Tipperary and Ireland’s sole rider Greg Broderick, together with his horse HMS Going Global, sent two poles to the floor, as he began his Olympic first round competition in individual show jumping at Deodora Olympic Park in Rio today.
With temperatures touching 30ºC, the Thurles native and his 10-year-old gelding looked all set for a clear round, but alas the pair knocked the first and second part of a troublesome double hurdle just one fence from home, to finish incurring eight faults.
Brazilian course designer Guilherme Jorge admits to setting a stiff test for today’s Olympic equestrian opener, with the water and final fences both causing horses and riders problems. Twenty four riders did jump clear rounds, while eight riders and their mounts did not finish today’s course.
From a starting field of 75 horse and rider combinations, the pair are now in a tie for 53rd place overall, after today’s first round qualification. Only the top 60 riders were permitted to advance to next Tuesday’s second qualifier and just 45 individuals will be allowed go through to Wednesday’s final qualifier, when the winning top 35 will qualify to go forward to next Friday’s overall final, expected to happen between 6.00pm and 9.30pm (Irish Time).
Broderick will now be aiming for both clear rounds on Tuesday and Wednesday next, thus ensuring a place in the finale.
Meanwhile Kildare woman and Ireland’s Judy Reynolds with her horse Vancouver K; following a terrific display in the Grand Prix Special on Friday, became the first Irish woman ever to reach an Olympic final in Dressage. Mrs Reynolds will be representing Team Ireland in the Freestyle Final on Monday in Rio.
Best of Luck to both Team Ireland riders.