Eric Lamaze and Rosana du Park. (Photo © Spruce Meadows Media Service).
The next competition of the day was the $34,000 Back On Track 1.50m, which was held in a one round speed format. Thirteen out of 31 entries cleared the course, and Eric Lamaze completed the fastest clear round in 61.06 seconds for the win aboard Artisan Farms LLC and Torrey Pines Stable’s Rosana du Park.
Just fractions of a second separated the top three, with Conor Swail (IRL) and Ariel and Susan Grange’s Grafton stopping the clock in 61.13 seconds to finish in reserve, and McLain Ward (USA) with Double H Farm’s HH Carlos Z finishing third in 61.60 seconds.
Following his win, along with a second place finish in the first competition of the day, Lamaze commented on the great afternoon that kicked off the ‘National’ Tournament.
“The first day is always an important day,” he stated. “I love doing well here. It is fun. It doesn’t matter if the stands are full or empty; it is still a five-star. You get ranking points and you get good prize money, so I love competing.”
Lamaze and Rosana du Park had a fantastic winter jumping at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, with multiple wins. The ten-year-old Selle Francais mare (by Kannan) then placed on the Longines Global Champions Tour in Miami and continued on to good results competing in Antwerp and Rome.
“She is super. She is going to be a great horse,” Lamaze noted. “She can do a grand prix and she can do a speed competition. I love those horses. She can do both.”
Although the mare has been jumping very well, Lamaze was careful to put her in the right level to get things started on the grass field this week.
“She is usually very timid here on the grass, so that is why I chose that competition today,” Lamaze explained. “Last year it was too much for her almost; even the 1.45m and 1.50m felt too much. Carly Anthony rode her for me last year and then I took her over a little bit toward the end, but she felt very timid. She was still a fairly green horse that was very careful then. She was really holding herself up, but this year she feels really different. She really handled it beautifully. It is just a year later, more mileage, more everything, so I am very happy.”
Final Results: $34,000 Back On Track Cup 1.50m
1. $8,500 ROSANA DU PARK Schwaben / M / 10 Kannan x Ukase
ERIC LAMAZE (CAN) SCHOMBERG, ON Artisan Farms, LLC: 0/61.063
2. $6,800 GRAFTON Selle Francais / S / 9 Calvaro x Vondeen
CONOR SWAIL (IRL) DARRAGH CROSS DOWN Susan & Ariel Grange: 0/61.131
3. $5,100 HH CARLOS Z Zangersheide / G / 13 Chellano Z x Voltaire
MCLAIN WARD (USA) BREWSTER, NY Double H Farm: 0/61.604
4. $3,400 DARLON VAN GROENHOEVE Belgian Warmblood / G / 12 Clinton x Heartbreaker ANDRES RODRIGUEZ (VEN) WELLINGTON, FL Arao Enterprises LLC: 0/62.891
5. $2,380 HH DONNATELLA Belgian Warmblood / M / 12 Toulon x Mr. Blue
MAGGIE MCALARY (USA) AMHERST, NH Double H Farm: 0/63.386
6. $1,870 EMILIE DE DIAMANT AS / M / 10 Unknown x Unknown
JACK HARDIN TOWELL JR. (USA) CAMDEN, SC Jennifer Gates: 0/63.647
7. $1,360 STAR LA TUILIERE Selle Francais / M / 9 Dollar de la Pierre x Just a Star
KARA CHAD (CAN) CALGARY, AB Stone Ridge: 0/63.656
8. $1,020 PEPPERPOT Irish Sport Horse / M / 13 Heritage Fortunus x Kilkenny Trup
TIFFANY FOSTER (CAN) SCHOMBERG, ON Artisan Farms, LLC: 0/65.444
9. $1,020 ALBERTO II Holstein / G / 12 Acorado x Cassini I
KARA CHAD (CAN) CALGARY, AB Stone Ridge: 0/65.771
10. $850 CONTIKI Swedish Warmblood / G / 9 Contendro x Calido I
NICK DELLO JOIO (USA) WELLINGTON, FL Coker Farm: 0/65.851
11. $850 ATLANTIS T Dutch Warmblood / G / 10 Padinus x Guidam
BRIAN MORTON (CAN) LANGLEY, BC Grafton Farm: 0/67.321
12. $850 FORTIN Zangersheide / G / 10 Unknown x Unknown
ANTONIO CHEDRAUI (MEX) MEXICO DF Antonio Chedraui: 0/69.296
Source: Spruce Meadows Media Service