The Plains, Virginia - The United States Nations Cup team leads following the first day of the inaugural FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing competition in North America at the Land Rover Great Meadow International (GMI) presented by Adequan® with a two-phase score of 132.3 penalties. Great Britain is second with 157.2 penalties and Canada is third with 171.7.
The FEI Nations Cup has a unique format at GMI with dressage taking place in the morning and show jumping in the afternoon on day one and culminating with the exciting cross country phase on the second and final day.
The U.S. team had an outstanding first day with three out of the four going double clear in show jumping to enter the final day of competition on their dressage score. Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen were clear with a two phase score of 36.3 penalties. Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Fugitive also went double clear scoring 47.2 penalties. Boyd Martin and Welcome Shadow left the rails intact to enter cross country on 48.8 penalties and Lauren Kieffer had one rail on Meadowbrook's Scarlett to end the day on 54.6 penalties.
Riding for Great Britain, Rosalind Canter and Zenshera dropped one rail to score 54 penalties. Ben Way and Willows Tipster knocked down a rail and incurred four time faults for combined score of 68.7 penalties. Justine Dutton and Huck Finn had three rails down to finish on 73.4 penalties. Jodie Amos and Wise Crack fared the best going double clear scoring 49 penalties.
"I am really, really excited to be here. It's an incredible opportunity and all of us competing are really grateful for this opportunity," said Amos. "We couldn't have been more welcome, the facilities are second to none. It's a real big opportunity for all of us and we are hugely grateful to be here."
For Canada, two riders were double clear: Jessica Phoenix on Bentleys Best with 44.1 penalties and Colleen Loach on Qorry Blue D'Argouges on 53.5 penalties. Selena O'Hanlon and Foxwood High had two rails for 59.6 penalties and Waylon Roberts had 12 penalties for a two phase score 66.2 penalties on Kelecyn Cognac.
Individually, the U.S. tops the first three places of the leader board. Going into the cross country phase, Montgomery and Loughan Glen are the overnight leaders. Maya Black and Doesn't Play Fair are second with 41.4 penalties and Lauren Kieffer is third on Veronica with 43.7 penalties.
Montgomery and Loughan Glen impressed the crowd with an outstanding dressage test and in the afternoon, maintained the lead in the show jumping phase by negotiating the Marc Donovan designed course with no time or jumping faults. "He went in and jumped great," said Montgomery. "It helps to have an arena like this and footing like this. He jumped great and I couldn't be happier to be where I am now."
In the show jumping phase riders competed for an extra prize. Farmvet offered a $500 certificate to the competitor who exhibited the best "fist pumping" after their round. Colleen Loach of Canada wowed the crowd and the judge with her enthusiasm to take home the check.
The FEI Nations Cup competition culminates on Sunday with the cross country phase at 9:00 AM, The closing ceremony is scheduled for mid-day. For more information, please visit www.greatmeadowinternational.com