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Jamieson, Gingras, Lachance 1-2-3 in Italy tournament

December 10, 2007

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The first round of the World Trotting Master, a tripartite driving competition being raced in Italy, which matches three-man teams representing Italy, Europe, and North America, was contested on Sunday at Ippodromo Arcoveggio in Bologna, Italy.

The North American team, consisting of Yannick Gingras, Michel Lachance, and Jody Jamieson, took a healthy lead after the four heats that comprised the first round, contested on a rainy evening. They scored a total of 41 points; Europe is second, one point ahead of the host team, 23-22. Among individual drivers, Jody Jamieson leads the way with 16 points, one better than Gingras’ 15.

After Finland\'s Jorma Kontio scored in the first of four races at Bologna, Jamieson won the second and Gingras annexed the third. Italy’s Roberto Vecchione then finished atop the final division.

Lachance, who in his four drives finished fourth, third, second, and then unplaced, is in a four way tie for third with Kontio, Italy’s Roberto Vecchione, and Belgium’s Christophe Martens, the winner of the recent World Driving Championship.

Roberto Andreghetti, who won the 2005 World Driving Championship, is also on the Italian team, along with Pietro Gubellini. Sweden’s Jörgen Sjunnesson joins Kontio and Martens on the European team.

Scoring is being done on a 10-5-3-2-1 basis, with two points being given in the event of a scratch. The drivers of horses who break and gallop for 100 meters or more receive no points and their horses are disqualified, as is the rule in Italy and much of Europe. All four of the heats at Bologna were contested over 1,660 meters--about one mile and 55 yards.

The second leg will be raced at Turin, Italy on Monday, the third at Trieste, Italy on Tuesday, and the competition will conclude on Wednesday at Treviso, Italy. (USTA)

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