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WEG - Aussie Eventers miss out on medal, but qualify for Rio Olympics
It wasn't quite the finish the Australian Eventing team we're hoping for at the 2014 World Equestrian Games (WEG), slipping from the bronze medal position to finish fifth in the team's score.
But with three riders finishing in the top 20, Australis's eventers have booked their spot at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, one of the major goals coming into WEG.
Sam Griffiths and Paulank Brockagh had the best result show jumping today with only one rail down.
"She jumped beautifully, sometimes you're just unlucky and that's what I felt today. As I went through the flags I thought I was clear but as I looked around I saw the rail down. Sometimes it goes your way, sometimes it doesn't.
"The team achieved one of its major goals and that was to qualify for Rio - so now all attention turns to Rio and preparing our horses for making the next Olympics," said Griffiths.
Sam Griffiths and Paulank Brockagh
Pic by By John Lechner
It was again Olympian Stuart Tinney who showed that experience counts, finishing on top for the Aussies with only two rails down, finishing in 12th position overall.
It was a mixed final day for the Aussies after a sensational cross country round.
Shane Rose & Taurus were first out and were unlucky to have 6 rails down. Griffiths followed Rose to have only one rail down and add 4 points.
Staurt Tinney and Paul Tapner rounded out the Aussie rides, both with only two rails down.
While it edged them out of medal contention, Chef d'Equipe Prue Barrett said the Aussies showed true determination and proved we have the riders to mix it with the best.
"It didn't quite go our way today but what we did do is qualify for the Rio Olympics. We didn't qualify after the 2010 WEG which put huge pressure on our riders leading into London.
"Now we know we've qualified and can purely focus on getting our horses ready for the next Olympics," said Barrett.
Germany finished atop the dias followed by Great Britain and the Netherlands. Full results HERE
Competition at the World Equestrian Games continues on Tuesday, with Australia fielding teams in the jumping, driving and vaulting.
Results, Individual Show Jumping, Eventing
1. Sandra Auffarth/Opgun Louvo (GER) 52.0
2. Michael Jung/FischerRocana FST (GER) 52.3
3. William Fox-Pitt/Chilli Morning (GBR) 54.3
4. Jonelle Price/Classic Monet (NZL) 56.5
5. Maxime Livio/Qalao Des Mers (FRA) 58.5
6. Karin Donckers/Fletcha Van't Verahof (BEL) 59.9
7. Peter Thomsen/Horseware's Barny (GER) 60.3
8. Boyd Martin/Shamwari 4 (USA) 63.9
9. Andrew Nicholson/Nereo (NZL) 64.5
10. Andreas Ostholt/So Is Et (GER) 64.7
Results, Team Show Jumping, Eventing
Gold: Germany, 177.9
Silver: Great Britain, 198.9
Bronze: Netherlands, 246.8
4th: France, 251.5
5th: Australia, 262.5
6th: Ireland, 319.3
For more information see: www.normandy2014.com
Story Equestrian Australia
Picture: Sam Griffiths and Paulank Brockagh. By John Lechner
PDS Carl Hester Collection
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