Riders grip Olympic reins

OTTAWA– Today, 19 riders and their equine partners were welcomed into the elite ranks of the Canadian Olympic Team as Equine Canada nominated the athletes who would represent Canada in the sports of Dressage, Eventing and Jumping in London this summer.

“I am extremely excited to have been chosen to represent Canada at my 10th Olympic Games”, said Ian Millar. “I am very proud of the Team that has been chosen by Equine Canada and Jump Canada to represent Show Jumping at this year’s Olympic Games in London. I believe we will do Canada proud”.

“It’s so wonderful to see the whole team coming together like this,” said Mark Tewksbury, Canadian Olympic Team Chef de Mission for London 2012. “These riders and their equine partners add a whole new, exciting dynamic to the nominees to day and we’re just thrilled to have every one of them joining us in London.”

“It is exciting not only for me, but for all Canadian equestrian fans to officially applaud these outstanding athletes for being nominated to the Canadian Olympic Team,” states Kerri McGregor, Canada’s Equestrian Team Leader. “They have already become heroes in our sport and their continued dedication and achievements will be inspiring us all to wave the maple leaf like crazy both in London as well as all over Canada!”

The 19 riders nominated to the Canadian Olympic Team include:

DressageJacqueline Brooks (Cedar Valley, ON) with D Niro owned by Brookhaven Dressage; Ashley Holzer (Toronto, ON) with Breaking Dawn owned by Ashley Holzer and P.J. Rizvi, and Pop Art (Reserve) owned by Rusty Holzer and Moreen Nicoll; David Marcus (Campbellville, ON) with Chrevi’s Capital owned by Deborah Miculinic; Diane Creech (Caistor Centre, ON) with Devon L owned by Douglas and Louise Leatherdale; Pia Fortmuller (DeWinton, AB) with Orion owned by Pia Fortmuller and Dagmar Fortmuller.

EventingPeter Barry (Dunham, QC) with Kilrodan Abbott owned by Peter, Susan and Dylan Barry; Hawley Bennett-Awad (Langley, BC) with Gin & Juice owned by Hawley Bennett-Awad and Linda Paine; Rebecca Howard (Salmon Arm, BC) with Riddle Master owned by Blithe Hill Farm; Michele Mueller (Port Perry, ON) with Amistad owned by Julie Anna Pring; Jessica Phoenix (Uxbridge, ON) with her own Exponential; Shandiss Wewiora (Oakville, ON) with Rockfield Grant Juan owned by Amanda and Jorge Bernhard.

JumpingYann Candele (Caledon, ON) with Carlotta Singular La Magnifica owned by Susan Grange; Tiffany Foster (Schomberg, ON) with Victor owned by Torrey Pines Stable and Artisan Farms; Jill Henselwood (Oxford Mills, ON) with George owned by Brian Gingras; Eric Lamaze (Schomberg, ON) with Derly Chin de Muze owned by Ashland Stables and Torrey Pines Stable and Verdi (Reserve) owned by Artisan Farm and Torrey Pines Stable; Ian Millar (Perth, ON) with Star Power owned by Team Works; Jonathan Asselin (Calgary, AB) with Showgirl owned by Attache Stables; Jenna Thompson (Calgary, AB) with her own Zeke; and Lisa Carlsen (Spruce Grove, AB) with La Boom owned by La Boom Syndicate.

“It is an amazing achievement for an athlete to be named to an Olympic Team and many of our Team members have been named to multiple Olympic Teams,” said Michael Gallagher, President of Equine Canada. “I am so proud of their consistent international performances over the past quadrennial, which has inspired record-level participation in our sport during tough economic times. I wish them all the best in London and know that equestrians all across Canada will be joining with me to cheer on our team.”

“We are very happy to welcome Equine Canada’s Nominees to the roster of the Canadian Olympic Team,” said Marcel Aubut, President of the Canadian Olympic Committee. “With the addition of these outstanding athletes, Canada’s team grows not only in numbers but in skill and determination as well.”