USA Equestrian (formerly AHSA) announced today that U.S. riders produced a gallant performance at the World Final of the Samsung Nations Cup Series (Jumping) in Madrid, Spain on September 23, 2001, against tough competition and received a warm reception for their participation in challenging circumstances.
The team, with one rider less than the other six teams, did not have the benefit of a discard score. Clare Bronfman (Charlton) scored 5 & 0 faults in rounds one and two respectively; Alice Debany Clero (CEO) - 0 & 8; Richard Spooner (Robinson FRH) - 2 & 4. The USA was not far off the pace when joining Spain on a seven-fault tally as round two began.
"We know we are the underdogs," Alice Debany-Clero had said during the draw the previous day, "but the terrorists tried to paralyze our country last week and by coming here to compete we want to show them that we will not lie down because of what they did." Standing in as Chef d'Equipe, Debany-Clero kicked off the American attack with a foot-perfect round from CEO in the first round. Claire Bronfman looked to be on the way to doing likewise until hitting the last with the big-jumping Charlton who also picked up a single time fault while Richard Spooner steered the gray, Robinson FRH, to a clean jumping round with just two time faults showing on the clock.
American chances faded when Debany-Clero dropped two fences in the second round and although Bronfman, who has clearly built up an excellent partnership with the massive gelding Charlton, got it absolutely right this time to go clear, the U.S. finished with a score of 19 to leave them in seventh position after Richard and Robinson put a foot in the water.
1. Holland 8 faults
2. Belgium 9
3. Spain 12
4. Germany 16
5. France 16
6. Italy 16
7. USA 19 (First round - 7 faults / 233.30 time & Second round - 12 faults /226.12 time