Olympic Equestrian Final: O’Connor misses final jump-off by 1 point

Heike Holstein on Sambuca during the Dressage Team and Individual Qualifier at the Equestrian Park in Tokyo. Credit: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile. Photo provided by Horse Sport Ireland.

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Team Ireland had three riders going for medal places in the Jumping Individual final in the Tokyo Equestrian Park this morning

This is the first time that three Irish riders have made an individual final; Darragh Kenny riding Cartello, Bertram Allen on Pacino Amiro and Olympic bronze medallist Cian O’Connor on Kilkenny.

Kenny and Allen finished in the top seven fastest times in the qualifiers but all three riders have shown their capabilities of finishing on the podium.

To read more about the excellent qualifying performances by the Irish, click here.

The horses will have to do 14 sets of jumps including some triple fences and a 4m jump over water. They will have 88 seconds to finish the course with a four point penalty for any knocked fences and 1 points for every second over.

Equestrian – Jumping Individual Final

Cian O’Connor was the sixth rider up and Ireland’s first. Riding Kilkenny, he came in after watching many penalties and two retired horse before him.

He started brilliantly, clearing every fence up until the water with ease. This continued with his experience and class shown throughout the course guiding Kilkenny home in 88.45 seconds.

He received no faults but will be disappointed to get one single time penalty. With this high, challenging track it was first after seven horses.

O’Connor and Kilkenny were finally knocked out of the podium positions by the 15th rider. He eventually finished the event in an impressive joint seventh place.

A while later and Allen was up 25th riding Pacino Amiro. He made a quick start showing good space over each obstacle until 6A where a wobble lead to the horse knocking a fence.

He evened himself out again but knew that the medal was now out of his grasp, he knocked over one more fence at 12 before finishing.

Allen and Pacino Amiro finished the event in 15th in a time of 84.64.

The penultimate rider of the event was Ireland’s Kenny on Cartello. The world number nine started very well, casually jumping the early fences. All was going great until a double fence caught the horse off guard and a plank was knocked.

The Irishman continued on and knocked one more fence on his way to finishing the course in 85.11 seconds. This gave him a final position of 17th in the event.

The final had to be decided with a six-way jump-off. Team GB’s Ben Maher on Explosion W got gold, while Peder Fredricson on All In came second and Maikel van der Vleuten on Beauville Z bronze.

Cormac Kenny from Kilkenny was the groom for the Dutch rider that came in third for another Irish contingent at the Games.

These three Irishmen and their horses are not finished with their chances of an Olympic medal and will take part in the team event on Friday morning.

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