Ben Maher takes us behind the scenes to visit his top horses, Cella and Urico, at the Spruce Meadows Masters in Calgary, Alberta.
Maher, 30, recently earned the top spot in the Longines World Rankings list, having just been a member of Great Britain's PSI European Championship (Denmark) gold-medal team, and earning individual silver there as well.
Pieter Devos’ first trip to the Spruce Meadows Masters didn’t start out terribly well.
On the first day of competition, he and his mare Candy took a bad fall, with Devos’ leg between the horse and a pole. While Candy was unhurt, Devos was concerned he’d broken his leg—it was so swollen he couldn’t even get his boot on for a few days.
But he’s not leaving Calgary, Alberta, with anything but great memories. He and Candy topped the $1 Million CN Grand Prix today, Sept. 8, scoring a second consecutive victory for his home country of Belgium.
When Hans-Dieter Dreher trotted into the International Ring at Spruce Meadows today, Sept. 7., he had plenty of pressure on his shoulders. After two rounds of jumping, his team lay in a three-way tie for the win in the BMO Nations Cup, and he was the German representative to a jump-off to determine his country’s medal. Belgium’s François Mathy had gone for broke and ticked a single rail, but Dreher had France’s Penelope Leprevost at his heels.
When the start list for a grand prix includes the reigning individual Olympic gold medalist, a former European Champion and two World Cup champion combinations, you’re probably not betting on a 19-year-old local rider.
But Ben Asselin proved himself during this year’s Spruce Meadows Masters, scoring his first International Ring win aboard Makavoy in the $205,000 Encana Cup, held today, Sept. 6., in Calgary, Alberta
Emily Post may have hit the ground today, Sept. 6, in the All Canada Ring, during the Spruce Meadows Masters, but that didn’t stop her from smiling. She and her mount, Mackintosh, led the victory gallop for the $25,000 AON Cup in Calgary, Alberta, but he spooked partway around to unseat her. Irishman Connor Swail demonstrated his chivalry, hopping off fifth-placed Game Ready to give her a leg up so she could take one last loop around the ring solo. Check out a photo gallery here.
This year marks the fifth incarnation of the UHSJA International Derby Finals, and by now we’re establishing a routine on Classic Day. Three of the last five years, Scott Stewart, Liza Boyd and Jen Alfano have jostled around in the top three spots.