USA 1 Leading Wellington Nations Cup After 1st Day, Spain 2nd, USA 2 3rd
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By KENNETH J. BRADDICK
WELLINGTON, Florida, Feb. 19, 2014-The United States led by the Olympic combination of Adrienne Lyle and Wizard were in the lead midway through the Wellington Nations Cup, but 16-year-old Juan Matute, Jr. on Don Diego Ymas led Spain to second place in the unique mixed-format event.
Riding on her first team as the pair went to the Olympics as an individual, Adrienne of Ketchum, Idaho and Wizard scored 71.600 per cent, the only score above 70 per cent in the Grand Prix division.
Juan Matute and Don Diego rode the Prix St. Georges and scored 71.658 per cent, the highest in that division while his teenage sister, Paula, and Tarpan Ymas also were on the team. Leida Collins Strijk of the Netherlands and West Side the only other combination above 70 per cent with 70.237 per cent.
The Stillpoint CDIO3* Nations Cup is made up of St. Georges and Grand Prix on the first day and Intermediate 1 and Grand Prix Special the second day with the combined scores deciding the medals. Grand Prix combinations get an 1.5 per cent bonus for each of the two rides.
After the first day, the placings were:
1. USA 1 – 212.802
2. Spain – 206.895
3. USA 2 – 205.853
4. Canada 1 – 204.339
5. Canada 2 – 199.606
6. Australia – 199.183
7. Netherlands – 196.395
8. Colombia – 185.971
Germany – 134.289 (2 combinations, 3rd eliminated)
The German team was eliminated when blood was detected in the mouth of Campanero 12 ridden by Maria Kaldewei. The team had only three combinations.
Two teams from a single nation–Canada and the United States each have two teams–can win medals but the results of the team nominated in advance by the national federation will earn points for the global Nations Cup series standings.
The USA 1 team was made up of Adrienne and Wizard, Tina Konyot of Palm City, Florida and Calecto V with 69.860 per cent, Shawna Harding of Aiken, South Carolina and Rigo on 68.342 per cent and and Silva Martin of Cochranville, Pennsylvania and Rosa Cha W on 66.632 per cent. The top three scores count.
Juan and Don Diego scored 71.658 per cent while Carlos Munoz on Klouseau scored 69.026 per cent, Paula Matute and Tarpan Ymas on 66.211 and Marta Renilla and Presumido on 60.920 per cent.
Spain received the most fan support of any of the teams.
“We’re very passionate about our flag and about our team,” he said. “I think it’s great because when you go in the ring and you hear that audience in the back, that team that supports you and that screams your name, it really puts you in the mood and it helps when you’re in the ring. It gives you more confidence,” Matute, Jr. described.
The Wellington Nations Cup kicks off the 2014 global circuit of six events, the other five being in Europe.
Adrienne has been riding Wizard for eight years but the horse was out of commission for most of 2013 afteran injury.
“He feels 110 per cent,” Adrienne said, “a better place than last season, a lot more honest, a lot more rideable. He’s getting more consistent.
“A lot of it with him is just managing him, mentally and physically; giving him days off after the shows and touching briefly in and out with our schooling.”
She acknowledged the is extra pressure associated with competing in a team format and welcomed the challenge and excitement of the Nations Cup.
“It’s different, and it’s really fun I think. The camaraderie [is great]… Just to have everyone there at the ringside for your rides and know that they’re rooting for you. It’s obviously a little bit more pressure, but it’s a fun pressure and I enjoy it,” she said