Spruce Meadows, Calgary, Alberta, Canada – July 7, 2022 – The first day of the Spruce Meadows ‘North American’ CSI 5* / 2* Tournament is underway and the $37,500 Pepsi Challenge CSI 5* was the final competition on the International Ring for the evening. Thirty-four horse/rider combinations took on the 480 metre track designed by FEI Course Designer Peter Holmes (CAN). Riders had to jump a clear first round less than 72 seconds in order to qualify for the jump off.
Ten of athletes representing five countries qualified for the jump off. Veteran rider Nicolas Pizarro (MEX) was the first into the jump off aboard Carquilot and put the pressure on the rest of the riders by laying down a quick clear ride in a time of 42.25 seconds. The ride aboard the 13-year-old grey Oldenburg gelding (Carinue x Quilot) was good enough for first place marking Pizarro’s first win in the International Ring.
Canada claimed the next two spots on the podium as Ali Ramsay (CAN) and Lutz (Lordanos x Pilot) registered a clean jump-off effort in 42.39 seconds for silver honors while Jacqueline Steffens (CAN) and Freaky (Darco x Litho X) completed the top three backed by a penalty-free performance of 42.58 seconds in the tiebreaker.
Winner’s Circle – Nicolas Pizarro (MEX)
“I had a feeling that he (Carquilot) needed to jump here (Spruce Meadows). It’s a place where horses learn, very rarely you see a horse give up, its tough for them it’s tough for us, but it’s very good sport. It puts me in a good place to go and jump anywhere.” Nicolas Pizarro (MEX) on competing at Spruce Meadows.
The top 5 horse/rider combinations from this competition have qualified for the ATCO Queen Elizabeth II Cup Grand Prix on Saturday, July 9, 2022.
Final Results – $37,500 Pepsi Challenge CSI 5*
1) Nicolas Pizarro (MEX) & Carquilot – 0 / 0 – 42.25
2) Ali Ramsay (CAN) & Lutz – 0 / 0 – 42.39
3) Jacqueline Steffens (CAN) & Freaky – 42.58
Source: Press Release (edited) from Spruce Meadows Media
Photos: © Spruce Meadows Media / Mike Sturk