At the European Showjumping Championships in Rotterdam, the Irish showjumping team has failed to gain one of the qualification places for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year.
The Irish quartet of Cian O’Connor, Shane Sweetnam, Peter Moloney and Darragh Kenny finished the team competition in seventh position out of 15, missing out on a qualification spot by one place.
Both Cian O’Connor with PSG Final and Peter Moloney with Chianti’s Champion jumped clear rounds, while Shane Sweetnam with Alejandro and Darragh Kenny with Balou Du Reventon each had one fence down.
Belgium took the gold medal on 12.07 faults, Germany came second on 16.22 faults, with recent Aga Khan winners, Britain, taking the bronze medal with 21.41 faults.
Winners Belgium, bronze medallists Britain, and France, who also finished ahead of the reigning European champions, Ireland, claimed the three Tokyo 2020 places on offer.
Waterford’s Peter Moloney (13th, 8.75 faults) and Offaly’s Darragh Kenny (17th, 9.78) both qualified to compete in the two-round individual final on Sunday, but following consultation with team management and with their horses owners, they have decided not to jump and will save their horses for the Nations Cup Final in Barcelona in October.
Barcelona will be Ireland’s final chance to qualify for next year’s Olympic Games, with just one qualifying place available in October’s Nations Cup World Final.