Nassar Nets First International FEI Win at Spruce

[Calgary, AB] It was anybody’s game in the International Ring at Spruce Meadows today, with a rookie and veteran taking home first place ribbons during day two of the 2012 Spruce Meadows ‘North American’ Tournament in the International Ring.

It was a first for Nayel Nassar (EGY), who beat out veterans like Beezie Madden (USA) and McLain Ward (USA) to take home the 1.50 meter Progress Energy Cup. The course featured 16 jumping efforts over 510 meters of track. After 41 horse/rider combinations completed the tough track, 3 riders advanced to the jump off. In the end, Nassar emerged victorious aboard his 14 year old Belgian Warmblood stallion, Raging Bull Vangelis S.

Nayel Nassar aboard Raging Bull Vangellis S, champions of the Progress Energy Cup. Photo ©Spruce Meadows Media Services

This is the first FEI win for 22 year old Nassar, who is competing at Spruce Meadows for the first time. “This place is amazing. It’s the smoothest run competition I’ve ever been to.” said Nassar, when asked about his experience at Spruce Meadows to date. “I’ve been here for three weeks now, and I couldn’t be happier with a win here.”

Winning at Spruce Meadows isn’t a new feeling for McLain Ward (USA), but the Olympic veteran says it never gets old. Ward posted two clear rounds over the course designed by Michel Villancourt (CAN), with 15 jumping obstacles and 495 meters of track. This win aboard the 11 year old Warmblood gelding, Rothchild, is Ward’s third FEI win at Spruce Meadows this season. “The level at Spruce Meadows is phenomenal,” commented Ward after the victory. “No victory here ever loses meaning for me.”

Cal Jacober, Office Managing Partner, PWC, presenting the winner's trophy to McLain Ward. Photo ©Spruce Meadows Media Services

Spruce Meadows presents family fun night on Friday, featuring hot dogs, Pepsi and International level sport. The FEI action continues tomorrow during the 2012 Spruce Meadows ‘North American’ tournament, with the Pepsi Cup and the Lafarge Cup.

View full results at www.sprucemeadows.com

Top Ten - $35,000 Progess Energy Cup 

Rider | Nation | Horse

  1. Nayel Nassar | EGY | Raging Bull Vangelis S
  2. Beezie Madden | USA | Vanilla
  3. Christine McCrea | USA | Romantovich Take One
  4. Beezie Madden | USA | Coral Reef Via Volo
  5. Reed Kessler | USA | Ligist
  6. Jonathan McCrea | USA | Colorado
  7. Mac Cone | USA | Capone I
  8. Nick Dello Joio | USA | Zorro
  9. Mario Deslauriers | USA | Cella
  10. McLain Ward | USA | Antares F

Top Ten - $35,000 PWC Cup 

Rider | Nation | Horse

  1. McLain Ward | USA | Rothchild
  2. Beezie Madden | USA | Verdi
  3. Tim Gredley | GBR | Unex Chamberlain Z
  4. Eric Lamaze | CAN | Verdi
  5. Sean Crooks | USA | Armegedon
  6. Tiffany Foster | CAN | Southwind VDL
  7. Lauren Tisbo | USA | King Kolibri
  8. Lisa Carlsen | CAN | La Boom
  9. Richard Spooner | USA | Cristallo
  10. Jennifer Crooks | IRL | SF Uryadi