BRONZE for NZ in the EQUESTRIAN TEAM at OLYMPICS
Mark Todd has added to his haul of Olympic medals with a team eventing bronze after guiding his tired horse around the showjumping ring in London.
With Germany already having clinched gold and New Zealand having an opportunity of taking the Silver being only 0.20 behind Great Britain.
Mark and Campino were the last of the Kiwis out on Tuesday and unfortunately they picked up seven jumping and time penalties to give the final British rider, Kristina Cook, breathing space to secure silver for a team that includes royal Zara Phillips.
The 2 time Olympic champion says Campino is still relatively inexperienced, is normally a good showjumper. But after giving his all on a tough cross country course at Greenwich Park on Monday, the 11 year old bay gelding felt tired, even over the first couple of obstacles, the first of which he clipped. He then knocked down the first fence of a double combination midway through the round. "He will normally ping off the ground and I was having to help him a bit more than I usually do," Todd said. "He was trying, but his body was saying `I'm really tired'. It was unlucky I had a fence down, but it was lucky I did not have more as well."
Todd finished on 46.50 points, while New Zealand's two other counting performances in a total of 144.40 came from Andrew Nicholson on Nereo, and Jonathan Paget riding Clifton Promise. Nicholson was the best of the team in ending on his dressage mark of 45.00, while Paget had one showjumping fence down for 52.90. Germany's winning tally was 136.00, just ahead of Britain's 138.20.
New Zealand's first medal at the London Games takes the 56 year old Todd's medal tally to five, including individual gold in 1984 and 1988. Nicholson, 50, who like Todd is appearing in his seventh Olympics, has previously won a team silver and a team bronze.