German Equestrian Team Dominates Team and Individual Events
Star rider Michael Jung celebrates birthday with two golds
(© picture alliance / dpa)
The German equestrian team has followed up its victory in Beijing with another gold in the Team Eventing discipline, thereby snagging the first German gold medal so far in these Olympic games. Ingrid Klimke, Sandra Auffarth, Michael Jung, Dirk Schrade and Peter Thomsen accomplished the feat after an excellent showing in the jumping competition. The United Kingdom was in second place and was awarded the silver, while New Zealand took bronze.
World and European champion Michael Jung, who celebrated his 30th birthday on Tuesday, rode “Sam” through a faultless passage on the course, as the consistently strong German team clinched its spot atop the scoreboard. "The strategy was to ride cleanly with no mistakes. Sam just jumped extremely well," said Jung, praising his horse.
The competition was stiff, with the home crowd including Prince William, Duchess Catherine and Princess Anne, mother of competitor Zara Phillips, who were present to cheer on the home team.
National coach Hans Melzer praised Michael Jung’s accomplishment: "We know how safe Michi is, but we did not tell him beforehand that if he rides a zero, we would win."
Jung stood in fourth place going into the afternoon’s individual jumping competition. Jung and Sam performed brilliantly to win the individual gold, making it quite a birthday for the 30-year-old rider from the western state of Hesse.
Behind Jung came Swede Sara Algotsson-Ostholt, riding Vega. The bronze went to Jung’s teammate Sandra Auffarth, riding Opgun Louvo, who had also been part of the gold-medal-winning team earlier in the day.
Enlarge image Sideris Tasiadis of Germany won silver in the canoe slalom. (© picture alliance / dpa) German slalom canoer Sideris Tasiadis continued an excellent year in which he also triumphed in the European Championships. He won the silver in the men’s Olympic canoe slalom event, as his performance was only bested by Frenchman Tony Estanguet, who won gold for the third time in his career.