U.S. leads in Nations Cup competition to qualify for Barcelona finals
- March 29, 2017
- By SARA CAVANAGH
Despite being defeated by Ireland in the two Nations Cup competitions held in this country, in the most critical aspect of these two events the U.S. leads Canada, Mexico and El Salvador in the race to qualify for the all important finals in Barcelona.
The U.S. has 90 points towards qualifying for Barcelona from its second place finish in Ocala, but it’s dangerously close, as Canada has 80 points for its third place finish and Mexico has 70 for fourth, Columba was fifth and El Salvador withdrew after the first round while Venezuela was eliminated in the first round.
Two more Nations Cups remain for qualification, at the Coapexpan Equestrian Club in Xalapa in Mexico on Friday, May 5 and in Langley, Canada on June 2, and with only 20 points separating the U.s, Canada and Mexico anything can happen.
One of the most significant aspects of the two Nations Cup is that two completely different United States teams were fielded, showing a depth of horses and riders never enjoyed by the U.S. in the past.
When Robert Ridland took over as chef d’equipe after the London Olympics in 2012, he said that he would put one, two or three younger, unproved riders with two veterans, and that plan has resulted in success and, more importantly, in the depth that the U.S. now enjoys.