In the end, the inaugural Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup Final came down to the smallest of margins: A single time fault separated the winning nation of France from second-placed Brazil today Sept. 29 at the Barcelona CSIO in Barcelona, Spain.
“It was a really big emotion, a really big feeling, just fantastic,” said Simon Delestre, whose 4-fault round today on Qlassic Bois Margot helped France take the title. “We have three incredible horses on our team, and that really akes a difference today with that kind of round, which was really big and hard. You need horses like that.”
The top eight teams will compete today, Sept. 29, in Round 2 of the inaugural Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup Final at the Barcelona CSIO. It’s a clean slate class, but the teams will compete in reverse order of merit from Saturday’s Round 1.
Besides national glory, riders are vying for a share of the €1,500,000 pot. The class kicks off at 3:30 local time.
Swedish Rider Angelica Augustsson endured a scary moment today, Sept. 28, in the Furusiyya Nations Cup Consolation Final. Early in the course, her Mic Mac du Tillard stood up on the way to a vertical and refused to go forward. She kept rearing for a full minute or so, well after the pair was rung out. Augustsson took her time, finessing her through to get her calm.
Katie Dinan has had a busy few months. It's her first year representing the United States in senior competition, and she's not been wasting any time. She’s competed at Nations Cups in Hickstead (Great Britain), Dublin and Spruce Meadows (Alberta), scoring clear rounds at Hickstead and Spruce. Then she had strong finishes at the Zoetis $1 Million Grand Prix (N.Y.) and the American Gold Cup (Ohio). So this fall she’d been planning to settle in and focus on her sophomore year studies at Harvard University (Mass.).
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.