NEWS > Jumping
Posted by Kirsty Pasto on 06/06/2022.
(L to R) Katie Laurie, James Arkins, Todd Hinde, Matt Williams, Rowan Willis
Photo credit: Cara Grimshaw

Bronze for Aussies in CSIO5* Nations Cup Canada

The North and Central America and Caribbean division of the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ concluded Sunday at Thunderbird Show Park in Langley, British Columbia (CAN) with Australia ascending the podium in third place.

The four-person team of Katie Laurie, James Arkins, Matt Williams and Rowan Willis tackled the Peter Holmes (CAN) designed course earlier than originally scheduled due to impending storms, which had plagued the event all week.

The Australian team finished with a final score of 22 faults, earning a podium position, with Mexico finishing second on 13 faults and Ireland prevailing on an impressive 5 faults.

The first round of competition saw Olympian Katie Laurie riding Django II (owned by Katie Laurie and groomed by Brooke Greening) first on course for Australia, starting strong for the team delivering a clear jumping round with only one time fault.

James Arkins riding Eurostar I (owned by Arkins Pastoral Pty Ltd & MT Farming Pty Ltd and groomed by Ali Winton) followed, jumping a superb clear round to ensure Australia remained in contention against the six-strong Nation field. 

Matt Williams and Dandy (owned by Hd Horses Llc and groomed by Lilly Trevorrow) were the Australian drop-score for round one on 12 faults, with Rowan Willis and Billy Guilder (owned by Peter Moore & Rowan Willis and groomed by Kim Porter) completing the first round with two rails down. 

The Aussies kept the pressure on the frontrunners as each combination tackled the tough course for the second time to determine the podium positions in round two.

Katie Laurie and Matt Williams both finished round two with one rail and a handful of time penalties, with Rowan Willis and Billy Guilder the drop-score on three rails and two time penalties. 

The standout performance of the day was James Arkins and his 10-year-old stallion Eurostar I, who delivered another stellar performance achieving a second clear round.  The CSIO5* Nations Cup Canada is only the second Nations Cup start for the talented combination since they departed Australian shores last year.

“I don’t think I’ve really come to terms with the double-clear yet, but it’s a big weight off my shoulders also gaining my qualification for the FEI World Championships,” Arkins said.

“I am extremely happy with Eurostar, since leaving Australia in December he has stepped up to CSI5* level and has been outstanding.”

This week marks Australia's first CSIO5* Nations Cup appearance at Thunderbird Show Park in Canada, however it is the second Nations Cup Team to compete in North America this year, with Australia finishing sixth in Wellington, USA in March.

Equestrian Australia High Performance Jumping Manager, Todd Hinde, said the experience the Nations Cup competition offers Australian riders is invaluable to their FEI World Championships preparations. 

“What a great result from the team. Thanks to Thunderbird for ensuring they did everything possible to make the event the best it could be, especially with the challenging weather conditions. Nations Cup competitions provide our athletes with the chance to compete in a team environment with a championship atmosphere, and today our athletes proved we continue to track positively towards the FEI World Championships later this year.”

 Full results can be found HERE