Caen, France—Sept. 6
The show jumping for today is half over here at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, with 29 riders having just finished their first course on this final individual qualifying day. Beezie Madden dropped from first to third when Cortes ‘C’ ticked the back rail of the oxer at fence 5. Sweden’s Rolf-Göran Bengtsson took the lead with his clear round on Casall Ask.
Next the top 23 riders jump a different track, beginning at 3:48 local time. Only the top four after that course will advance to tomorrow’s Final Four for individual medals.
“I still feel like my horse jumped fantastic, and we’re still in the top four so far, so I think we’re in good shape,” said Madden. “I think maybe I let him shift a little off to the side, and that let him lose a little momentum. I thought he jumped high and clipped it coming down, and that can happen.”
Fellow U.S. rider McLain Ward climbed the learderboard from 13th to sixth with a clear round from Rothchild.
“I’m thrilled with him,” said Ward. “I changed my plan a little bit as I watched a few. At this point the jumps are so big that the horses’ strides and the ground they’re covering is getting bigger and bigger than it would in a normal class. But he’s doing everything I ask of him, and he’s such a fighter.”
Patrice Delaveau moved up two spots to sit second on Orient Express HDC for France. Sören Pedersen’s third-ranked Tailormade Esperanza de Rebel had three rails down to fall into 18th.
The biggest surprise of the competition came when hometown favorite Pénélope Leprevost’s Flora de Mariposa stumbled on landing from the water and fell, eliminating them from the competition. Both walked off course.
But the buzz in the crowd had barely died down when the next rider, Belgian Gregory Wathelet came to grief at the Rolex triple. His Conrad de Hus opted out of the last oxer, clearing on re-approach but putting 15 faults on the board.
Follow along with the live results on the World Games website.
Check out all the Chronicle’s show jumping coverage here, and follow along with all the news from all the sports at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.