Billy Twomey and Cian O’Connor qualified today (Saturday) for the next round of the Olympic show jumping competition, with O’Connor going clear but Twomey picking up four faults that will influence his starting position in the second qualifier and will affect his total score at the end of the three qualifying rounds.
Cork-born Twomey was first of the Irish into the arena at Greenwich, but a touch of the planks by Tinka’s Serenade towards the end of their otherwise perfect round put the unwanted four penalties on his card.
Meath’s O’Connor was third-last to jump with Blue Loyd and produced a textbook round that left him with zero faults, and will aid the 32 year-old in his bid to qualify for the final.
A total of 32 riders of the 75 starters finished on a clear round, with eight picking up a single time fault and 11 incurring four faults. The remainder had penalty scores ranging from five to 22. The tough course also produced four eliminations, including top US rider Beezie Madden with Via Volo.
There are two more days of competition to face before Wednesday’s two-round final, where the top 35 will compete, and with just the 20 best horse-and-rider combinations going into the last round to do battle for Olympic medals.
The second Olympic show jumping qualifier takes place on Sunday, starting at 11 am, and will feature the 60 riders who qualified today.