Matching bandages, different coloured shoes, tiny brave vaulters and emotional voiceovers — vaulting has it all, says H&H's head of sports Pippa Roome
1. Attention to detail in costumes — the Swedish squad even had one purple shoe and one white one (right).
2. Flyer bravery — the flyer is the tiny one in a team who goes up the top and they seem to get dropped more often than I’d be comfortable with if I was one of their mothers…
3. The Hungarian flyer — special plaudits to this one. She got dropped from quite a height, got up, cried in the middle of the arena, then went in for this move (left). How amazing is that?
4. The German team (above, main picture) — they did a fantastic routine with lots of impressive high up moves for the flyer. They did drop her near the end, though…
5. The South African team — whose freestyle was set to a voiceover of a Nelson Mandela speech.
6. Matching bandages — the Russian horse, Gorky Du Prieure, had bandages which matched his vaulters’ outfits, with blue flowers on them (right). Nice.
7. Lunger skill — several horses, including Switzerland’s Will Be Good and Canada’s Bankey Moon, didn’t really want to come into the arena today, but their lungers persuaded them in and then handled them brilliantly to produce as smooth a canter as possible for vaulting on.
8. All-girl freestyles — the Swiss team looked fantastic in their purple outfits and pulled off a difficult routine with aplomb to win today’s freestyle. Particularly impressive was the fact they were an all-female team — and none of them were particularly big — but they managed to do moves lifting the flyer well above their heads (left) with confidence and polish.
9. The Brazilian flyer (right) — she is simply minute, enabling the team to go for all sorts of imaginative high up moves. In the compulsories, each squad member has to vault onto the horse unaided — goodness knows how she manages it.
10. New Zealand’s flying flyer — this all-female squad performed an impressive manoeuvre where the flyer leapt from the arms of the vaulters on the horse into a cradle formed by two other vaulters on the ground.
Apologies that the pictures with this blog are not brilliant — it’s just a bit of fun! We hope you enjoy it.