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Equestrian Stars Compete in 2013 BMO Nations' Cup at Spruce Meadows in Calgary


Equestrian Stars Compete in 2013 BMO Nations' Cup at Spruce Meadows in Calgary

- First responders receive complimentary tickets to BMO Suite as a show of appreciation for their heroic work during the June flooding crisis in southern Alberta

- Germany defends its 2012 championship title in $350,000 show-jumping team event

- "Captain Canada" Ian Millar has led the team on more than 30 occasions in this event and hopes to vault Canada back to the top

CALGARY, ALBERTA -- (Marketwired) -- 09/03/13 -- National teams from eight countries are scheduled to compete in the 2013 BMO Nations' Cup, one of the richest team show-jumping events in the world with a cash prize of $350,000. On Saturday, September 7, Canada's premier show-jumping event, the Spruce Meadows "Masters" Tournament, will host the BMO Nations' Cup competition featuring some 15 jumping efforts, covering 530 metres and a time allowance of 80 seconds per round.

Organizers hope fans will come out en masse to break the current attendance record. Last year a record crowd of 80,961 people were thrilled to witness a close finish at the 2012 BMO Nations' Cup, with Germany emerging as the champion.

2013 BMO Nations' Cup Teams


 
1.  Canada - 2008 Olympic Silver Medalist and 2006 BMO Nations' Cup Winner. 
2.  Belgium - Seeking its first BMO Nations' Cup win. 
3.  France - 2011 BMO Nations' Cup Winner; 1993 BMO Nations' Cup Winner. 
4.  Germany - BMO Nations' Cup Winner in 2012 and 2007; reigning World and
    Nations Cup Top League Champions. 
5.  Great Britain - 2012 Olympic Team Gold Medalists; 2013 European
    Champions; ten BMO Nations' Cup wins - more than any other country. 
6.  Ireland - Three-time winners of the BMO Nations' Cup; Two European Top
    League Nations Cups this year. 
7.  Switzerland - Seeking its first BMO Nations' Cup win; led by Olympic
    Champion Steve Guerdat. 
8.  United States - 2010 BMO Nations' Cup Winner, 2004 and 2008 Olympic Team
    Gold; looking to better their 2012 Olympic performance. 

The 2013 Canadian Team, led by new Chef d'equipe Mark Laskin, includes show-jumping fan favourites Ian Millar, Eric Lamaze, Mac Cone and Tiffany Foster.

"The BMO Nations' Cup showcases the best show jumping horses in the world, ridden by athletes who demonstrate boldness, strength and control," said Robert Hayes, Senior Vice President, Alberta & NWT, BMO Bank of Montreal. "BMO is proud to support Spruce Meadows and the 'Masters' Tournament as it grows in status, popularity and excitement every year."

BMO is also donating 96 tickets to "First Responders" such as firefighters, EMTs, utility responders, police, and search and rescue volunteers, from the Foothills Municipal District, in appreciation of their heroic efforts during the June flooding crisis in southern Alberta.

"The BMO Nations' Cup is a leading international event in our sport," said Linda Southern-Heathcott, President, Spruce Meadows. "For the athletes it's a highlight of the international calendar. We're thrilled to feature the reigning Olympic, World, Pan American and European Team Champions."

"BMO Financial Group has been a cherished and respected partner for 38 years with Spruce Meadows and each year is eager to help us tell a new story of thrilling equestrian team competition," noted Southern-Heathcott.

BMO customers who show their BMO debit or credit card can participate in the BMO Power of Blue program, which offers great client experiences during the Spruce Meadows Masters Tournament - including a chance to ride on the BMO float in Saturday and Sunday's Parade of Nations.

The BMO Fan Centre, located in the Plaza Terraces, will host special fan-favourite activities from Friday September 6 to Sunday September 8, such as:


 
--  Autographs from the best show jumping athletes in the world on Friday; 
--  Complimentary BMO Enviro Bag when you show your BMO debit card or credit
    card; 
--  Face painting, caricatures, interactive games including the "BMO Free
    Kick" soccer kicking cage, freestyle soccer shows and appearances by BMO
    the Bear; plus 
--  Musical entertainment during the entire week. 

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $549 billion as at July 31, 2013, and more than 46,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

About BMO and the Equestrian Community

As the founding sponsor of Spruce Meadows, BMO Financial Group has a long and proud history of supporting equestrian sport in Canada. This is the 36th year that BMO has sponsored the BMO Nations' Cup at Spruce Meadows, attracting the top international show jumping teams to compete in Canada. In addition, BMO has proudly sponsored Canadian Equestrian Team member, Ian Millar for over 24 years.

For a tournament schedule visit the Spruce Meadows website at www.sprucemeadows.com. Contacts: Media Contacts: BMO Financial Group Laurie Grant (604)665-7596 laurie.grant@bmo.com

Internet: www.bmo.com Twitter: @BMOmedia Contacts: Spruce Meadows Katie Macleod (403)974-4232 katie.macleod@sprucemeadow.com

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