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France won the $350,000 BMO Nations’ Cup Saturday at the Spruce Meadows “Masters” Tournament. In front of a record crowd of 79,489 spectators, France jumped in championship form to win one of the richest Nations’ Cup events in the world. Ten teams battled over a course designed by Olympic course designer Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela, but it was France that ended up on top with only three riders on the team; Jerome Hurel/OHM de Ponthual, Marc Dilasser/Obiwan de Piliore and Rogers-Yves Bost/Ideal de la Loge.
The French team was left with 18 penalties, while second placed Canada had 21 penalties after the two rounds. Both Ian Miller/Star Power and Eric Lamaze/Hickstead produced strong results for their team; Eric was the only rider to produce a double clear in the competition – although it should be mentioned that Simone Wettstein and Clipmyhorse Cash & Go only had one time penalty over the two rounds, contributing big-time to Switzerland’s third place. Peter Charles and Murka’s Nevada had one time penalty in each round for Great Britain, which ended fourth in the competition.
“It was a dream to come to Calgary and to win with three riders is incredible,” said the French Chef d’Equipe, Thierry Pomel. Team Canada’s Silver place finish made for a spectacular day for the home crowd. Ian Millar,team Canada’s captain said; “It’s the only time in the competition where it is a team event, which makes it very exciting for us as riders.There was a lot of drama out there since you never knew till the very end where it would all end up.”
Eric Lamaze took home the other class of the day; the Suncor Energy Winning round. Aboard Coriana van Klapscheut Eric showed no mercy when he attacked the course and ran away with the $24,000 wins.
2011 BMO Nations’ Cup Standings – Top Three teams
Jerome Hurel, OHM de Ponthual (1/5)
Marc Delasser, Obiwan de Piliore (8/0)
Roger-Yves Bost, Ideal de la Loge (0/4)
Ian Millar, Star Power (0/4)
Eric Lamaze, Hickstead (0/0)
Jonathan Asselin, Showgirl (18/8)
Tiffany Foster, Southwind VDL (9/12)
Martin Fuchs, Principal 1 (0/8)
Marc Oertly, Tamira IV (12/8)
Simone Wettstein, Clipmyhorse Cash and Go (1/0)
Christina Liebherr, LB Callas Sitte Z (12/NS)
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