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Jennie Brannigan and Cambalda

BOEKELO, The Netherlands — Every member of the Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team that entered the show jumping arena Oct. 14 at the Military Boekelo CCIO3* leapt up the leaderboard and helped the U.S. team improve to sixth place in the final Nations Cup standings.

Leading the way for the Americans were Jonathan Holling of Ocala, Fla., and Downtown Harrison, Constance Ann Holling’s Trakehner/Thoroughbred gelding, who were just shy of a double-clear round. They jumped flawlessly, but came in just over time and ended with 1 fault.

“I was really thrilled with him,” said Holling. “Other than possibly shaving a second off a turn, he was pretty exceptional out there today.”

Downtown Harrison’s performance helped Holling jump up the leaderboard 25 places and finish the Event 31st overall.

The other two U.S. horse and rider combinations also helped themselves and the team with good show jumping performances. Jennie Brannigan of West Grove, Pa. and Nina Gardner’s Cambalda, the 2010 Galway Downs International CCI3* Champions, ended up with an eight-fault round Sunday and finished 46th overall. Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen bounced back from a setback on the cross country course Saturday with a four-fault round in the show jumping ring. Holly Becker and Kathryn Kraft’s 9-year-old Irish Sport Horse Gelding improved by 16 spots in the final standings, finishing 55th overall.

On his second horse, his wife Jessica’s Universe, Montgomery (Kennett Square, Pa.) was the highest-placing American. He and Universe knocked down a lone rail Sunday and with those four faults finished on a total score of 61.00, 22nd overall.

The Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team finished with a total score of 212.40. Germany, New Zealand, and France remained first, second and third, respectively. Germany’s total score was 149.
“It’s kind of a funny situation,” added Holling. “We come over here, and we’re pleased with the performance, but we want to be competitive.”

Holling and all four members of the Land Rover U.S. Eventing team were competing at Boekelo as part of the Land Rover Competition and Training Grants program. FEI Nations Cup eventing is relatively new and the team experience, one made possible by the Land Rover grants, was an invaluable one.

“I hope it sticks around and that it becomes a bigger deal,” Holling said of the Nations Cup format.

The fourth member of the U.S. team, Phillip Dutton, was eliminated after a fall on the cross country course Saturday.

Although no U.S. athletes were involved, there was drama atop the individual leaderboard on the final day. Germany’s Michael Jung entered the day with a rail to spare over New Zealand’s Andrew Nicholson, but the resilient Kiwi, riding Quimbo, put the pressure on with a clear round. It turned out to be a little too much for Jung and Halunke FBW. They looked unbeatable heading into the day, but an eight-fault round dropped them to second and gave Nicholosn and Quimbo the win.

MORE ONLINE: For full show jumping results and the final individual leaderboard go to http://bit.ly/210B_NT_USEF

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