Vrasene, Belgium – Carlene and Andy Ziegler’s Artisan Farms has acquired Zigali P S for Canadian Olympic Champion Eric Lamaze. The Ziegler’s generous patronage of Canadian show jumping was recognized earlier this month at CSI4*-W Toronto, Canada, where they were presented with the prestigious Jump Canada “Owner of the Year” Award for the second time in appreciation of their support of Lamaze and fellow Canadian Olympian Tiffany Foster.
Ridden for the past year by 23-year-old Daniel Neilson of Great Britain, Zigali P S has quickly amassed an impressive record in International Equestrian Federation (FEI) sanctioned competition. The nine-year-old bay Dutch Warmblood gelding (Kigali x STB-H Palfrenier) won grand prix events in the spring before helping Great Britain score a second place finish in the Nations’ Cup at CSIO5* Gijon, Spain. It was also in Spain that Neilson and Zigali P S placed third in the €145,000 1.60m Grand Prix of Gijon.
“It’s a horse that Gilbert knew about and had seen,” said Lamaze in reference to agent Gilbert de Roock of Belgium. “I saw the video and very much liked it; the horse has a lot of thoroughbred in its look. The horse has had a lot of results and seemed to be at the right age with the right mileage. Everything in the horse’s career has been positive, so we were attracted to that to begin with. In trying the horse, it confirmed everything that we thought.”
“We think it’s a great prospect,” said Andy Ziegler. “We’re very excited, and we can’t wait to see Eric and the horse competing together. It ought to be a great second grand prix horse alongside Powerplay.”
Zigali P S will join Lamaze’s current top string, which is lead by Powerplay, a nine-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Casall x Limbus), purchased by Artisan Farms in May of this year. With Powerplay, Lamaze enjoyed strong results at CSIO5* Spruce Meadows Masters in Calgary, AB, and was one of two riders to produce a double clear effort in the €1,500,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations’ Cup Final at CSIO5* Barcelona, Spain.
“Powerplay is my leading horse, and we need to try to preserve him for next year’s World Equestrian Games,” explained Lamaze, who has contested the past five consecutive World Equestrian Games, winning the Individual Bronze Medal in 2010 with the great Hickstead. “In talking with Andy and Carlene, they were very supportive. Once we realized what we had in Powerplay, we also realized that we need to aim him at major events and championships. Powerplay needs a back-up, and Zigali is capable of jumping at the same calibre. Having a second top horse will make Powerplay’s schedule a little easier, and allow me to do more shows. It makes it fun, and it makes it exciting!”
Lamaze continued, “Zigali is a winner; the results are there to prove it. That’s what really caught our attention. We were drawn to this horse and knew he was on the market. There was a lot of action, and we were quick at the right time. We’re excited to add him to our string of horses.”
In addition to Powerplay, Lamaze has several up-and-coming mounts, including the new acquisition, Dublin. Formerly named Casanova 439, Dublin is a six-year-old grey German-bred gelding (Cobra x Calido).
“I can’t say enough great things about how supportive Artisan Farms is of our careers, and the Canadian team in general,” said Lamaze, who will wrap up his 2013 competition season at CSI5* Paris, France, and CSI5* Geneva, Switzerland, in December. “They have provided great strings of horses for both Tiffany and me. We are so appreciative. This would be impossible without their support.”
Tiffany Foster, 29, has ridden alongside Lamaze on four Nations’ Cup teams this season in Wellington, FL, twice in Calgary, AB, and in the €1,500,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations’ Cup Final in Barcelona, Spain. Her top mounts include Victor, an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Elmshorn x Grandeur), and Verdi III, an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Hors La Loi II x Cantus). Artisan Farms also recently purchased Brighton, a seven-year-old dark bay Dutch Warmblood gelding (Contender II x Quick Star) for Foster.
In addition, Artisan Farms LLC is part of the group that purchased Showgirl as a prospective 2014 World Equestrian Games mount for Yann Candele. In their competition debut at CSI4*-W Toronto, Candele won a record fourth consecutive Canadian Show Jumping Championship title.
Artisan Farms is based in Vrasene, Belgium, and Wellington, Florida. Committed to the continued improvement and promotion of competitive show jumping, Artisan Farms is the presenting sponsor of the Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series, now entering its’ fourth year at the 2014 FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida.