Geneva, Switzerland – Canada’s Eric Lamaze finished second in the €200,000 Rolex World Cup Grand Prix held Sunday, December 12, in Geneva, Switzerland, in his final competitive appearance of the 2010 season.
Lamaze of Schomberg, ON, concluded four consecutive weeks of indoor competition in Europe by placing second in the €200,000 Rolex World Cup Grand Prix. The final results mirrored the current Rolex Rider Rankings as Kevin Staut of France, currently ranked number one in the world, took the victory over Lamaze, currently ranked number two in the world. Staut’s jump-off time of 32.50 seconds riding Silvana de Hus gave him the win over Olympic Champions Lamaze and Hickstead, who stopped the clock in 32.65 seconds. Sweden’s Rolf-Goran Bengtsson, currently ranked fifth in the world, placed third with a time of 32.88 riding Quintero La Silla.
“It was a difficult first round, and then in the jump-off and it was extremely close,” said Lamaze, who collected €40,000 for his second place finish. “It was really, really fast, with three of us finishing within half a second of each other.”
On Friday evening, Lamaze contested the €250,000 Rolex Top 10 Final, which sees the top 10 ranked riders in the world going head to head. Lamaze and Hickstead had one rail in the second round to finish third, again claiming €40,000 in prize money.
“The course was hard, and we ended up having a rail in the jump-off,” said Lamaze of his performance with Hickstead, a 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood breeding stallion owned by Ashland Stables and Lamaze’s Torrey Pines Stable. “I am really happy with our results, and I think it is great that we are able to have Canadian representation in these important international competitions.”
Geneva was the fourth and final stop on Lamaze’s indoor tour which began in Maastricht, The Netherlands, followed by Brussels, Belgium, and Paris, France.
At CSI4* Maastricht, Lamaze won the €20,000 Milcon Prix on November 19 riding Coriana van Klapscheut, an eight-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare. At the CSI5* Gucci Masters show jumping tournament in Paris, France, the pair won the €50,000 Le Figaro Prix on December 3 with owners Carlene and Caitlin Ziegler in attendance. It marked the mare’s first time competing in the 1.60m grand prix events, which is the top level of show jumping sport.
“Our results in Geneva were a good way to finish the year,” said Lamaze, who will now travel to his winter base in Wellington, Florida, to contest the 12-week Winter Equestrian Festival. “The past four weeks were really great for my horses, and the young ones got some good experience and exposure. It was fantastic that Hickstead could finish out the year like this.”
All of Lamaze’s horses will now be shipped to Florida, with Hickstead having time off to concentrate on his breeding duties. Lamaze plans to start Hickstead back in competition near the end of the Florida circuit and have him fit and ready for the European spring season.
Photos: Olympic Champions Eric Lamaze and Hickstead finished second in the €200,000 Rolex World Cup Grand Prix on Sunday, December 12, at CSI5*-W Geneva, Switzerland.
The top three finishers in the €250,000 Rolex Top 10 Final, from left to right, Denis Lynch of Ireland (second), Steve Guerdat of Switzerland (winner), and Eric Lamaze (third). Photo Credits – Courtesy of Rolex