Gonzalez, aboard Martialis, successfully navigated 18 obstacles over 1050m including a steep bank, water jump, and the notoriously challenging Devil’s Dyke, famed for tripping up even the most skilled horses.

“It’s an amazing day,” said Gonazalez, whose only other win at the Summer Series was a tie with Ireland’s Conor Swail in the West Canadian Cup during the ‘Pan American’, presented by Rolex.

“I’m really happy about winning this,” he added. “I jumped the same Derby two years ago here at Spruce. I finished seventh place. The Devil’s Dyke is really difficult, and the time allowed was also quite short, so I was worried about that.”

Second place went to Vaclav Stanek (CZE) and Jasper.

Stanek last month won his first-ever 5* competition, the Duncan Ross Grand Prix, during the ‘Continental’, presented by Rolex. His performance since then, at Spruce Meadows alone, before today’s result, has catapulted him from 1,813th in the FEI world rankings to 718th.

It also made him the first rider from Czechia to win an event of that level at Spruce Meadows, or anywhere on earth.

“Even though I didn’t win today, it’s a dream come true because I always wanted to jump the Derby,” said Stanek, whose country’s flag now proudly adorns the wall of Spruce Meadows’ riders’ pub Time Faults. “It was also the first Derby today for Jasper, so I’m happy with the day today and with the whole show.”

Third place went to Australia’s Katie Laurie, who now lives just outside of Okotoks, aboard New Zealand Sport Horse Django II.

Her delighted family, some visiting from abroad, cheered her on from the stands.

“I was super happy with my horse,” Katie told us. “He's never jumped the Derby. He's actually never even seen the Devil's Dyke before, so he was great.”

A noticeably younger field of 24 daring riders took to charismatic course designer Leopoldo Palacios’ (VEN) creation, which had a time allowed of 158s. Both Stanek and Laurie finished with four faults, as did Canada’s Isis Landsbergen, with Carnaval, who came fourth after finishing over a second longer than Laurie. All the other riders finished with between eight and 48 faults.