Britain has qualified for the team showjumping final at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games tomorrow evening by finishing in 10th place after the second leg of competition today.
British team first-timer Scott Brash (pictured) improved dramatically on his performance yesterday to just have four faults for a foot in the water with Intertoy Z today.
“I’m a lot happier today, he jumped excellently,” said Scott. “I’m a bit gutted about the water, I thought he’d jumped it, but he must have just touched on it. He’s not a great speed horse, so the course suited him better today and I rode him better than yesterday.”
Michael Whitaker ended up as Britain’s discard score today after having the planks after the water and the final oxer down on GIG Amai.
“I’m obviously disappointed, but I’m pretty pleased with the way he jumped,” he said. “I gave him a big kick at the water and after that he got keen and it all got a bit disorganised.”
Robert Smith, who went clear this morning on Talan with one time-fault, is in eighth position individually after two rounds, while David McPherson (Chamberlain Z) also contributed to the team score today with just four faults at the water.
Tomorrow’s competition will be over the same track as today’s, with some alterations to dimensions of fences. The water jump will also be replaced by another fence — potentially good news for Britain as Intertoy Z and Chamberlain Z both faulted there today.
Germany is leading the team contest after today’s competition, with Brazil in the silver position and the USA in bronze. But the scores are very close, with six teams within one fence down and Britain only six marks behind Germany.
“We’re sitting pretty here tonight as the one-two-three, but we could be five-six-seven tomorrow,” said Brazil’s Rodrigo Pessoa at the press conference.
Rodrigo (HH Rebozo) is second in the rolling individual standings to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Khaled Al Eid (Presley Boy).
There has been some confusion about the format for tomorrow’s competition, but a statement just released has clarified matters. In the evening, starting at 7.20pm (00.20am Thursday in Britain), the top 15 individual riders — either competing as individuals or whose teams are not in the top 10 — will jump first in reverse order. The top 10 teams then jump in reverse order, so Britain’s riders will be first to go in each rotation. The final team placings are decided after this. Only the top 10 teams are still in the running for team medals.
In the afternoon, starting at 1pm (6pm in Britain), all team members whose teams were placed below 10th, plus individuals who are not qualified for the evening, will jump. This session will take place in reverse order of individual classification.
Log on tomorrow to find out where Britain’s showjumping team finishes, full report on the WEG showjumping in H&H out 14 October.