Ottawa, ON – Canadians Patrice St-Onge and Lisa Coulter finished in a three-way tie for fourth place at the FEI World Reining Masters, held in Oklahoma City, OK, USA on December 3, 2009.
Competitors from 17 different countries, including the United States, Canada, the Dominican Republic, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Czech Republic, France, Great Britain, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Holland and Poland gathered under the flags of their countries to battle for the title of FEI World Reining Masters Champion, many mounted on borrowed horses.
During the Thursday evening performance of the $100,000 FEI World Reining Masters Final, two divisions ran concurrently—$75,000 Open Division, which was open to entrants from every country and the $25,000 Restricted Division, which is open to all countries except those that qualified for the finals of the 2006 World Equestrian Games in 2006 (USA, CAN, SWI, ITA and GER).
Coulter of Princeton, BC, drew the first entry with Hollywood Aces, Bob Thompson’s six-year-old Quarter Horse gelding, and posted a final score of 217.5.
“I drew first and felt that was my biggest challenge. My horse ran hard and tried hard, and I knew the competitors and their horses and how tough the top duos would be. I realized I would have to fight hard to get on the podium and that my horse may be capable of a solid bronze finish. I was very close, so I am pleased with my run and efforts at the Masters this year,” said Coulter, who recently placed first at the 2009 CRI* Monterrey in Monterrey, MEX, with Hollywood Aces. “I would like to thank Bob Thompson for giving me the opportunity to once again reach my goals.”
St-Onge, originally of Valleyfield, QC, currently residing in Gainesville, TX, also earned a score of 217.5 riding Leitachic, an eight-year-old Quarter Horse stallion owned by Babcock, Heckman & Bartlett.
“When I qualified for the Masters, I needed a horse, so I called Jim Babcock and he was very nice to give me the ride on Leitachic,” said St-Onge, who represented Canada at the 2002 World Equestrian Games and 2008 World Reining Championships. “Since I had not ridden Leitachic very much, my goal was to have a solid run. The horse was fantastic, and I was very happy with the result. Hopefully, with a bit more practice, we will have even better performances in the future.”
Nico Hormann of Great Brittan, riding Setting of Sparks, also tied for fourth with 217.5.
First place went to Austrian Rudi Kronsteiner and Smart Spook with a score of 224. Bernard Fonck of Belgium and Great Sun Burst finished in second with 221, and third spot was won by American Pete Kyle and Whizs Bronze Star, scoring 219.
Complete results of the 2009 FEI World Reining Masters may be found at http://nrhafuturity.com/results.php.
The international judging panel included Pete McAlister (FEI C—USA), Francois Zurcher (FEI I—SUI), Brad Kelsall (FEI C—USA), Filippo Masi (FEI I—ITA), Janette Steffl (FEI I—ITA) and equipment judge Donald Flohr (FEI C—USA).
The FEI World Reining Masters is a competition to find the best individual reiner each year. The competition is based on qualifying the best reiner from each national federation for Final which alternates each year between the United States and Europe.