Britain’s William Fox-Pitt and horse Chilli Morning exhibit a stellar performance in day one of eventing’s dressage discipline. The 47-year- old and three-time Olympic medalist earned applause for testing a 37.0 penalty score just 10 months after being induced into a coma. Rio is Fox-Pitt’s fifth Olympic appearance and could possibly be his best if he keeps exhibiting dominance.
Australia’s Christopher Burton falls short behind Fox-Pitt by a mere .60 points. He’s looking to make a comeback from London and help his team bring home a title.
Eventing’s man to beat, Germany’s Michael Jung holds the No. 3 spot after undergoing his first test. Jung scored 40.90 penalty points. Jung doesn’t fall far behind Fox-Pitt and Burton. If he continues his ever so long dominant run, he will be the third equestrian individual eventer to win back-to-back gold medals.
Jung’s teammate Sandra Affarth, individual eventing bronze champion of London, topped the leaderboard after today’s morning session, but fell to the No.4 spot by the end of the day.
Astier Nichols of team France claims the No.5 spot with a penalty score of 42.00 this morning, followed by teammate Karim Langouag. Lagnouag scored 43.40 penalty points.
Mark Todd represents New Zealand in the No.6 spot with a penalty score of 44.
Tim Lipps of the Netherlands, Sam Griffiths of Australia, and Clark Montgomery of the U.S. all remain within .6 penalty points of each other making it a close race.
Germany picks up where they left off in London, dominating eventing. The team leads with a combined score of 82.50. Three of the four gold medalists from London have returned to compete for Germany. Michael Jung and Sandra Auffarth hold the No.3 and No.4 spot at the end of day one providing a promising future for Germany. Germany’s second golden girl, Ingrid Klime will test tomorrow along with teammate Julia Krajewski.
Australia takes No.2 after day one with a combined score of 83.90. The team is looking to fly their flag high again. After a shocking all and taking home the gold in Germany a few weeks ago, Australia is looking to continue their dominance. The team has a strong chance of doing so with Christopher Burton and Sam Griffiths both with top ten performances. Stuart Tinney and Shane Rose must test well tomorrow to hold Australia’s top spot.
As predicted, Great Britain, France, New Zealand, Ireland and USA are all in the running for an Olympic title after each rider undertook their dressage test.
Great Britain is looking for a stellar performance from three-time Olympic medalist, Pippa Funnal.
USA has high hopes for riders Phillip Dutton and Laura Kieffer in Sunday’s dressage test to put the team in a good position at the end of the first round of eventing.
Day two of eventing’s dressage will air tomorrow, Sunday Aug. 7 at 9:00 am EST.