British hopes of finishing in the medal zone disintegrated at the Markopoulo Olympic Equestrian Centre in Athens, Greece today. Britain started the day in the bronze medal position but slipped to an eventual seventh place by the finish.

Richard Davison and Ballaseyr Royale rode a measured and accurate test fulfilling the mare’s potential to score 68.542 in the early part of the day’s session,

Richard told HHO: “It couldn’t have better. Royale pulled out all the stops.”

Sadly for Nicola McGivern and Active Walero, Olympic dreams faded when an initial good start to the test fell apart in the canter section and the final piaffe on the centre line. The pair scored 66.458 providing the discard score for Britain.

The team competition has provided highs and disappointments for Britain — but for less than half a percentage the team would have finished in fifth place.

For the eight Olympics in succession Germany took home team gold, helped by a score of 78.208 by team anchors Ulla Salzgeber and Rusty. In second place were a jubilant Spanish team who were pushed up by a score of 74.667 by Beatriz Ferrer-Salat with her 18-year-old Beauvalais. Just scraping into bronze, the United States defeated the Netherlands to win its third team medal in a row.

Individual results after grand prix

1, Ulla Salzgeber (Rusty) GER 78.208;
2, Beatriz Ferrer-Salat (Beauvalais) ESP 74.667;
3, Anky van Grunsven (Salinero) NED 74.208;
4, Martin Schaudt (Weltall) GER 73.417;
5, Deborah McDonald (Brentina) USA 73.375;
6, Jan Brink (Briar) SWE 73.250;
=12, Carl Hester (Escapado) GBR 70.667;
21, Richard Davison (Ballaseyr Royale) GBR 68.542;
25, Emma Hindle (Wie Weltmeyer) GBR 67.500;
34, Nicola McGivern (Active Walero) GBR 66.458.

Team results

Gold. Germany 74.653;
Silver. Spain 72.917;
Bronze. United States 71.500;
4. The Netherlands 71.264
5. Denmark 69.333;
6.Sweden 68.917;
7. Britain 68.903.