|LONDON, UK — A perfect "must-do" round by Rich Fellers on his longtime partner, Flexible, boosted the U.S. show jumping team's Olympic fortunes, putting the squad into tomorrow's second round that will decide the medals.|
A technical course utilizing rider options—several notches tougher than Saturday's route for the First Individual Qualifier—shattered the chances of several highly regarded teams, including Germany, France and Belgium.
Only eight of the 15 nations that started will return tomorrow for the final test before the medalists ascend the podium at Greenwich Park.
Saudi Arabia leads on 1 penalty, followed by a tie for second among Great Britain, the Netherlands, Sweden and Switzerland, all of which have 4 penalties. Sixth with 5 penalties is Canada, which has only three riders since Tiffany Foster's horse, Victor, was found to be hypersensitive and was eliminated.
The United States has a total of 8 penalties, to tie for seventh with Brazil.
"As a team, I wish we were in a little better position, but we're all fighters and we can come from behind," said Fellers.