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Eric Lamaze rant on Facebook

Eric has posted a scathing rant against the WEG / TIEC today, after the team show jumping where Canada did not fare well (and he didn’t ride the last round). Go to his page to see it.

It’s hard not to read it is sour grapes or excuses after a poor Canadian performance. Especially in light of Bromont’s backing out at well past the 11th hour. Perhaps they should have started a “Save Bromont WEG” Go Fund Me page and had a perfect championships? Surely they could have managed it in 2 years.

Keeping in mind that many other teams managed to step up and post clear or 4 fault rounds, here are Canada’s placings over 3 rounds at the WEG:

Erynn Balard / Darkos Promise: (83.13 time) 3.4 / 8 / 20
Kara Chad / Carona: (87.30 time) 5.48 / 5 / 8
Marios Deslauriers / Bardolina 2: (93.27 time) 8.47 / 11 / 5
Eric Lamaze / Chacco Kid: (82.36 time) 3.01 / 8 / VW

Many countries didn’t send their strongest members to WEG, Canada was no exception. Eric isn’t stupid, he knows this, but meh, honestly it’s not like this kind of outburst is totally out of character for him.


Oh but that said, he’s right that it was probably the worst :lol:


For those who don’t want to go back and forth

Tryon marked my seventh World Championships and, in my opinion, it was the worst one ever held. We heard stories in the lead-up to WEG and were aware that the facility was far from being ready but no one expected to turn up and find a dirty, unfinished venue that looked more like a construction zone than a sports venue. It was shameful. It looked like the organizing committee had made the least amount of effort possible to achieve the bare minimum that they could get away with.

To me, that’s unacceptable.

The stabling, the warm-up ring, and the show ring were adequate, but not what it should be for a world championship. There were lots of empty seats and no atmosphere. There was no shaded area for the riders to watch the competition from. You had to walk through a construction site to get to the VIP area, and the prices the organizing committee was charging were completely unacceptable for what you received. The VIP was disgraceful compared to any other world championship.

Worst of all, the best show jumping horses in the world were forced to compete during the hottest part of the day THREE DAYS IN A ROW. This was poor horsemanship and not in favour of either the horse or the riders. When we were in Kentucky in 2010, they took the weather into account when planning the schedule and we had night classes which were extremely well-attended. In Tryon, they did not recognize the role the heat would play and did nothing to address it.

To blame the hurricane for all the problems is not a valid excuse. There was a lack of effort, lack of horsemanship, and lack of understanding of what it takes to run a World Championships, and a complete lack of understanding of what makes everyone happy to be there as owners, as riders, as sponsors, and as fans.

Venue aside, I do believe it was great sport on a level playing field. Congratulations to the U.S. on an unbelievable championship win and best of luck to the individuals. Whoever wins the World Championship title really deserves it. All the credit goes to the riders, not the venue.

I want to recognize my teammates and the hard work they put into forming the best team we possibly could. It was our goal to be among the six teams to earn Olympic qualification. We tried our best, so it’s disappointing that we weren’t able to do that. I didn’t ride my best on the first day, unfortunately, but I am so proud of my student, Kara Chad, for putting in a great performance on day two to hold us in contention for one of those Olympic spots. The experience she gained was unbelievable. And Mario’s young horse gained experience that should serve us well in two weeks at the Nations’ Cup Final.

I’m looking forward to representing Canada in Barcelona alongside Kara, Mario, and Lisa Carlsen, who was our reserve rider at WEG and a great team player.


It’s hard to agree completely with you on this when 8 of the top 10 rode and there were plenty of others ranked within the top 30. There are star horses here - not all are young or “b.” There are some riders who choose the GCT etc over championship teams and wouldn’t be a consideration at this point anyway (Scott Brash?). Yes, there were younger riders, but that’s not a bad thing. Every star today was greener once. Germany’s Simone is sitting #1 going into the individual. She has ridden very well and fairly earned her spot.

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I don’t entirely disagree with him, but we may differ on the root cause. Yes to unfinished areas, although largely not a spectator issue in week 2. As to why, like you said, Tiramet if Bromont hadn’t been completely useless this wouldn’t be an issue. But why they chose to start those events at the originally scheduled time is beyond me. Those of us on the east side fled to under the stands every break. It has been a FURNACE, and I say this as a person who lives 3.5 hours south and who drove in a Driving trial 2 weeks ago a few miles away at Windridge. I know from heat. This has been right up there.

That said, everyone got to ride in the same heat, and hey, not for nothing, they were not pulling 600 kilos + 3 people over 14+km so there is that.

But Eric has a lifetime of being a pretty gracious sportsman in the public eye so I’m willing togive himthe benefit of the doubt here.


As another who sat in the stands the entire week, I can agree that starting later could have helped some people. It was hot at 4:00 and it took the entire day to run the first rounds so some would have ridden in daylight, some in dusk, some under lights. They would have finished at 2am. There would have been rants about some riders have the advantage of cooler weather. Plus I can only imagine the level of bitching about having to take the shuttle in the dark or find a car in a field or the vendors saying no one was around to shop.

It was unwinable.


I’m not reading this as sour grapes - he’s not blaming the facility issues for his performance. He’s venting his frustration at the organizers and the facility compared to others he’s participated at. Possibly the part about having to ride in the hottest part of the day, but he’s saying it affected ALL horses, not just the Canadian team, and it’s a horsemanship issue.


Yeah, I would tend to agree.


I bet he wouldn’t have posted it if he’d gotten a medal, though.


Canada didn’t have a great showing in any discipline. It speaks far more to our system (or lack thereof) of developing a deep pool of top horses and riders in the sport than it does about the games organizers.


but not for nothing, if the Bromont team had the organizational skills of a mid level manager, maybe Tryon wouldn’t have had to scramble to try and finish this in a tough labor market. I heart Eric more than the average hj fan, and duly noted he has more experience with this management group… but, I’m not compelled by a chunk of his argument.


Is this the “rant”? Not what I’d call a rant in my world! I have no idea what the conditions were like IRL but this seems like measured criticism not a rant!


As someone who is here, it reads as a rant. The event is not perfect but neither is it “shameful” (though that’s a word I might use for Bromont bailing . . . But I digress!). Nor is it fair or accurate IMO to say the organizers did the minimum that they could get away with, as if it was their intent. It was not, and particularly in show jumping week there has been a lot of good IMO. Yes, it’s hot, but that’s a fully anticipated condition in the southeastern US at this time of year. Yeah, a night class would be great, but you can’t reasonably get 120 rounds in a night class so that’s a non-starter for the first two days. IMO he would have been better served to have at least been a little gracious about the parts that went right, and perhaps wait a few days to reflect so it lacks that hint of sour grapes. There are criticisms to be made, lessons to be learned (FEI, I’m looking at you in particular!), but this sounded a little bitter to me.


Agree completely. My husband and I are having a marvelous time. The team show jumping final could not have been better if it was scripted in Hollywood. I will never forget that jump off or the way the crowd exploded afterward.

The comments about the empty stadium have been bothering me. There are more than a few contributing factors to this. 1) the sun was unseasonably hot and brutal. 2) there was enough bad press leading up to this event it would have been a struggle to fill the stands. Every complaint from people ahead of time contributed. 3) Florence. People cancelled. They no-showed at my sold out Inn a few miles from the TIEC. 4) all games passes. People were at other events that had more shade.

I have seats in the covered stadium which was absolutely packed during the last round. And loud!!!


Well it might be inaccurate or exaggerated but it isn’t a rant.

I see “rant” as a genre of expression characterized by a stylistic excess and hyperbole. A rant can be true or not true, or partly true.

Likewise a measured complaint like this might be true, not true, or partly true.

Being untrue doesn’t make a statement into a rant.

And being a rant doesn’t necessarily make a statement untrue though it certainly decreases credibility.


Another point of view from another team
I think Eric was frustrated with the facilities mostly and the heat. He never used that as an excuse for his poor performance.
I am glad that some athletes do speak up… yes, blame Canada as usual, blame Bromont… at least they realized on time they did not have the financial backing to go ahead… but I am sure Tryon made enough assurances and promises that everything would be ready… I blame the FEI for not having the guts to cancel/delay the Games and Tryon for not keeping promises… “They miscalculated the number of grooms” geeze, can’t they check with previous Games/venues/Olympics to figure out the numbers?


My recollection of Atlanta for the '96 Olympics is that they started early. The day of the Nstiins Cip there was a long break between the rounds.


Yeah I think some spectators might be missing the athletes/teams perspective, that just because something seems ok/good enough from a spectator standpoint it might in no way feel that way from a participants standpoint. It’s a bit selfish to think their safety and comfort isn’t at least as if not more important than your own. I agree that from an athlete/team perspective it likely feels as if Tryon did the bare minimum they could get away with. As a former FEI 5* groom, I wish they hasn’t gotten away with it.


Where the heck did anyone say spectator safety and comfort isn’t important?

A former groom (you’ve said it enough - I think we all know)… So you’re not experiencing it first-hand? We saw where the groom and officials’ hotel was to have been built. The foundation had an issue which is why it failed. Evidently they started construction and it failed which is why that wasn’t ready. Not enough time to start over. That’s an engineering contractor fail.

We’ve watched more than show jumping and even spent time in the warm-up and schooling rings and the horses don’t look overheated or distressed.

We’ve eaten breakfast with coaches and the people who work with the horses and they’ve raved about thebWEG. We sat and chatted with owners of the horses in the sj and they were having a blast - actually said so, over and over. Not USA.

Last night we ate dinner inches from one of the sj medalists and not a word was said (I wasn’t trying to listen, we were that close). Only positive. A team celebrating their results (5th) was at another table.

It appears that not everyone is upset.