CSI 3*

Katie Kruger Claims the Win in the Tbird Challenge CSI 3*

Langley, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada – August 10, 2023 – The Tbird 1.40m Challenge CSI 3* came down to a match race Thursday afternoon at Thunderbird Show Park.

Having the advantageous position of following her lone opponent in Laura Jane Tidball (CAN), Katie Kruger (CAN) knew exactly what she’d have to do to claim the second international victory of her career.

But her winning strategy was not to try to outdo her competition; it was to simply commit to her own plan.

Katie Kruger (CAN) & Goodwill VB

Kruger and her longtime partner Goodwill VB executed the only double-clear performance of the competition to take the win; the pair crossed the timers of Peter Holmes’ (CAN) short course in 44.94 seconds. Tidball and Jericho finished second with a score of four faults (44.62 seconds). Ashley Papalia (CAN) and Comme tu Veux Z—fresh off a win of their own in Wednesday’s Happy Welcome CSI 3*—finished third after incurring a single time fault in the first round.

I had walked [jumps] one to two in the nine [strides], and we were watching LJ, and she did the 10,” Kruger said. “But my horse has a huge step, so we thought the nine would be easy. We walked a few lines that we wouldn’t normally walk so that I had an idea of what was possible. I rode them exactly how we walked, and it just showed up nicely for me.”

Katie Kruger (CAN) & Goodwill VB

Kruger and now 17-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion have been partnered for nearly seven years, and they have climbed the ranks from the amateur jumper divisions up to the four-star level. At the 1.40m height, this pair jumps clear 62% of the time, according to Jumpr App.

“He has taught me so much…He is like a pure gift,” Kruger gushed. “Every day I get to ride him, I am so grateful. He’s just taught me to enjoy every moment and have a little fun with it, because he’s got a good sense of humor, and he has really helped me have a better sense of humor about it, too.”

Katie Kruger (CAN) & Goodwill VB

It was during tbird’s August series in 2021 that Kruger recorded her first FEI win. Adding a second proved to taste just as sweet.

“I’m pretty darn excited,” she shared. “I did not ride as well as I wanted to yesterday, and so it feels pretty great to have a great round today.

“The [tbird] facility is amazing. The ring is beautiful. It’s beautifully maintained. The jumps are gorgeous,” Kruger added. “My horses love the field. It’s just— it’s our favorite place to be.”

Katie Kruger (CAN) & Goodwill VB during the awards ceremony

Final Results – Tbird Challenge CSI 3* – 1.40m

1) Katie Kruger (CAN) & Goodwill VB – 0 / 0 – 44.94

2) Laura Jane Tidball (CAN) & Jericho – 0 / 4 – 44.62

3) Ashley Papalia (CAN) & Comme Tu Veux Z – 1 – 82.35

Source: Press Release from Thunderbird Show Park

Photos: © Tbird /Kim Gaudry