Eleonore Elstone and Jody Schloss performed their Individual Championship test in front of more than 10,000 adoring fans of para-dressage the fourth day of Para-Dressage competition on Sunday, September 2, at the 2012 London Paralympic Games.
Elstone of Langley, BC, moved up three spots for her Individual Championship test to finish in seventh, with a score of 68.226%, riding Zareno, owned by Franklin Posmus, in the morning at the equestrian venue in Greenwich Park.
“My test today was better than my first test,” said Elstone when asked about how her Team test differed from her Individual Championship test. “Zareno was really on and he wanted to perform in the ring. We had one mistake, but we are getting there.”
“I was happy with his energy, his way of going and his focus,” added Elstone. “I am really looking forward to riding my freestyle on Tuesday.”
Riding her own horse Inspector Rebus, Schloss of Toronto, ON, earned a score of 67.700% in the Grade 1a Individual Championship test this afternoon, which was good for 11th place.
“In my Team Test, I was worried about getting through it, but my horse noticed everything,” said Schloss. “During this test my horse was really good. I was talking to him the whole time to keep him calm, and he listened to me the whole time.”
“My hope for this competition was to do my personal best, and I feel that I have done that for my first two tests,” continued Schloss.
The three best scores from the Team and Individual Championship tests were combined to determine the overall team results and medals. The Canadian Team finished in eighth place out of sixteen nations. Team Great Britain won the gold medal with a score of 468.817. Silver was awarded to Germany with a total score of 440.970, while the team bronze medal went to Ireland with 428.313.
“I am so pleased with the consistency that Eleonore is showing,” said Andrea Taylor, National Team Coach of the Canadian Paralympic Equestrian Team. “All the comments from the judges are coming back really positive about her horse and her riding, which is fantastic and it just has to continue on that way.”
“The amount of effort that Jody put in to learning her tests and going over every detail with Mary Longden makes me so proud of her,” continued Taylor. “She kept Rebus marching and on the bit, and to see her go in the ring and really improve in the more difficult test is quite an accomplishment.”
The Individual Freestyle Tests for Grades 1b and II will take place on September 3, while the final days of competition will wrap-up with the Grade 1a, III and IV Individual Freestyle tests on September 4.
A strong support team has accompanied the riders and horses to England, including: Andrea Taylor (National Team Coach), Mary Longden (Assistant Team Coach), Elizabeth Quigg (Chef d’équipe), Amie O’Shaughnessy (Team Leader), Dr. Jennifer Miller (Team Veterinarian), Alice Beatty (Stable Manager), Ozzie Sawicki (Performance Consultant), Caroline Archambault (Human/Equine Massage Therapist), and Julie Cull (Media Attache). Grooms include Anne Van Silfhout, Zoe Boyles, Tori Murray-Elley, and Kerry-Anne Bourne. Personal team support personnel include Caroline Samson, Suzie Brown, and Vanessa Lurie. Off-site support is also provided by Jamie-Ann Goodfellow and Ashley Raaymakers (Equine Canada Para-Equestrian Department) as well as April Clay (Sport Psychologist).
For candid team shots, updates, and stories, be sure to check out the Canadian Paralympic Equestrian Team blog at: http://canadianparalympicequestrianteam.wordpress.com
For more information, including live scoring and results, please visit the equestrian sport section of the official 2012 London Paralympic Games website at www.london2012.com/paralympics/equestrian