Equestrian: Ireland Wins as New Zealand Qualifies After Eventing Nations Cup Stage

New Zealand finished as the highest eligible ranked nation at the 2015 Asia Pacific Eventing Championships. The Asia Pacific Eventing Championship was held in conjunction with the Netherlands stage of the 2015 Eventing Nations Cup. While all nations were eligible to compete only nations from Group F (Africa and Middle East), Group G (South East Asia and Oceania) and the Asian nations of Group C were eligible to qualify to the Olympics. The highest ranked nation in the team competition was given the quota. This stage of the Eventing Nations Cup was held in Boekelo, Netherlands from October 8th to October 11th 2015.

With Australia previously qualified only Japan and New Zealand sent enough athletes to compete for the single spot though Japan only sent the minimum of three. The dressage portion was well dominated by New Zealand as three of their best riders finished ahead of all three of Japan’s riders. By the end of the first stage New Zealand held a massive 31.6 point lead over Japan. The overall competition had Australia in first, New Zealand second and France third.

Disaster struck in the cross-country portion as Toshiyuki Tanaka of Japan was eliminated, effectively ending Japan’s hopes as New Zealand finished with all of its riders. At this point all that is required for New Zealand is for at least three out of their four riders to finish the jumping portion.

While New Zealand had a relatively poor performance in the jumping stage the fact that all of their riders completed the course was enough for them to be given the Olympic quota. The overall team title went to Ireland whom finished with a team score of 174.9 points while the United States and New Zealand took second and third respectively.

This was the final opportunity for nations to qualify a team normally. The only other way to qualify would be if a nation qualifies at least three individuals through the various rankings which can then form a composite team.

Athletes by Nation

  • New Zealand – 4

References

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