Articles: Press Release
Richard Spooner Clinches Second Consecutive
Meydan FEI Nations Cup Win for United States
United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
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Web site: www.usef.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 5, 2009
By Joanie Morris
Lexington, KY The US Show Jumpers continued their march across Europe with
another amazing performance in St. Gallen, Switzerland in the third leg of
the Meydan FEI Nations Cup. Christine McCrea, Ashlee Bond, Laura Kraut and
Richard Spooner stayed on the roll that began last week in Rome and
continued with a jump-off for the win in Switzerland.
It doesnt happen often back-to back to win in a top league like this, said
Chef dEquipe George Morris. This is a great group; we have five great riders
and a bunch of wonderful horses.
Morris selected Spooner (Agua Dulce, CA) to jump-off to break the tie. The
seasoned veteran carried the weight of the win back into the ring for the
I could have used any of the three in the jump off, said Morris of Spooner,
Kraut or Bond. Richards horse was very, very fast in Rome, but I didnt want
to get him any more strong, he was very strong today. I thought maybe
Ashlees horse as he was a bit more backed up, Richard helps Ashlee, Ashlee
was leaning to Richard, so I said we can flip a coin. Ashlee would have done
a great job. Richard is a master craftsman, a master jump-off rider.
Spooner, known across the US jumping community for his uncanny ability to
shave seconds off seemingly unbeatable times, put the Europeans on notice
that his accelerator was good on both sides of the Atlantic. Riding
Cristallo, an 11-year-old gelding owned by Half Moon Bay, Inc., Spooner went
head-to-head with German rider Marcus Ehning after the two teams were tied
on four faults after the two Nations Cup rounds.
Spooner had the disadvantage of going first in the jump-off, he put up a
lightning fast time on the headstrong Cristallo but had the fourth fence
down, a tall vertical, meaning that all Ehning had to do was jump
clear. Riding Plot Blue, the German rider hunted around the course in
textbook style, but had the very last fence down with the lightest of
rubs. Spooner was more than 10 seconds faster, so his time prevailed.
Richards strategy was he had to really lay it on him, said Morris. Marcus is
a very fast and smooth rider. If he hadnt, Marcus could have gone very fast,
Richard had a little bad luck at one fence. Marcus played it right and
carefully but just hit the last fence.
Bond (Hidden Hills, CA) continued to defy her age for the US as the
26-year-old rider jumped two clear rounds on Cadett 7 for the third
consecutive Nations Cup an unprecedented achievement.
Olympic veterans, Kraut and Cedric had one rail in the second round after a
first round clear, continuing their consistent roll through Europe. McCrea
and Vegas struggled in the second round and retired but they served as
valuable substitutions for Lauren Hough and Quick Study.
This puts the US team well-clear a top the Meydan FEI Nations Cup standings,
over the nine other best Jumping teams in the world.
Im very pleased, it is very, very important to stay in this league, said
Morris. This league is our preparation for championships. This gives us a
leg up for the summer. Not that we can coast but it will give everyone
Next stop on the Meydan FEI Nations Cup Tour is Rotterdam in Holland on June
Here are the current standings:
1. USA 22.0
2. Switzerland 21.0
3. Germany 16.5
4. The Netherlands 11.5
5. France 11.0
6. Great Britain 9.0
7. Belgium 8.5
8. Sweden 7.0
9. Italy 4.0
10. Ireland 3.5
For more information, please visit:
Watch Rotterdam live on FEI TV! See www.fei.org for more information.
The vision of the United States Equestrian Federation(r) is to provide
for equestrian sport in the United States of America by promoting the
of excellence from the grassroots to the Olympic Games, based on a
foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare
of its human and equine athletes.