Our fist experience with show jumping came as a result of a gracious offer from TransCanada to join them in the British House for the ‘National‘. The ‘National’ is a show jumping competition featuring some of the best athletes and horses from around the world. The venue, Spruce Meadows, is a facility focused on horse sport, primarily show jumping (although they also have hosted the Western Canadian Fly Fishing Exposition which we attended in 2015 and 2016).
We arrived mid morning at the VIP parking which allowed us a bit of time to walk around the grounds before heading to the British House. The ‘National’ is a 5 day event hosing competitions for beginner to olympic level athletes as well as pony rides and face painting for kids, a shopping promenade, dog agility races, live music and more.
We were welcomed to the British House by TransCanada and treated to a gourmet luncheon and a well stocked and open bar.
With drinks and food in hand we settled in under the awning of the covered patio to watch our first show jumping competition. We were treated to the Rolex Grand Prix event and the TransCanada Winning Round where athletes from around the world competed. Knowing little to nothing about the rules and scoring, we were delighted to have both the running and colour commentary offered by some keen TransCanada employees at the event. The skill and control of riders and horses was astounding as the various jumps were encountered.
The TransCanada Winning Round was won by Canada’s own Eric Lamaze who will be competing for team Canada at the Olympics. The round ended with a parade honouring the winners as well as the emergency responders that aided in the recent Fort McMurray wildfires.
Many thanks to TransCanada for the invitation and hospitality.