Well-known Langley-area riders Mark Laskin and Hawley Bennett have been nominated to the Canadian Equestrian Team for the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.
Langley’s Laskin was named Canadian Chef d’Equipe of the jumping team.
Laskin was in charge of the victorious Team Canada at the $400,000 Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup held at Thunderbird Show Park.
He described the first-ever win by Canada at the event “bittersweet,” because the team did not qualify for the Nations Cup final in Barcelona in October, missing by just 10 points.
Hawley Bennett of Aldergrove and her horse “Jollybo” were named to the reserve eventing team.
Bennett has represented Canada, and won medals, many times in the past, at the Pan American Games in 2003 and 2011, at the Olympics in Athens in 2004, and in London in 2012, at the World Equestrian Games in 2010 and the World Cup in Sweden in 2005.
In all, Equestrian Canada (EC) and the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) announced Canada will field three full equestrian teams for the Pan Am Games, consisting of 10 women and two men.
The equestrian portion of the Games will kick off with the elegance of dressage July 28, 29 and 31. Eventing will follow August 2-4, with jumping wrapping things up August 6, 7 and 9.
For the Canadian Equestrian Team (CET) it is an opportunity for all three disciplines to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Japan.
Jon Garner, EC Director of Sport was optimistic.
“I have the utmost confidence in this group to achieve the goal of qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo,” Garner continued. “It will require single-minded focus from athletes and support teams alike, and I have no doubt that these teams will produce podium performances in Peru.”
Lima 2019 will bring together approximately 6,700 athletes from 41 nations of the Americas and feature 62 disciplines in 39 sports. It will be the largest sporting event ever held in Peru.
The full list of Canadian equestrian athletes and coaches nominated for Lima is as follows:
Jill Irving (Moncton, N.B.) – Horse: Degas 12; Owner: Jill Irving & Windhaven Farm
Tina Irwin (Stouffville, Ont.) – Horse: Laurencio; Owner: Tina & Jaimey Irwin
Lindsay Kellock (Toronto, Ont.) – Horse: Floratina; Owner: Chloe Gasiorowski
Naima Moreira Laliberté (Outremont, Que.) – Horse: Statesman; Owner: KML S.à r.l.
Reserve: Megan Lane (Loretto, Ont.) – Horse: Zodiac MW; Owner: Deer Ridge Equestrian
Reserve: Belinda Trussell (Stouffville, Ont.) – Horse: Carlucci; Owner: Barbara Holden Sinclair
Dana Cooke (Merritt, B.C.) – Horse: Mississippi; Owner: FE Mississippi Syndicate LLC
Colleen Loach (Dunham, Que.) – Horse: FE Golden Eye; Owner: Amanda Bernhard
Jessica Phoenix (Cannington, Ont.) – Horse: Pavarotti; Owner: Jessica Phoenix
Karl Slezak (Tottenham, Ont.) – Horse: Fernhill Wishes; Owner: Kirk Hoppner & Karl Slezak
Reserve: Waylon Roberts (Port Perry, Ont.) – Horse: Lancaster; Owner: Michelle & John Koppin
Reserve: Hawley Bennett-Awad (Aldergrove, B.C.) – Horse: Jollybo; Owner: Hawley Bennett-Awad & Jollybo Syndicate LLC
Reserve: Holly Jacks-Smither (Hillsburgh, Ont.) – Horse: Candy King; Owner: Holly Jacks-Smither
Reserve: Lesley Grant-Law (Toronto, Ont.) – Horse: Lady Chatterley; Owner: Lesley Grant-Law, Jackie Brown & Steve Brown
Erynn Ballard (Tottenham, Ont.) – Horse: Fellini S; Owner: Ilan Ferder
Lisa Carlsen (Okotoks, Alta.) – Horse: Parette; Owner: Lisa Carlsen
Mario Deslauriers (Bromont, Que.) – Horse: Bardolina 2; Owner: Wishing Well Farm LLC; Horse: Amsterdam 27; Owner: LUJA LLC & Wishing Well Farm LLC
Nicole Walker (Aurora, Ont.) – Horse: Falco van Spieveld; Owner: Nicole Walker
Reserve: Beth Underhill (Schomberg, Ont.) – Horse: Count Me In; Owner: Sandy Lupton
Christine Peters (Ottawa, Ont.) – Dressage
Rob Stevenson (Lakeside, N.B.) – Eventing
Mark Laskin (Langley, B.C.) – Jumping
Prior to being named to Team Canada, all nominations are subject to approval by the COC’s team selection committee following its receipt of nominations by all national sport federations.
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