Wednesday 20 July - 16h25 | Léa Errigo, Yeelen Ravier and Johanna Zilberstein
The most notable jumping absentees from the Olympics
Almost all national selections for the Olympic games in Rio have been revealed. This year, it should be noted that major names of the discipline won’t appear on the Olympic tables. Some riders were not chosen, others had injured horses. GrandPrix-Replay has listed the names of those great riders who won’t be in Rio.
Top horse: Orient Express*HDC
Best results: Runner-up in the 2010 world team championship, double runner-up in the 2014 world championship.
Championship experience: Two European championships (1997 and 2013), two world championships (2010 and 2014), two Olympic games (1996 and 2000).
Why he’s not going: Orient Express*HDC was unfortunately injured during the 5* Valkenswaard Grand Prix in August 2015, before returning to competition last March, during the 2* Cagnes-sur-Mer Grand Prix. With five perfect runs to his record, one victory in the closing 3* Grand Prix and a sixth place in the 5* Grand Prix in Antwerp in late April, the stallion seemed to be back on track. But at the 5* La Baule Grand Prix, Patrice Delaveau seemed to be mounting a champion in poor form. Last June, the couple was called for an ultimate test by Philippe Guerdat, at the 5* Rotterdam Grand Prix. But the couple fell short of expectations, as the stallion’s decreased once again. This marked the end of the Olympic dream for the couple, as the stallion lacked a few weeks of preparation in order to be ready. There’s still hope, however, for the fans of the Frenchman and his bay: the couple finished second at the 3* Knokke Grand Prix, last Saturday.
Top horse: Good Luck
Best results : Bronze medalist at the London 2012 Olympics with Blue Lloyd 12, runner-up at the European team contest in 2000 in Hartpury with Normandy.
Championship experience: two Olympic games (2004 and 2012), two World Equestrian Games (2002 and 2010) and four European championships (2003, 2007, 2009 and 2015).
Why he’s not going: After successfully returning to the Nations Cup in Europe last April, Cian O’Connor was finally not chosen by Robert Splaine, the national Irish manager, who favored Greg Patrick Broderick over him. A surprising choice considering the efficiency the rider has shown in every Olympic games and Good Luck’s impressive jumping abilities. As a small consolation prize, he was chosen to be part of the reservists with Bertram Allen.
Top horse: Ohlala
Best results: Champion of the USA, two bronze medals at the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto with Ohlala.
Championship experience: Olympic games in Sydney in 2000, World Equestrian Games in Lexington in 2010, Pan American Games (2003, 2007, 2015).
Why she’s not going: Despite her consistency on the international circuit, Robert Ridland, the national coach, favored the young Lucy Davis over her. Ohlala, who’s 12 years old, could still take part in the next Olympic games.
Top horses: Hello Sanctos, Hello M’Lady and Hello Forever
Best results: European runner-up in single events and European champion in team events in Herning in 2013, Olympic champion in team events in 2012.
Championship experience: European championship (2013), World Equestrian Games (2010 and 2014), Olympic games (2012).
Why he’s not going: After unfortunately suffering an injury in early 2016, Hello Sanctos hasn’t seen a single competition arena in five months. The champion, who has won twelve 5* Grand Prix, will never be able to attempt to win another Olympic medal, as his owners have decided that if he did go to Rio, it would be his last championship. Another heavy blow: Hello M’Lady, the Scotsman’s other mount, has also been convalescing for several months, since March, when she was injured during the 5* Grand Prix in Doha. Also on Di Lampard’s long-list with Hello Forever, the former world leader was finally ruled out, as the ten-year-old chestnut was considered too young.
Top horses: Ferro Chin vh Lindenhof, Status and Citizenguard Cadjanine Z
Record: World champion in single events in 1999, Olympic champion in 2004, silver medal in single events at the Pan American Games in 2007.
Championship experience: Pan American Games (2007 and 2011), World Equestrian Games (1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012).
Why he’s not going: In reality, the Brazilian master will be at the Rio Olympics, but as a reserve with Citizenguard Cadjanine Z, who already took part in the 2012 London Olympics with Gregory Wathelet. But unless there is an accident, the 2004 Olympic champion will not tread upon the Deodoro Stadium track. A huge disappointment for a rider who hasn’t missed a single edition of the Olympic games in 24 years.
Top horse: Fibonacci 17
Best results: Vice European champion in team events in 2015, in Aachen with Fibonacci 17.
Championship experience: Olympic games (2008 and 2012), World Equestrian Games (2006 and 2010), European championship (1999, 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2015).
Why she’s not going: Used to major events, the German rider, despite her experience, will have to settle for a reservist position. She said she was disappointed with this decision, especially as she performed extraordinarily all along the season with her gray. But it’s always very difficult to find a place in the sun among the big German names.
Top horse: Molly Malone V
Record: Earlier this month, the young rider finished third at the 5* Cascais Grand Prix with Hector van d’Abdijhoeve.
Titles: Despite a very prolific career as a junior rider, Bertram Allen has so far not claimed any title as a senior rider.
Championship experience: European championship (2015), World Equestrian Games (2014).
Why he’s not going: His non-selection for the Rio Olympics was much written about. For several months, Bertram Allen seemed to be in good shape, but the head coach Robert Splaine finally chose Greg Patrick Broderick. The young rider, perhaps demoralized, seems to be going through a difficult phase since the announcement of his non-selection and is suffering a series of poor performances. He’s however on the list of reservists, with Cian O’Connor.
Top horses: Citizenguard Taalex, Algorythem
Best results: European runner-up in Aachen in 2015 with Conrad de Hus, fourth in the team classification at the World Equestrian Games (2006 and 2014) and one edition of the Olympic games (2012).
Why he’s not going: To everyone’s surprise, it was with Algorythem that Gregory Wathelet was chosen by Dirk Demeersman, the Belgian manager, in the long Olympic list. The couple displayed nice things, but Citizenguard Taalex was the one everyone was expecting in the Olympic pre-selection, the European runner-up and the chestnut horse have been on a positive slope since the start of the season. But once again, managers work in mysterious ways and Dirk Demeersman chose Jérôme Guéry and Nicola Philippaerts to go to Rio. It’s a pity for Gregory, who, in addition to being a key component for the Belgian squad, clinched one of the two Belgian places. But the affair that opposed the Belgian federation to Constant van Paesschen during the World Equestrian Games in Caen, in 2014, probably weighed in when it was time to consider Citizenguard Taalex.