Rowan Willis competing in $3,000,000 Spruce Meadows Masters CSIO5* this weekend
Source: Spruce Meadows Press Release
From simple beginnings in 1975 the dream was spawned. Now 43 years later Spruce Meadows, the dream, has firmly taken root and has established itself as the leading venue in the world for International Show Jumping. Over the last four decades, riders from over 60 nations have come through the iconic Spruce Meadows clock tower to test their medal.
The Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ builds on the momentum of the successful 2018 Summer Series which featured approximately 1000 horses and over 20 nations represented through June and July. At near capacity, Spruce Meadows was a hive of high performance activity from early June until the last day of the CSI 5* ‘North American, presented by Rolex Tournament in July.
From big, to fast, to bold; the courses presented to the athletes during the Summer Series were diverse and challenging; providing a glimpse of what lies ahead for the world’s best horses and riders at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament running through September 9th, 2018.
As one might expect, the toughest events with the most significant rewards of the Tournament run from Friday – Sunday on the Spruce Meadows International Ring. Beginning on Friday night with the Mercedes-Benz Evening of the Horse. Opening with the 1.60m Tourmaline Cup and the ATCO Six Bar; a favourite event at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament, the night will conclude with the Spruce Meadows’ official colour guard, the Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians), who this year celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the “Last Cavalry Charge”, performing their Musical Ride. And the grand finale: an outdoor concert under the spot lights, performed by the Band of the Royal Logistics Corps.
Saturday features the BMO Nations’ Cup. The top nine teams of the sport’s top competing nations, including the reigning World, European, and Pan American Games champions. Only the top six nations from the first round of this two round event earn a ticket to round two, where anything can happen. Prior to the BMO Nations’ Cup fans will be treated to the Suncor Winning Round, featuring only the top 30 combinations that have qualified out of the 1.5m speed tour.
Sunday of the ‘Masters’ never disappoints. It is simply the highlight of the international show jumping calendar. Considered the biggest day on the annual FEI calendar, a staggering $3,000,000 is up for grabs in the CP ‘International’, presented by Rolex. The most prestigious Grand Prix in the sport, the CP ‘International’ is part of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping and offers the sport’s biggest, most technical and demanding test. After an historic performance in 2015 Scott Brash(GBR), who jumped to the Rolex Grand Slam victory and accomplished what many believed to be impossible, the pressure will be on German great Marcus Ehning coming off his Rolex Win in Aachen in July to see if it is again possible. The likes of Lucina Diniz (POR), BZ Madden (USA), Philipp Weishaupt (GER and Eric Lamaze (CAN), to name but a few, are sure to get in his way.
Outside of the tournament ring the ‘Masters’ is sure to delight the more that 200,000 fans that are expected over the 5 days. There is plenty to see and do for fans of all ages. The Equi-Fair, Carousel and mini trains, shopping in the Plaza and Horizon’s Pavilion, the Spruce Meadows Prairie Dogs and Pony Rides offer a world of entertainment, food and fun.
If the tradition of the military and the horse are of interest, the Household Cavalry and King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery and featuring the Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians) Muscial Ride – Canada’s original musical ride performed daily.
The 2018 Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament is sure to be another memorable edition, not to be missed. Spruce Meadows is “Yours to Discover” September 5th – 9th.