Nick Skelton Brings Home Britain’s First Individual Show Jumping Gold

Nick Skelton and Big Star are the 2016 Olympic champions of show jumping.
Credit : Photographie Eric KNOLL

Friday 19 August - 20h27 | Meghan Blackburn

Nick Skelton Brings Home Britain’s First Individual Show Jumping Gold

Nick Skelton and Big Star are the 2016 Olympic Show Jumping Champions. Sweden’s Peder Fredericson and All In took the silver, and Canadian pair Eric Lamaze and Fine Lady 5 won the bronze.

It came down to six horse and rider pairs from six nations in the jump-off for the individual medals in the show jumping at Rio. Fifty-eight-year-old Skelton, in his seventh Olympic Games, was the first to contest Guilherme Jorge’s shortened course, and he laid down one of only two triple clears, stopping the timers at 42.82—the time to beat. Individually fifth and members of the gold medal winning team in London 2012, Skelton and Big Star came back four years later to capture Great Britain’s first ever individual gold medal in show jumping.
 
Eventer turned show jumper Fredericson of Sweden was the other triple clear, but was slower on All In, coming in at 43.35 seconds.
 
Last in the ring, Lamaze set a sizzling pace, and would ultimately be the fastest round, but after a tight turn of 360 degrees, he and Fine Lady 5 had the second to last fence down. The 2008 individual Olympic champion posted a time of 42.09 seconds, the fastest 4-fault round.
 
Reigning Olympic champion Steve Guerdat and Nino de Buissonets of Switzerland were second in the ring, but had the first rail down. They ended up right out of the medals, in fourth, at 43.08 seconds.
 
American combination Kent Farrington and Voyeur, known for their speed, unfortunately pulled down the first and last rail of the short course. Voyeur jumped all other rounds clearly throughout all days of both his and Farrington’s first Olympic appearance. They finished in fifth place, in front of Qatar’s Sheikh Ali Al Thani and First Devision, who also had 8 faults, but came in at 45.03 seconds.
 
In Round B, Germans Daniel Deusser and Christian Ahlmann both had 4 faults, which was a surprise, causing them not to advance to jump-off. American McLain Ward jumped clear to finish on 4 faults in both rounds, but only double clears went on to the final test.
 

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