img_9179-1-percheronsToronto, ON (CAN) – the pressure continued Friday night as the top international riders went head to head once again in the $50,000 Weston Canadian Open in the Ricoh Coliseum. But first, the ring spotted some more traditional horse power in the form of the six horse hitch, Green Meadows, and harness ponies.

Here’s a breakdown of the winners from the driving classes:

  1. $1,000 Welsh Pleasure Driving JR, AM or Lady Drive: Entry 1294, Jennifer McKeen and Quillane Absolute
  2. $5,000 Single Roadster Pony Canadian Championship: Entry 402, Larry Ella and Moment of Excellence
  3. $2,500 Percheron Six Horse Hitch: Ross Honsberger and the All Star Farms Hitch
  4. $5,000 Hackney Pony Canadian Championship Stake: Entry 403, Karen Waldron and Kilbro’s Irishman
  5. Green Meadows Four in Hand Appointments: Harvey Waller and the Orleton Farm Hitch
McLain Ward aboard Malou

McLain Ward aboard Malou

After a short demonstration and the national anthem, performed by the 49th Highlanders of Canada, it was on to the main event – the $50,000 “Weston” Canadian Open.

There were 11 obstacles on the course designed by Bernardo Cabral (POR), with a time allowed of 69 seconds, and a height of 1.5m.

Vanessa Mannix (CAN) aboard Winslow Bay was the first out the gate, and set the round to beat as she went clear, posting a time of 56.70. Of the field of 22 riders (representing 8 different countries), 10 went clear and victory came down to speed and a matter of seconds. Mannix held the title until Darragh Kenney (IRL) and Cassini Z snatched it away with a clear round and a time of 55.33 seconds. Their victory didn’t last long as McLain Ward (USA) and Malou went clear and shaved 2 seconds of the time to beat, posting a final ride time of 53.31 seconds.

In the end it was Germany’s David Will, aboard Calista, who took the title with a clear round and a time of 51.20 seconds. David Will won Thursday’s $35,000 International Accumulator Challenge aboard Cento du Rouet with his speed (45.46 seconds) and brought it back into the ring with him Friday night – leading him to victory once again.

David Will aboard Calista

David Will aboard Calista

Here’s how the top 10 breakdown:

  1. David Will and Calista (GER)
  2. McLain Ward and Malou (USA)
  3. Jessica Springsteen and Tiger Lily (USA)
  4. Ian Millar and Dixson (CAN)
  5. Darragh Kenney and Cassini Z (IRL)
  6. Vanessa Mannix and Winslow High (CAN)
  7. Jonathon Millar and Bonzay (CAN)
  8. Hyde Moffatt and Granturo (CAN)
  9. Harrie Smolders and Corrada (NLD)
  10. Nick Skelton and Big Star (GBR)

Full results and horse show schedules are available from the Royal Winter Fair website (




The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair is an annual event where city meets country in the heart of downtown Toronto. Highlights of the fair include horse and agriculture shows, shopping and fine dining. More information about the Royal Winter Fair can be found by visiting their site.

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