It was a day of firsts for Canadian Isabelle Lapierre, as the 38 year old rode her own Cescha M to her first World Cup qualifier victory and her mount’s World Cup qualifier debut at the opening leg of the 2017 /2018 season of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League at Bromont (CAN).
In front of a hometown crowd, the Quebec native vanquished a six horse jump off. Jennifer Serek and Wicked took runner-up honors, and Heather Caristo-Williams and Qui Vive des Songes Z were third.
“She had a very good year, and she’s always trying to win,” Lapierre said. “We built her up, and she’s just improving every year.”
Third to return over the shortened track designed by Belgium’s Luc Musette, Lapierre took over the lead briefly set by Serek, crossing the timers in 43.39 seconds, and held through to the end, as neither Ali Ramsay (CAN) nor Chalie Jacobs (USA), riding his 2017 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final partner Cassinja S, could jump cleanly or catch her time.
“Every time I jump here, I feel the crowd is jumping with me,” she added. “I think that’s why I went faster than Jen. The crowd was pushing me. I had an advantage.”
The first World Cup qualifier of the 2017/2018 season in Bromont (CAN) kicked off the east coast sub league of the North American League. The west coast sub league begins at Langley on Sunday 27 August 2017.
1. Cescha M, Isabelle Lapierre (CAN) 0/0 43.39
2. Wicked, Jenn Serek (CAN) 0/0 43.70
3. Qui Vive des Songes Z, Heather Caristo-Williams (USA) 0/4 45.73
4. Coulash van de Broy Z, Juan Manuel Gallego (COL) 0/7 56.16
5. Hermelien vd Hooghoeve, Ali Ramsay (CAN) 0/8 43.82
6. Cassinja S, Charlie Jacobs (USA) 0/8 45.22
Facts and Figures:
A total of 32 horse and rider combinations competed in the first round of this opening leg of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League.
Isabelle Lapierre received 20 points for her victory.
It was the World Cup aualifier debuts for the mounts of each of the top three finishers.
At 18 years old, Lucy Deslauriers was the youngest competitor. This is her first year of World Cup eligibility.
The League consists of 14 legs, split equally between the two sub leagues, all building up to the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final, which will take place in Paris, France, April 10-15, 2018.
Isabelle Lapierre (CAN) – 1st
“I think this event was very amazing. They gave everything for horse and rider to have perfect conditions. They work hard, and the course designer was fantastic and the crowd amazing.”
“The whole year, we planned the shows where we wanted to be ready for here to see what she would do. Now, we have to think differently, because we know she can do that next step. Now, the plan will be built around doing the next step.”
Jennifer Serek (CAN) — 2nd
“This is the first World Cup Qualifier [Wicked] has ever done. I knew there were fast riders behind me, and I gave it my best shot, but I just missed out a little bit.”
Heather Caristo Williams (USA) — 3rd
“I was really excited to be in the jump-off and with such great competitors. Knowing I don’t have the fastest horse in the world, because he spends so much time in the air, my plan was to have an efficient round and put the pressure on a little bit. We got caught up in our long gallop across the ring. I went too fast and had it down, but I’m thrilled with my horse’s performance.”
Fei press release by Catie Staszak
image: Canadian Isabelle Lapierre rides Cescha M to victory at the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping qualifier in Bromont (CAN), Sunday 6 August 2017. (FEI/ Tom von Kapherr)