Here at Horse Nation, we are an equal opportunity appreciator of thrills and spills. This week’s edition of “Oh $h!t” is an homage to the finest lawn-dart action of the 2012 Olympic Games.
***Update: The cross-country and show-jumping videos have since been removed from YouTube by request from the IOC. Oh well–it was fun while it lasted!
EVENTING: Cross-country was an exciting day at Greenwich Park! Horses ice-skated around the slippery track and several got tripped up by tricky technical questions. This is some pretty dramatic “Thrills & Spills” coverage, but thank goodness, few horses or riders were seriously injured–Canada’s Hawley Bennett was hospitalized with a concussion and a stable sacral fracture, and Michelle Mueller’s horse Amistad was withdrawn and retired after tearing a tendon. Keep an eye out for our “Velcro Britches Award” winner Andrew Hoy at 1:04.
SHOW JUMPING: Sweden’s Lisen Fredricson bit the dust during the 1st Qualifier of Individual show-jumping competition when her horse, Matrix, landed in the middle of a jump. Approximately five million cameras captured her fall and the amazing photos were widely circulated around the Internet. According to the FEI’s report, “There was a choice of six forward or seven holding strides, but the Swedish rider’s horse found a very long-distance launching pad, and paddled through the poles of the opening triple bar, firing his rider onto the floor.”
DRESSAGE: This isn’t a lawn-dart moment, but it’s definitely an “Oh $h!t” one. Poor David Marcus of Canada was eliminated in the Grand Prix when his horse, Capital, spooked and went off course. “I am not sure if it was the camera in the corner swiveling to see him, or the umbrellas, or the amount of rain he was dealing with. He just got scared, ultimately,” David told Horse Talk NZ. The rider was not able to regain his horse’s attention within the 10 seconds allowed under the rules. Did we mention he was riding in a downpour? Bummer.
It is a time-honored Horse Nation tradition to dedicate an inspirational song to our fallen equestrian soldiers. Olympic lawn darts, this one goes out to you.
Fail or no fail, Olympians, you’ll always be heroes to us.
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