The $40,000 ATCO Structures & Logistics Cup 1.50m featured 21 entries going for speed over a faults converted format course. Going second to last, it was Eric Lamaze and Wang Chung M2S who would be able to take the lead with a time of 84.74 seconds. Three horses earlier, it was Reed Kessler (USA) and Ligist who set a time of 85.33 seconds, which would eventually finish second. Cameron Hanley (IRL) and Newton du Haut Bois were third with a time of 85.58 seconds.
Lamaze made the decision to watch most of the competition to see how he could be faster. Lamaze explained, "In these classes, it's so important to watch more than warm-up. In the class there are so many fences to jump, so I only jump six fences (in the warm-up). The best are at the end, so I glued myself to the TV for as long as I could to watch, watch, watch. I had my strategy. I knew I could do nine (strides) to the double vertical with him. He's very clever with that stuff."
Wang Chung, a 10-year-old KWPN stallion by Royal Bravour x Ahorn owned by Morningside Stud & Torrey Pines Stable, is now Lamaze's most experienced horse. As "a great 1.45m, 1.50m horse," Lamaze noted that competitions of this type are exactly in his comfort zone.
"He's really a competitive horse," he noted. "When I had the other horses, that's what he did for me, that I used in all those (speed) classes. It's great to go in a competition like that, feeling maybe not that you're the favorite, but I feel like I can play to win. It's nice to have one during the week that you can really go on."
While Wang Chung is a "very little horse," Lamaze said his big stride is what helps him, along with the fact that "you can run him and he never gets flat or strong." Lamaze added, "What makes him a great speed horse is that he's very cold. He never gets hot, he never gets quick. You can always push him. He doesn't go by himself, that's why he's able to do so many speed classes."
Since revamping his string of horses, Wang Chung has had to step up in certain events, like Florida's Nations Cup event. But Lamaze is excited to have two new nine-year-old horses that will move up to the big grand prix events in the coming weeks at Spruce Meadows.
Since stepping off the plane last week from Belgium, both Powerplay and Quelmec du Gery had a trial by fire in the International Ring. "If you've never competed on a horse here, even if you know it well, it's always difficult," Lamaze conceded. "So on horses that have never been here and you don't know, it's a difficult task, but they went extremely well. The most logical thing was to do 1.30m or 1.35m with them, but I was so excited to be in this ring that I was like, 'Eh, I'll try it!' It's really exciting for me. This season is going to be about learning everything about them and them learning about me."
Final Results: $40,000 ATCO Structures & Logistics Cup 1.50m
1. WANG CHUNG M2S: 2003 KWPN stallion by Royal Bravour x Ahorn
ERIC LAMAZE (CAN), Morningside Stud & Torrey Pines Stable: 84.74
2. LIGIST: 2000 Swedish Warmblood gelding by Levantos II x Robin Z
REED KESSLER (USA), Reed Kessler: 85.33
3. NEWTON DU HAUT BOIS: 2001 French Trotter gelding by Cumano x Quat Sous
CAMERON HANLEY (IRL), Eleonore Paschoude & Yves Bouvier: 85.58
4. CANTANDO LYNGRIIS: 2001 Holsteiner stallion by Cassini I x Zarewitsch XX
DANIEL BLUMAN (COL), Daniel Bluman: 86.65
5. GLORY DAYS: 2001 Swedish Warmblood gelding by Cardento 933 x Diamond Serpent
KATIE DINAN (USA), Grant Road Partners, LLC: 87.74
6. LERCHE 37: 2002 Holsteiner mare by Quantum x Linaro
TAMIE PHILLIPS (CAN), Tamie Phillips: 90.67
7. FALCO VAN DE CLEHOEVE: 2005 Belgian Warmblood gelding by Quickfeuer van Koekshof x Fellini
FRANCOIS MATHY (BEL), Francois Mathy: 91.66
8. POLASKO: 2003 Oldenburg gelding by Polytraum x Grannus
NICOLAS PIZARRO (MEX), Nicolas Pizarro: 93.29
9. CAMPBELL VDL: 2004 Holsteiner stallion by Cassini I x Carpaccio
CANDICE KING (USA), Stateside Farm LLC: 93.39
10. VALENTINA: 2001 Holsteiner mare by Carthago x Lacapo
CLAUDIA LORENZA O FARRILL (MEX), Claudia Lorenza O Farrill: 94.08
10. AMBOSELLI: 2005 Dutch Warmblood gelding by Silverstone x Lancelot
PABLO BARRIOS (VEN), Pablo Barrios: 94.08
Source: Jennifer Wood Media Inc.
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