Daniel Coyle (IRL) has had to be patient when it comes to World Cup competition. During the 2019-2020 North American League season, he recorded two victories and was preparing to go to the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final when the global pandemic forced the event’s cancellation.
Two years later, Coyle is ready for another chance, and he’s bettered himself. After taking a World Cup win at Toronto (CAN) and finishing second in Las Vegas (USA), Coyle won again Saturday night at the Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth (USA) with Legacy.
The pair bested a three-horse jump-off, crossing the timers of Anderson Lima’s (MEX) short course in 31.47 seconds. McLain Ward (USA) and Callas settled for second (32.60 seconds), with Erynn Ballard (CAN) third (34.94).
Up until this year, Coyle had placed an emphasis on making championship teams for Ireland, and he and Legacy represented their nation at both the 2021 European Championships and the 2022 FEI World Championships. This year, he aimed to improve their jump-off prowess. He has seen his efforts rewarded, utilizing newfound gears Saturday to surpass a swift standard set by Ward. He and Legacy ultimately secured their victory over the final three fences.
“The way the sport has [evolved], you have to be able to go so fast,” Coyle explained. “In the beginning, [Legacy] was always fast, but she didn’t really understand what she was doing. As the night shows, you have to be able to do everything to beat [your competitors].”
Coyle has now assumed the lead in the NAL standings with 66 points. Fellow Irishman Conor Swail (IRL), also with two victories this season, sits second (56 points), while Daniel Bluman (ISR) is third (54).
“I don’t know that being first or second or third in the league [standings] brings you anything when you get to the Finals,” Coyle said, “but it assures you get there, so that’s always good, too!”
The North American League resumes on 28 January 2023 in Puebla (MEX) before concluding in March at Ocala (USA).