Tiffany Foster started riding in Langley, and is anxious to return here for the Nations Cup. (Moi Photography)

Langley’s darling set to compete on home turf

Tiffany Foster cut her equestrian teeth here and always looks forward to returning to Thunderbird.

Langley was where Tiffany Foster started her equestrian training.

Since age 14 she’s been impressing national audiences and has been part of the international circuit since 2011. Her impressive record even includes competing at the Olympics in London in 2012 and in Rio in 2016.

Now, she comes back to Langley to hopefully qualify for another shot at Olympic glory by way of the FEI (International Federation for Equestrian Sports) Nations Cup League event at Thunderbird Show Park.

“My favourite thing about jumping is the dynamic between the rider and the horse,” she said in an email interview with the Langley Advance. “I think it’s such a unique sport that allows a human to communicate with an animal and when you feel the horse want to win as much as you do, there is really nothing else like it.”

Foster began her training in Langley with Brent and Laura Balisky before moving to Toronto to train with Eric Lamaze in 2006. That switch in location marked her push for Olympic gold. Foster now trains in Wellington, Florida and Vrasene, Belgium.

As one of the four team members competing for Canada at Thunderbird, Foster knows how important this event is to her teammates as well as the spectators. She sees competing on native soil as a huge plus.

“I 100 per cent think having this Nations Cup on home turf gives us an advantage over the other teams,” she said. “A Canadian crowd is always super enthusiastic and it really gets me motivated to do well. I know my horses love to hear the cheers as well.”

At this event, she will be riding Victor who has been her equine partner for the last seven years.

“We know each other very well and he is an incredible horse,” said Foster. “He’s 15 years old now so he’s extremely experienced and jumped double clear in the Nations Cup here last year so we are hoping to do it again.”

Foster will be competing in both the Nations Cup, as part of team Canada, and the Grand Prix, as a single horse and rider team.

She’s proud of being part of Thunderbird’s history, and it shows in how she sees the events contributing to Langley.

“I think it’s very important for the community of Langley to support this, and other equestrian events, because Thunderbird Show Park is a world-class facility and is providing an opportunity to see some of the best show jumpers in the world compete in your backyard,” she noted. “A lot of work goes into hosting an event like this and the more people who come out to watch, the better it is for everyone involved. If you are a fan of showjumping this is something you do not want to miss.”

Foster and Victor welcome local support cheering them on and hope old friends and new will be spectators at the events.

See related stories:

• International event brings top equine to compete in Langley

• Langley Tbird spectators: What to watch for at the show

• New base material keeps Langley show rings dry

• Langley Tbird: Reflections of then to now

• Thunderbird events in Langley are designed as a family affair

• In advance: Langley Tbird prepares for thousands

• Global teams vie for a win at Thunderbird in Langley

• Horses a life-long driving force for Langley entrepreneur

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