Tight at the Top After First Round of Olympic Team Jumping
Brazil, Germany, The Netherlands, and Team USA all tied for the lead on a zero score after the first round of team jumping at Deodoro Olympic Park in Rio de Janiero today, with France trailing by just a single time fault going into tomorrow’s second-round medal decider.
Canada lies sixth on a four-fault tally, and the top-eight qualifying group is completed by Sweden and Switzerland, each carrying eight faults. Fifteen nations competed in today’s first round, and amongst the seven teams that did not make the cut were the defending Olympic champions from Great Britain.
Once again the open water proved the bogey fence on the Guilherme Jorge’s course, and London 2012 team gold medalist Nick Skelton was penalized there with Big Star in an otherwise copybook tour of the new track. And when his teammates Ben Maher (Tic Tac) and Michael Whitaker (Cassionato) posted five-fault results when leaving a fence on the floor and also exceeding the 81 seconds time-allowed, and then John Whitaker had a nightmare round for an uncharacteristic 23 faults with the mare Ornellaia, it was all over for the British contingent.
On the other end of the spectrum the Americans, Dutch, and Germans all posted three clears in a row. For Team USA, Kent Farrington (Voyeur) and Lucy Davis (Barron) are both Olympic first-timers, and when their colleague and double Olympic team gold medalist McLain Ward also kept a clean sheet with Azur the Americans were done and dusted
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