According to the Spruce Meadows website, Jaime Azcarraga of Mexico won the 2014 RBC National Grand Prix in Calgary on Saturday. Azcarraga, who was riding the horse Anton in this prestigious North American equestrian event, posted the fastest time in the jumpoff.
Azcarraga was the only rider to jump clean in Saturday's morning session of 13 riders. In the afternoon, Mexico's Enrique Gonzalez, and Americans Kristen Coe, Jonathan McCrea and Kent Farrington also jumped clean.
Then in the jump off, Azcarraga was once again clean and posted the fastest time among the equestrian riders who were clean. Azcarraga posted a time of 46.48 seconds, which was seven one hundredths of a second faster than McCrea on Special Lux.
Gonzalez was the only other rider to jump clean in the jumpoff. Gonzalez posted a time of 48.90 seconds.
Farrington, interestingly was almost a full two seconds faster than Azcarraga. However, the two-time defending champion of the CN Reliability Grand Prix had a rail down in posting a jump off time of 44.50 seconds. As for Coe, she finished in fifth place with four faults and a jump off time of 46.73 seconds.
The top Canadian was Eric Lamaze of Montreal, Quebec. Lamaze, who won the gold medal for Canada at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, placed a disappointing 11th on Power Play. Lamaze had a clean ride until the last jump when he knocked a rail down.
Azcarraga was overjoyed with his victory, calling his week at Spruce Meadows the greatest week of his life. At 54 years of age, Azcarraga has represented Mexico at four Olympic games--the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona and the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Azcarraga, according to www.aarp.org, Azcarraga was Mexico's oldest Olympian at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. The native of Mexico City was 52 years old at the time.
The RBC National Grand Prix is the first of four major equestrian competitions at Spruce Meadows on the 2014 calendar. It is followed by the Atco Power North American Queen Elizabeth II Cup on Saturday, July 5, the BMO Nations' Cup on September 7 and the CN Masters International on September 8.