Thirty-six riders qualified throughout the week for the RBC Grand Prix of Canada, presented by Rolex. Any rider with hopes of victory had to pilot their horses over the 540 metre course designed by FEI Course Designer Anthony D'Ambrosio (USA) and leave all the fences up in a time under that allowed of 81 seconds. It was a challenging track, but six riders representing six nations rode clear rounds and made it into the jump off.
Matthew Sampson (GBR) grew up watching Spruce Meadows on TV with the dream of competing and winning a big FEI 5* event in the International Ring - today was that day. Sampson aboard Fabrice DN laid down a quick, clear ride in the jump off with a time of 38.93s. Even #5 ranked rider in the world -Conor Swail (IRL)- could not catch him as he posted a time of 39.14s and would settle for second.
"It's my first 5* Grand Prix win and for it to be at Spruce Meadows - it's a dream come true." Matthew Sampson (GBR) on winning at Spruce Meadows. "I grew up watching the greats (Michael Whitaker, John Whitaker and Nick Skelton) compete here, it's what I worked for."