Langley, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada – May 29, 2022 – In a jump-off of 10 of North America’s finest riders, at first glance, it appeared as though the $218,000 Major League Show Jumping Grand Prix of Vancouver CSI 5* at Thunderbird Show Park would be decided only after the lead had changed hands several times.
No one told Jordan Coyle (IRL).
Returning second over Peter Grant‘s (CAN) shortened course, with the likes of Nayel Nassar (EGY), Beezie Madden (USA), Kent Farrington (USA) and brother Daniel Coyle (IRL) behind him in the lineup, Coyle and Elan Farm’s Ariso laid down a performance that simply could not be caught. In fact, even as riders took greater and greater risks on course, it wasn’t even all that close.
Coyle ran away with the opening five-star grand prix of the 2022 Major League Show Jumping season, crossing the finish timers in 45.89 seconds, nearly a full second faster than Nayel Nassar (EGY) and his Tokyo Olympic mount, Igor van de Wittemoere (46.56). Daniel Coyle (IRL) and Legacy finished third as the only other double-clear performers (46.81).
“Nayel on that horse is very, very, very fast. We had Kent, one of the best in the world, in my opinion, at everything. Daniel, I suppose you could say is not bad also,” Jordan said, alluding to his sibling rivalry. “I just felt like if if I could go as fast as [Ariso] can go, it would be pretty hard for everyone else to catch me, and lucky enough, it all worked out.”
Coyle has picked up right where he left off when it comes to MLSJ, which launched in 2021 with an innovative team competition and 10 new five-star events in North America. He and Ariso had already won the inaugural series’ finale at the Desert Horse Park in California (USA) in December. That victory marked Coyle’s first CSI5* Grand Prix victory, and it hasn’t taken him long to add another at the highest level of show jumping competition.
“People can say whatever they want about this, but when you’re going that speed, everything kind of has to come up for you. I was very lucky today,” Coyle said. “Everything came up, and in the warm-up today in between the first round and the jump-off, [Ariso] was jumping over the standards. So I was like, ‘Okay. Today’s the day that we go and try and have a win at this.'”
Coyle’s instincts were right, and he relied on them as he tackled the short course. Grant’s track offered a lot of room to gallop between the fences, and while some riders tried to beat Coyle with tight rollbacks and inside turns, he and his mount simply outran them. The technical strategy, stride numbers and all, were put aside.
“When I walk courses, obviously I walk all the strides, but it’s very simple for me, because it’s [either set on a normal stride], or you slow down, or you go faster,” Coyle explained. “I think people get too technical with all the other things that happen in the middle sometimes. I’m sure it wouldn’t work for everyone, but it must work for me.”
Final Results – $218,000 Major League Show Jumping Grand Prix of Vancouver CSI 5*
1) Jordan Coyle (IRL) & Ariso – 0 / 0 – 45.89
2) Nayel Nassar (EGY) & Igor van de Wittemoere – 0 / 0 – 46.56
3) Daniel Coyle (IRL) & Legacy – 0 / 0 – 46.81
Source: Press Release by Catie Staszak / Catie Staszak Media for Thunderbird Show Park
Photos: © Tbird – Thunderbird Show Park / Quinn Saunders