It was a matter of who would blink first in a jump off for the Team Silver Medal this evening between the U.S. and Sweden.  And it came down to the last rider for each team, when all previous riders had put in clear, quick rounds.  With the U.S. over seven seconds ahead at that point, Sweden decided to take the Bronze, which they were very happy with, and save their horses for Friday.  " /> It was a matter of who would blink first in a jump off for the Team Silver Medal this evening between the U.S. and Sweden.  And it came down to the last rider for each team, when all previous riders had put in clear, quick rounds.  With the U.S. over seven seconds ahead at that point, Sweden decided to take the Bronze, which they were very happy with, and save their horses for Friday.  " /> It was a matter of who would blink first in a jump off for the Team Silver Medal this evening between the U.S. and Sweden.  And it came down to the last rider for each team, when all previous riders had put in clear, quick rounds.  With the U.S. over seven seconds ahead at that point, Sweden decided to take the Bronze, which they were very happy with, and save their horses for Friday.  ">
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Diary from Athens - Showjumping Part II

Jan Mansfield

It was a matter of who would blink first in a jump off for the Team Silver Medal this evening between the U.S. and Sweden.  And it came down to the last rider for each team, when all previous riders had put in clear, quick rounds.  With the U.S. over seven seconds ahead at that point, Sweden decided to take the Bronze, which they were very happy with, and save their horses for Friday.  It is their first Olympic show jumping medal since 1928.  Sweden’s King Carl-Gustav was in the stands cheering the team on.

Ian Millar just squeaked into Friday’s individual. This evening when Millar again lowered two fences and added two additional time faults, it still was not clear whether he would make the final.  It was left to how the other riders did and also to how things would work out when the International Olympic Committee (IOC) rule that a maximum of three entries from each country could advance was applied.  The computers did the math, and he ended up 44th overall.  The top 45 advance to the final.

Germany's victory gallop following their gold medal - photo ©Janus Communications

Some questions have started to be raised about the footing in the show jumping arena.  It is quite obvious that the grass gets chewed up very quickly in the taking off and landing areas, with bare dirt quite visible.  And in light of the apparent bowed tendons suffered by two horses earlier in the day, German course designer Olaf Petersen was asked about it at a press conference this evening.  He said that the footing is fine, but the jumps will be moved around the arena.

Tomorrow (or rather, today – it’s 3:30am) the dressage riders ride their Freestyle for the medals.

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Equestrian journalist Jan Mansfield is attending the Olympics under accreditation from Gaitpost Magazine.  Known for her ability to find interesting behind-the-scenes stories, Jan brings extensive knowledge and insight into covering the equestrian events. Jan will also be sending stories and photos from other venues in Athens as she works on her assignments with various mainstream publications. Jan can be reached at januscom@shaw.ca

 

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