd places. Lisa Deslauriers took 4th position.

Comprising of 12 obstacles and 15 jumping efforts, the course designed by FEI-recognized Catalina Cruz held a few technical difficulties, namely a triple combination, as well as the onset of certain obstacles located on broken lines or exiting turns. The time allowed was 78 seconds. Russian Ljubov Kochetova performed a flawless run, but suffered a two-point penalty for exceeding time.

The 8th competitor, Christine McCrea from Connecticut, would finally grant us a fault free run. Lisa Deslauriers then signed off on a flawless performance, thus declaring a jump-off. Alberta natives Jennifer S. Serek and Jenna Thompson joined in the group of fault free runs. Belgian Éric Flameng might have made it to the second round, if not for an unfortunate fallen rail at the last obstacle! Among the upand-comers, Vanessa Paschini with her new mount Esther 138 compiled 4 penalty points, and François Lamontagne with Tango committed 2 faults for a total of 8 points. David Arcand suffered a 4-point jumping penalty with his horse Santos Utopia. Angela Covert- Lawrence from St-Lazare) could do no better.

With 7 obstacles and 8 jumping efforts, the 2nd round promised to be just as challenging. Highly technical, the course demanded strategic maneuvering from the riders, who had to negotiate the obstacles with the possibility of high canter close to none. Christina McCrea upped the stakes with a 44.19 seconds faultless run. Lisa Deslauriers (wife of Mario Deslauriers) took great risks, and saw herself penalised with 2 jumping faults. The winner of this test in 2008, Jennifer Serek signed off with a 48.01 seconds time. Jenna Thompson would ultimately take second place with a stopwatch at 45.11 seconds.

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Results:

  1. Christine McCrea / Baloubet Junior Z 0-0, 44’19
  2. Jenna Thompson / Zeke 0-0 45’11
  3. Jennifer S.Serek / Éléonora 0-0 48’01
  4. Lisa Deslauriers / Diablo 0-8 48’44
  5. Ljubov Kochetova / Stakkador 2, 82’63
  6. Yann Candele / Game Ready 4, 71’06
  7. Angela Covert Lawrence / Unica Van de Roshoeve 4, 71’72
  8. Jill Henselwood / Bottom Line 4, 72’48
  9. Yann Candele / Redefin 4, 72’80
  10. Vanessa Paschini / Esther 138 4, 73’40

Talent Squad Series at the International Bromont: Ontario’s Sarah Johnstone Takes the Lead

In jumping, 17 rider-horse teams took to the course for the 4th qualifying test of the Talent Squad Series held on Québec territory, a competition which took place today during the International Bromont, at the Bromont Olympic Equestrian Park. This 1.45 m test goes towards the Talent Squad Series overall standings, with the Eastern Final to take place next September in Ontario.

Québec natives Isabelle Lapierre, François Lamontagne, Nicolas-Xavier Bélanger and Vanessa Robert were among the competitors. Victory ultimately befell Sarah Johnstone (who also finished 4th with her other mount Starlet), followed by Irishman Jonathon McCrea in second place, and Alberta’s Kelly Koss in third.

The course designed by Canadian Grant Field was comprised of 11 obstacles, 14 jumping efforts, and 3 double combinations. The allowed time of 76 seconds, as well as many technical difficulties, really put the riders to the test. Following an exemplary performance from the very first competitor on the course, Irishman Jonathon McCrea, we would have to wait for Alberta’s Kelly Koss, 13th rider to the test, to declare a jump-off. Ontario resident Sarah Johnstone then joined the pack. Vanessa Robert and Nicolas-Xavier Bélanger could do no better than 12 penalty points, while François Lamontagne and Isabelle Lapierre suffered a refusal at obstacle number 5, a narrow vertical located immediately following a big oxer. They were both also penalised for exceeding the time limit. But considering the other riders’ performances, all hopes were still alive to finish in the top ten.

Consisting of a 7-obstacle run (including a double combination followed by the infamous oxer preceding the vertical), the jump-off promised to be challenging for all three riders. Jonathon McCrea clocks out with a 39.58 seconds time, but lowers a rail. Kelly Koss performs the best time, yet garners two jumping faults. The road is then clear for Sarah Johnstone and her horse Leonidas. Taking her time, she performs a flawless run in 44.11 seconds.

Currently holding 3rd and 7th place in the Eastern Division’s preliminary standings, the young Sarah Johnstone added precious points in today’s outing. In the Western Division, Kelly Koss is also doing well with her third place ranking. Holding the 7th and 8th spot, Québec natives François Lamontagne and Isabelle Lapierre are still in the Talent Squad Series running. With five qualifying rounds remaining (3 in Ontario, 2 in Québec), all those riders have coveted points still to gather towards the National Championship.

Results:

  1. Sarah Johnstone / Leonidas 0-0, 44’11
  2. Jonathon McCrea / Colorado 0-4, 39’08
  3. Kelly Koss / Carlos Don Benito 0-8, 38’04
  4. Sarah Johnstone / Scarlet 4, 69’80
  5. James Gillam / Channel 5, 78’63
  6. Ljubov Kochetova / Casper 212 6, 80’55
  7. François Lamontagne / Unik Circa 6, 81’22
  8. Isabelle Lapierre / Vicki Vale 7, 87

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