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Germans dominate equestrian competitions
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The Germans have finished top of medal table with three gold medals, one silver and one bronze in the 11-day Beijing Olympic Games Equestrian competitions which closed Thursday night at the Shatin Equestrian Venue.

-- Team Eventing Gold: Germany

Germany won the first Olympic Eventing Team gold medal on 166.10 penalty points with Australia came second on 171.20 points while Britain secured third place on 185.70 points.

Sweden placed fourth on 230.50 points while New Zealand ranked fifth on 240.90 points. Three-day eventing combines the dressage, cross-country and jumps.

-- Individual Eventing Gold: Germany

German rider Hinrich Romeike won the Olympic individual eventing gold medal in the three-day eventing Tuesday night.

Romeike finished on 54.20 penalty points ahead of U.S. rider Gina Miles on 56.10 points. Kristina Cook of Great Britain secured third place on 57.40 points.

-- Team Dressage Gold: Germany

Germany added a third gold medal to their stunning sweep of the Olympic Games equestrian events here Thursday, winning the team dressage competition.

The victory consolidated German dominance of the sport. The team scored 72.916 percent. The Netherlands won the silver medal with 71.750 percent while Denmark took the bronze with 68.875 percent.

"We are so happy, the whole team were very excited to show a good competition," Werth told reporters after scoring 76.417 percent in her test.

"A lot of people didn't believe in the German team after we lost the team gold in last year's European championships.

"The whole team were really helping each other and we have tried to get the best for everybody that was the key to our success," she said.

-- Team Jumping Gold: the United States

Defending gold medallist the United States won the Olympic Equestrian Jumping Team gold medal, holding off a strong challenge from Canada in the team final competition.

Norway came third on 27 penalty points and claimed the bronze medal.

-- Individual Dressage Gold: the Netherlands

Netherlands's Anky van Grunsven won the Olympic Dressage Individual gold metal. She became the sixth woman in Olympic history to win three successive gold medals in an individual event when she won the Dressage Individual event in the Equestrian competition at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

Grunsven, riding her horse Salinero, finished on 78.680 points ahead of the Germany's Isabell Werth with Satchmo on 76.650. Heike Kemmer of Germany aboard Bonaparte secured third place on 74.455 points.

-- Individual Jumping Gold: Canada

Eric Lamaze of Canada, riding HICKSTEAD, won the Individual Jumping gold metal, holding off a strong challenge from Rolf-Goran Bengtsson of Sweden and his horse NINJA in the last Equestrian event of the Beijing Olympic Games Thursday night.

In the final Round B, Eric Lamaze and Rolf-Goran Bengtsson were tied for first place on zero penalties. They were forced into a jump-off to decide the winner of the Individual Jumping.

Eric Lamaze finished on zero penalties while Rolf-Goran Bengtsson ended on 4 penalties in the jump-off showdown.

Beezie Madden of the United States, riding AUTHENTIC, came third and claimed the bronze medal.

For the first time, China has fielded six riders for the 11-day competitions in the Olympic Equestrian events that kicked off in Hong Kong on August 9.

But unfortunately, they were all edged out after a poor showing.Among them, Hua Tian, an 18-year-old boy from Guangdong, has received the most media attention. Hua, who saddled with hopes of the host nation at Beijing Olympic Games, fell from his horse while trying to clear hurdles during the cross-country phase of the Olympic eventing.

Liu Lina, the first Chinese rider to compete in Dressage at the Olympic Games. In the Grand Prix test, she scored 60.625 percent and disqualified to move to the second Individual Qualifier.

Patrick Lam, rider from team Hong Kong, China, has delivered a strong show earlier. He had a clear round on the opening night of qualifiers to be tied with some of the world's best. However, he was stopped in the third-round show jumping individual competition.

(Xinhua News Agency August 22, 2008)

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