Equestrians place second at jumping competition

| 23/08/2017
CNS Local Life

(L-R) Chloe Fowler, coach Jessica Thaxton and Ashley van den Bol

(CNS Local Life): Cayman Islands equestrians Chloe Fowler and Ashley van den Bol just missed the top spot at the recent Caribbean Junior Jumping Competition, coming away as reserve champions after a tiebreaker with the Bermuda team. The Pan American Equestrian Confederation sponsored the competition, which was held last weekend at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in Savannah, Georgia.

The competition, comprising six English-speaking Caribbean nations and the US, took place on horses lent by SCAD’s renowned equestrian programme, stated a Cayman Islands Equestrian Federation press release.

The first day, each participant rode two different horses in a clinic with SCAD head coach, Ashley Henry, who is originally from The Bahamas. The second and third days were devoted to the competition, for which each rider was paired with a new horse for just five minutes of warm-up and four jumping efforts before entering the arena, making it a true test of horsemanship, stated the release.

The competition was designed with an initial round followed by a jump-off for those who garnered no faults. Placings were determined by referencing the time taken to complete the course in the jump-off to the optimal time, defined as four seconds faster than the time allowed, with those closest to the optimal time placing higher. Van den Bol won the competition on the first day riding E.J., clocking less than two-tenths of a second off the optimal time.

It was a tight contest with less than two-tenths of a second separating the first four finishers. Fowler, riding Peia, finished seventh, despite having a double clear and being just two seconds off the optimal time.

On the second day, Fowler finished in fourth place on Sociable. Unfortunately, van den Bol, riding Bentley, knocked a rail midway through the first round, and ended up ninth out of 14 riders.

When the points earned by each country’s two riders for each of their two rounds were added up to determine the country rankings, the Cayman Islands found itself tied for the lead with Bermuda at 40 points each. The total faults earned over the four rounds were used to break the tie, placing Bermuda on top with zero faults to Cayman’s four, leaving the Cayman team with the Reserve Champion trophies.

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Category: Equestrian, Sports

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