Nick Skelton & Big Star of Great Britain
Rideability, pace, and power were the questions asked of the 35 horse and rider combinations that competed over the Round A course of the Olympic Individual Final on Friday, August 19th in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. The top 20 riders return to jump Round B, and a possible jumpoff for Individual Olympic Medals, at 1:30pm local time.
Of the start list of 35 entries, 13 posted clear rounds, successfully clearing the sizable, 1.60m course that featured the return of the open water fence. Fourth in the order of go, Great Britain’s Nick Skelton and Big Star recorded the first clear in the Individual Final, in which all riders returned on a 0-fault score at its start.
For Round B, 27 combinations—including riders with a scorecard of 4 faults—have qualified within the top 20. (All 4-fault rounds have tied, which accounts for the extra rounds.) They will return to jump at 1:30pm local time. If there is a tie for Gold, Silver, or Bronze medals, those top-placing riders will also contest a jump off.
Individual Medal favorites going into Round B include first-time Olympians, Germany’s Daniel Deusser and Kent Farrington from the United States, both posting clears in Round A well inside the time. Another favorite is Olympic veteran and 2008 Olympic Champions, Canada’s Eric Lamaze and Fine Lady, the only pair in the Rio Olympic Games that has yet to accrue a single penalty over the course of four days of competition.