Powell devastated at missing start in Olympics eventing team

Caroline Powell, who won the Badminton Horse Trials in May, says she’s been left flattened at missing a starting place in the New Zealand eventing team for the Paris Olympics.

Powell would be in Paris as a travelling reserve, but had been hoping to make the starting team, which comprises husband and wife Tim and Jonelle Price, and Clarke Johnstone.

Melissa Galloway would make her Olympic debut in the dressage event.

Powell, who won an Olympics bronze medal in 2012, said those named on Tuesday morning had done brilliantly, but that didn’t ease her pain at missing out with her horse, Special Cavalier.

“I’m pretty devastated to be honest with you,” she told RNZ.

“It’s been quite a good year for Cav and she is just getting better and better.

“She’s in cracking form. The hard thing with horses, it’s not us, the horses are the athletes and you just never know what is going to happen.

“We are a bit flat around here, but there is still another day tomorrow.”

Tim and Jonelle Price were seasoned Olympics performers.

Jonelle Price, who would partner Hiarado, would be competing at her fourth Games. She won bronze in the team competition in London in 2012, competed at Rio in 2016 when the team was fourth and again at Tokyo in 2021 when the team was fifth and she was the best placed Kiwi in 11th.

Tim Price made his Olympic debut at Rio and also rode at the Tokyo Games. He would ride 15-year-old gelding Falco in Paris.

The Prices lived in the United Kingdom with their two children.

Husband and Wife Magic - Jonelle Price celebrates with NZL-Tim Price and Ringwood Sky Boy take the Title for the 2018 Burghley Horse Trials.

Jonelle Price said she was trying to recreate the legacy left by equestrians spearheaded by Mark Todd, who won gold medals at the 1984 and 1988 Olympics, and five Olympics medals in all.

“They were pretty big boots to fill, but I think we are coming into this championship with a really strong team of four. Any of this four could have been in the starting line-up so I think that is a first for us for a while.”

Johnstone, who hails from Outram in Otago and would be competing in his second Olympics, said his selection comes after a tough time.

“It has been an incredibly difficult year for me personally after the sudden death of my partner Codey at the end of 2023.

“Having the goal of the Olympic Games which we were both so invested in has kept me going the past six months and I have poured my heart and soul into training and competing my lovely horses this year to make our goal a reality. I know he would be so proud.”

Johnstone would ride 14-year-old British sport horse Menlo Park.

Galloway sais she was delighted to have cracked selection for the Olympics for the first time.

She had a world ranking of 26, the highest ever for a New Zealander in dressage.

“This has been my dream since I was 11 years old and now, 20 years later to be actually realising it is unbelievable.”

She said her horse, Windermere J’Obei W, was in his best shape ever.

Equestrian Sports New Zealand high performance general manager Jock Paget, who won bronze at the London Olympics, said the eventing selection had been particularly hard.

“We had lots of strong combinations to choose from. It was the biggest selection headache I have witnessed in my time but we now have a really strong team who I think will be suitable for what we expect to go into in Paris,” he said.

Dan Jocelyn, James Avery, Monica Spencer, and Samantha Lissington have been named as non-travelling reserves.

The eventing competition begins on 27 July at the Chateau de Versailles in Paris, with the dressage beginning three days later.

According to the news on Radio New Zealand

Related News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button