Calgary, Alberta – Tani Zeidler of Calgary, AB, was the third highest ranked Canadian competitor at the conclusion of the North American World Cup League.
Yann Candele was the top Canadian with a total of 71 points followed by Karen Cudmore with 49 points. Zeidler was a close third, with a total of 48 points earned throughout the World Cup qualifying season, while Eric Lamaze finished fourth with 44 points.
Canada receives two invitations for the 2011 World Cup Final to be held in Leipzig, Germany, from April 27 to May 1. When Candele passed on his invitation, it was offered to Zeidler as the next in line.
“To be third overall among the Canadian competitors, and knowing how long it has been since someone qualified from western Canada, makes me very happy,” said Zeidler, who is originally from Edmonton and is now based in Calgary.
However, Zeidler has made the difficult decision not to compete in the 2011 World Cup Final with Ranville, her 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding.
“It was a really tough decision,” said Zeidler, who has never before competed at the annual World Cup Final. “Even though it would have been great experience, I didn’t feel that it was right time for myself and Ranville.”
Knowing that Lamaze, the 2008 Olympic champion, was behind her for an invitation also factored into Zeidler’s decision.
“I had Eric Lamaze, who is currently ranked second in the world and has a real shot of winning, behind me in the rankings, and I just couldn’t take his spot,” she explained. “He can go and be very competitive, so it just wouldn’t be right. That’s really what made the decision for me.”
Zeidler was based in Wellington, FL, for the winter season with approximately 12 horses including those of her 12-year-old daughter, Julia Tops, who competes in the low junior jumper, junior hunter, and equitation divisions. While Zeidler is self-taught, Julia is coached by renowned equitation trainers Missy Clark and John Brennan.
Zeidler will now focus on competing in California this spring before heading back to Canada to compete at Thunderbird Show Park in Langley, BC, in May. From there, she will return home for the Spruce Meadows summer tournaments in Calgary, AB. Zeidler hopes to compete in Grand Prix events with both Ranville and Loving Dancer, an 11-year-old German-bred gelding formerly ridden by Switzerland’s Pius Schwizer.
Zeidler is based at Zeidler Farm just south of Calgary in DeWinton. The world-class facility features a grand prix arena with natural obstacles and an oversize indoor riding arena, and is also home to Zeidler’s breeding program. For more information, please visit www.zeidlerfarm.ca.
Photo: Tani Zeidler of Calgary, AB, pictured riding Ranville, finished third among the Canadians in the North American World Cup League. Photo Credit – Parker/Russell - The Book LLC 2011