Wiltshire-based rider among French eventing team for Rio Olympics

  • France’s eventing team for the Rio Olympics has been named:

    • Karim-Florent Laghouag and Entebbe De Hus
    • Mathieu Lemoine and Bart L
    • Astier Nicolas and Piaf De Bneville
    • Thibaut Vallette and Qing Du Briot

    Reserve: Nicolas Touzaint on Crocket 30

    Astier Nicolas is based in Wiltshire. He won the CCI4* at Pau last year with Piaf De Bneville and the pair were on the bronze medal-winning team at the 2013 European Championships in Malmö.

    Thibaut Vallette made an impressive championship debut at last year’s European Championships at Blair Castle, picking up individual bronze on Qing Du Briot and leading the team to bronze too. France had to collect a qualification for Rio at the Europeans last year, as they had lost the qualification gained at the 2014 World Equestrian Games when Maxime Livio’s ride Qalao Des Mers had a positive dope test.

    Karim-Florent and Entebbe were also on the Blair team, although they didn’t complete individually as they had a fall across country. They bounced back with fifth at Pau CCI34* last autumn and third in a CIC3* at Chatsworth this spring.

    Mathieu Lemoine and Bart L also contributed to the bronze medal in Scotland last year with 16th place individually.

    The fourth member of the Blair team, Tom Carlile, has not been selected and it was announced today that his top horse Sirocco Du Gers was ruled out of selection due to an inflamed splint bone. Tom was also long-listed with the eight-year-old grey stallion Upsilon, but has not made the final cut.

    With the Australian team named yesterday, most of the big hitters in the eventing competition have now shown their hand in terms of selection. The German squad run at Aachen this weekend and the selection will be finally confirmed after that, but the likely quartet has already been announced.

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