USA Takes the Lead in First Day of Reining

Sixteen countries are competing for gold at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy.

Special contributor to The American Quarter Horse Journal

Andrea Fappani and Custom Cash Advance qualified to represent the United States at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy during the Kentucky Reining Cup. After the first day of competition in France, Andrea and "Cash" are leading with a 224. The competition continues August 26. (Larri Jo Starkey photo)

After the first round of reining competition August 25 at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy, Team USA was in first place.

Draw 13 was Andrea Fappani for Team USA riding Custom Cash Advance for owners Silver Spurs Equine.  

The National Reining Horse Association $3 million rider and the 8-year-old stallion by Custom Crome and out of Cash In Roan by Topsail Cody  lit up the public in the stands, and the pair finished the pattern with a 224.

That score held until the first part of the competition concluded for the day, and Andrea and “Cash” are currently leading the individual rankings. Cash was the 2013 AQHA world champion in senior cutting.

“Custom Cash Advance has been shown very successfully in the past by Duane Latimer and Jordan Larson and has earned over $200,000 in NRHA competition,” Andrea said. “I’ve only shown him twice before coming to the Games and today I tried to do my best, being careful in the spots I wasn’t confident about.”

The native Italian wanted to make Team USA in 2010 and missed by one point.

“I was pretty disappointed at the time, so I am thrilled to be here in this edition,” he said.

The second horse-rider combination for Team USA, Jordan Larson and HF Mobster (Colonels Smoking Gun-Dun Its Black Gold by Hollywood Dun It), owned by Heritage Farms of Ogden, Utah, closed their NRHA pattern 6 with a 221, putting them in third place overall in the individual standings.

“I’m pretty happy with our run today,” said Jordan who has shown “Hamster” since 2011 and who has won more than $200,000 on him.

Team USA is currently leading the team competition with a 445 and chef d’equipe Jeff Petska was happy with the way his athletes performed.

“Both Andrea and Jordan did a great job today, and we are all very happy with their performances,” he said.

In 2010, at the Alltech Games in Kentucky, Team USA took the gold and Team Belgium claimed the silver.  The battle between the two nations is on in Caen as well.

After the 41 horse-rider combinations had performed today, Ann Poels (Fonck) for Team Belgium, riding Nic Ricochet (Ricochet Rooster-Minnie Nic by SMF Lenas Award), earned the second highest score of the day: a 222.5.  
“I’m really happy with my score and my horse’s performance today,” Ann said. “Until last week, I was supposed to ride another horse but then things changed, and Manuel Bonzano of Italy offered to let me ride Nic Ricochet. Manuel has been successfully showing him in non pro competition and this horse was wonderful for me today. The cheering in the stands for all the reiners was also wonderful!”

The total score for Team Belgium, following Poel’s run and that of Piet Metsdagh – who scored a 216.5 riding RS Spat Man O War – was a 439, which put them in second place in the team standings
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Team Germany is third with a 436.5 thanks to Ludwig Grisha’s performance aboard Ruf Tuf Juice (Little Ruf Peppy-Jokes Smartime by Smart Like Juice). Aboard the horse owned by Fabien Strebel of Switzerland, Ludwig earned a score of 218.5 and also tied for third place in the individual standings with Australian Martin Larcombe who rode Wimpys Cute Tune (Wimpys Little Step –Gwyneth by Mr Melody Jac), owned by XCS Ranch LLC of Gordonville, Texas.

Team Australia closed with a total of 435 thanks to the performance of Shaun Saunders, who slid Sparkin Tinsel (Tinsel Nic-Setting Off Sparks by Shining Spark), owned by Corinna Schumacher of Switzerland, to a 217.

The second part of the reining team competition, which includes 16 nations, of the first individual qualifier, will be August 26.  

Standings at the end of the first day:
1.    USA
2.    Belgium
3.    Germany
4.    Australia
5.    United Kingdom
6.    Canada
7.    Austria
8.    Italy
9.    Mexico
10.    Denmark
11.    Sweden
12.    France
13.    Netherlands
14.    Brazil
15.    Poland
16.    Finland

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