SPORTS

Canada in contention for team equestrian medal

08/05/2012 11:28 EDT | Updated 10/05/2012 05:12 EDT
Solid rides by Eric Lamaze, Ian Millar and Jill Henselwood have left Canada sixth overall and in strong medal contention after a controversial first day of the team equestrian at the London Games.

Tiffany Foster, of Schomberg, Ont., the team’s fourth member, was disqualified on Sunday morning when officials decided her mount, Victor, was showing hypersensitivity in the front limb.

Foster’s horse was found to have inflammation stemming from a scratch shortly before the individual and team jumping events began. Canada is appealing the decision, but it cannot be heard until after the event.

The decision meant the Canadian team had to count all three of its remaining riders and could not drop off the lowest score, the same situation faced in 2008 at Beijing when Mac Cone's horse was injured. Canada still came up with an Olympic silver.

On Sunday, Millar, from Perth, Ont., took his 11-year-old gelding Star Power cleanly through the course.

Lamaze, of Schomberg, on his mare Derly Chin De Muze, had one time penalty and Henselwood, of Oxford Mills, Ont., on her gelding George, had four faults.

At the same time, Lamaze (13th, one point behind a 12-way tie for first) and Millar (17th) qualified for the next round of the individual competition.

Saudi Arabia is a surprise first day leader in the team event with just 1 point from a time fault, while Great Britain, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Sweden are tied with 4. Canada is a point back with 5, and Mexico is at 10.

The powerful Germans had a shocking day, finishing in a tie for tenth and missing the team finals.

Third round of team and individual goes on Monday. Team medals come from the sum of the two days.

After Monday, the top 35 individuals go through to the next round, 20 to the final round.

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