Young Equestrians

N.J. Rider Leads U.S. Team To Gold Medal in Children’s Nations Cup

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From the left, Jane Tidball, Parker Cliff, Emma Callanan, Alexa Leong, Dylan Laiken, DiAnn Langer and Chris Pack celebrate on the podium after the $1,500 Children's Nations Cup in Langley, Canada. Credits: Rebecca Berry/USEF
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LANGLEY, Canada — A young rider from new Jersey lead the U.S. team to victory in the Children’s Nations Cup competition at the Langley Odlum Brown BC Open on June 2.

The U.S. competed against fellow North American countries Canada and Mexico. Led by Chef d’Equipe DiAnn Langer, the Children’s Team of Emma Callanan, of Tewksbury Township, Dylan Laiken, Parker Cliff, and Alexa Leong stamped their mark, ending on eight faults to claim gold.

“I feel it was an incredible morning of show jumping,” said Langer. “The juniors and the children both rose to the occasion. None of them failed under the pressure.”

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Callanan, and Cocu, Renee Connor’s 12-year-old gelding of unknown breeding, were the pathfinders for the Children’s team and put in two fault-free rounds, allowing the team to start each round on the right foot. This is the second team event Callanan has ridden for the U.S. this year, having aided in a team gold-medal win at CSIJCh Ocala in February.

Callanan, is a 2017 USHJA Gold Star Emerging Jumper Rider, competed on the Zone 2 team at the 2017 NAJYRC. In addition, she was a member of the children’s team at CSIJCh Langley in May of 2017 where she also won the $1,500 Children's Grand Prix.

Laiken (Pasadena, Calif.) and Callao, her 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding were also foot perfect for both rounds, riding second in the order. Unlucky rails in both rounds for Cliff (Sacramento, Calif.) and her 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse stallion, Fanadwest Rebel, resulted as the drop scores. Leong (Sacramento, Calif.) and her 10-year-old Belgium Warmblood mare Hertogin Ter Drie Leien anchored the team, dropping just one rail in each round and sealing the gold-medal win. Leong also contributed to a third place U.S. team podium position in Ocala earlier this year.

The U.S. Junior Team, comprised of Alyce Bittar, Coco Fath, Mattie Hatcher, and Hayden Zadel topped the podium, earning the gold medal on four faults in a jump-off against Mexico.

Langer said,. “All of [the children and juniors] are headed to NAYC [the FEI/Adequan© North American Youth Championships presented by Gotham North]. They clearly are part of our future. They are seeking youth education and competition opportunities and it is paying off for them.”

Stay up to date on the NetJets U.S. Show Jumping Team and Children’s and Junior teams by following USA Jumping on Facebook and US Equestrian on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Use #USAJumping and #FEINationsCup.

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