Third victory for Canadian Olympic medalist Eric Lamaze at the Winter Equestrian Festival 2017, followed by Hardin Towell and Margie Engel. Alberto Michán of Mexico stood out in fourth place. (Photo © Sportfot)
Eric Lamaze from Canada again had a leading role in the development of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival, adding his third victory of the year and second in the Welcome class, representing part of Ruby et Violette Series.
Disputing the FEI 5* $ 130,000 WEF Challenge Cup Rnd 5 with a total of 56 pairs, the Olympic medalist led the tiebreaker group by 41.23 seconds with the 14-year-old mare Fine Lady 5 (Forsyth FRH x Drosselklang II) owned by Artisan Farms and Torrey Pines Stable. While there were 14 qualifiers on the jump-off designed by Robert Ellis of Great Britain, half repeated the clear round with Lamaze adding 100 World Ranking points plus $42,900 thanks to his advantage of more than 2 seconds against his closest rival.
The second position was American rider Hardin Towell with 11-year-old gelding Lucifer V (Lord Dezi x Grandeur) registering 43.72 seconds, while the third was for Margie Engle and 13-year-old stallion Royce (Café Au Lait x Grandilot) in 45.27 seconds.
For the Latin Ranking, the Mexican Alberto Michán showed a great demonstration with 11-year-old gelding GC Chopin’s Bushi (Contendro x Nairobi) occupying the fourth place, after stopping the clock in 45.69 seconds. Also managed to add points to the FEI World Ranking Eduardo Menezes in the 12th place and Yuri Mansur in the 15th place. Out of the points, but qualifying for Saturday’s Grand Prix were Samuel Parot of Chile in 20th place, Enrique González of Mexico of 35th, Ramiro Quintana of Argentina in position 39th and Luiz Francisco de Azevedo in place 40th. In doubt the Brazilian Rodrigo Pessoa finishing in the 47th place, while Eugenio Garza of Mexico retired in his regular round.