Ten equestrian athletes chosen to represent Canada
Source: Equestrian Canada
On July 14, 2016, the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Equestrian Canada (EC) named the ten athletes nominated to represent Team Canada in equestrian at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games from August 5 to 21.
Both eventing and jumping will field teams of four athletes, while two individuals will represent Canada in dressage. The Canadian Eventing Team earned their Olympic berth after finishing sixth at the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France. The Canadian Jumping Team received a team berth after winning the gold medal on home soil at the TORONTO 2015 Pan American Games last July. Although the Canadian Dressage Team did not earn a team berth, spots for two individuals were secured through qualification criteria set by the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI).
The Canadian Equestrian Team’s final preparations for Rio over the next few weeks will include training camps in Florida and Germany. In addition, jumping athletes will compete at the prestigious CHIO Aachen World Equestrian Festival, which began July 11 and will continue through to July 17 in Aachen, Germany.
At the Games, equestrian sport will kick off with eventing, August 6-9. Dressage will follow on August 10, 11, 12 and 15. Jumping closes out the equestrian portion of the Games on August 14, 16, 17 and 19.
Historically, Canada has achieved impressive results at the Olympic Games, earning a total of six equestrian medals. Most recently, Eric Lamaze claimed the individual gold medal in jumping at Beijing 2008. His teammates, Mac Cone, Jill Henselwood and “Captain Canada” Ian Millar also helped secure the silver medal for the Canadian Jumping Team. Millar also set a record at London 2012 by becoming the first athlete in any sport, from any nation, to compete in ten Olympic Games.
A total of 200 horse-and-rider combinations from 43 countries will compete at Rio 2016. Overall, Canada expects to field a team of approximately 315 athletes.
“Canada has a long history of equestrian excellence and I am very proud that these athletes named will be continuing the tradition in Rio. The partnership between athlete and horse is a unique bond that goes beyond athleticism and one that is admired by many. I look forward to celebrating the results of their hard work this summer.” - Curt Harnett, Rio 2016 Team Canada Chef de Mission
“Our Canadian Equestrian Team has worked extremely hard to earn their berths to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and achieved remarkable milestones along the way, from winning Pan Am medals to breaking Canadian records. Our team for Rio also demonstrates how unique and extraordinary our sport is. Not only does equestrian sport display an incredible bond between horse and rider, as one of the only mixed gender Olympic sports, it celebrates gender equality. I know our athletes nominated today will continue to make Canada proud and I look forward to celebrating their success in Rio.” - Eva Havaris, Chief Executive Officer, Equestrian Canada
"I am thrilled to be representing Canada in show jumping in Rio. The Olympics are the pinnacle of sport; for most athletes it starts as a dream, for the fortunate few it is then a goal and, for the lucky ones, it becomes a reality. I feel incredibly privileged to be one of those lucky ones. A huge thank you must be given to our incredible horse owners, our tireless support staff, and the hardworking individuals at Equestrian Canada who make it all possible. There may only be five people named to the Canadian Jumping Team, but the team that stands behind us consists of so many more. I'm looking forward to doing my very best in Rio and making Canada proud!" - Tiffany Foster, London 2012 Olympian
“It is an honour to be chosen to represent Canada at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. These Olympics are so special to me because four years ago my dreams were shattered when my horse Anton had a major injury that took us out of the running for the London 2012 Games. Little did I know he would recover so well and earn a place on the Rio Olympic Team with personal best scores. I could not have accomplished this goal without my amazing family, team and coach. Thank you to Equestrian Canada for all the support and huge organizational challenges getting us all to Rio safely. I will wear the maple leaf proudly in Rio!” - Belinda Trussell, Athens 2004 Olympian
“I’m super excited and honoured to be part of Team Canada again. It means a lot to me to represent Canada with John and Judy Rumble’s Foxwood High at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. I’d like to thank Canada for choosing us and thank my owners, sponsors, friends and family for believing in me. Teamwork makes the dream work. Go Canada!” - Selena O’Hanlon, Beijing 2008 Olympian
“Congratulations to the Canadian equestrian team named to join Team Canada at the upcoming Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil. Canada has a rich history in this sport, and I know our athletes are eager to add a new, exciting chapter to that story. All of Canada is behind you.” - The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities
The equestrian team which will represent Canada at Rio 2016 includes:
- Megan Lane of Collingwood, ON – Caravella
- Belinda Trussell of Stouffville, ON – Anton
- Reserve: Karen Pavicic of Surrey, BC – Don Daiquiri
- Rebecca Howard of Marlborough, UK – Riddle Master
- Colleen Loach of Dunham, QC – Qorry Blue d’Argouges
- Selena O’Hanlon of Kingston, ON – Foxwood High
- Jessica Phoenix of Cannington, ON – A Little Romance
- Reserve: Kathryn Robinson of Kettering, UK – Let It Bee
- Yann Candele of Caledon, ON – Showgirl, First Choice 15
- Tiffany Foster of North Vancouver, BC – Tripple X III, Victor
- Eric Lamaze of Schomberg, ON – Fine Lady 5, Check Picobello Z
- Amy Millar of Perth, ON – Heros
- Reserve: Kara Chad of Calgary, AB – Bellinda
- Chef d’Équipe – Eventing: Clayton Fredericks, Ocala, FL, USA
- Chef d’Équipe – Jumping: Mark Laskin, Langley, BC
- Technical Advisor – Dressage: Dr. Volker, Moritz, Germany
- Chef d’Équipe – Dressage: Christine Peters, Ottawa, ON
Prior to being named to the final Canadian Rio 2016 Team, all nominations are subject to approval by the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Team Selection Committee following its receipt of nominations by all National Sport Federations.
For more information visit www.equinecanada.ca.
Main article photo: Eric Lamaze competing at the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ presented by Longines on June 3 at the CSIO 4* British Columbia Open in Langley, BC. Photo: Aimee Makris/Moi Photography