Eight combinations made it through to the jump-off over course designer Anderson Lima's (BRA) testing track. All eight jumped clear in the second round, so it all came down to speed to determine the finishing order. Bertram, who had the benefit of being last to go, broke the beam in 39.00 seconds, with home rider Natalie Dean and Marigold Sporthorses LLC's Jewel De Kwakenbeek nipping at their heels in a time of 39.02 seconds.
"He's a good horse and very, very careful so you can really ride him at the jumps and normally he doesn't have too many down. I wanted to win this class, but it wasn't a class to take a crazy stupid risk in, so I said I'd just do as good as I can. It was very close, but thankfully it was good enough for today."
Casper is no stranger to North America. At his last visit in 2019 the duo won the World Cup class in Toronto.
"This is the first week back up and at it and he feels great, so hopefully now he's in for a good few weeks."
Bertram has ridden the 12-year-old gelding by Canto 16 since he was six;
“We know each other inside out. He’s taken a bit longer to get to the top level, but he seems to be getting there now. He’s a cheeky bugger but he’s bold and he knows he’s good and has a big character, which is nice.”
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