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At the Olympics with Steffen Peters and Team USA: Grand Prix Dressage

Jan Ebeling and his now-famous Oldenburg mare Rafalca, co-owned by Ann Romney, may have drawn the most press attention over the past few days, but it was Steffen Peters and Ravel who were the ones to watch. Peters sits in 7th place headed into tomorrow’s Grand Prix Freestyle, which will determine the individual Olympic Dressage medals.

Steffen feeds SUCCEED to Ravel, whose overall calmness throughout his Olympic bid indicates that he’s focused and ready as a serious competitor in the final Freestyle.

Olympic Grand Prix Dressage: Results

Steffen Peters and Ravel led the U.S. team with a solid sixth-place finish and a score of 77.705 in round 1 of competition of the Dressage Grand Prix. Teammate Tina Konyot took 25th with a score of 70.456, and Jan Ebeling aboard the celebrated Rafalca took 30th place with a score of 70.243. Adrienne Lyle was 35th with a score of 69.468, but competes as an individual only, which means that her score did not influence the overall team ranking. She also didn’t quite make the top 11 in the individual, so her Olympic bid ended here.

Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin topped the standings after both days of competition with a stunning score of 83.663. Adelinde Cornelissen of the Netherlands came second, with a score of 81.687, and Helen Langehanenberg from Germany took third place, with a score of 81.140.

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Only the top seven teams and the top 11 individuals moved on to the Grand Prix Special on August 7, which determined the team medals.

Olympic Dressage Grand Prix Special Results

With cheers and whistles from the home crowd, Team GB took gold in team dressage yesterday, wresting the top honor from Germany. This is Great Britain’s first-ever dressage medal, and marks the end of a decades-long gold-medal streak for Germany, who has taken the top honor in every Olympics since 1976 — with the exception of the boycott year in 1980. Congratulations for the home team were in order following the Grand Prix Special, even as Team USA missed out on the podium and took sixth place overall.

Steffen Peters was again the American to watch, as he and Ravel tied for seventh place individually with a score of 76.254 percent. Tina Konyot came 25th on Calecto V, and Jan Ebeling took 28th on the storied Rafalca. Of the three Americans, only Steffen will continue to the individual final, decided by the results of the Grand Prix Freestyle on Thursday.

Steffen Peters Olympic Update:

The four-time Olympian said he was extremely pleased with last week’s ride in the Grand Prix, saying, “It certainly was the test of a lifetime at the Olympic Games. I can’t describe the feeling you get from Ravel when he’s on, but today was one of those days,” in an interview with the Chronicle of the Horse. “I’m just so excited about how much energy Ravel has. He’s still just as supple as he was the very first time we did a Grand Prix,” Peters continued, praising Ravel’s extensions, collections, and two near-perfect canter pirouettes.

“Even though he had so much energy, he walked extremely relaxed,” Peters said. “Usually the tricky part is the collected walk. He can get a bit nervous, but even there he was very relaxed.”

Ravel’s floppy ears throughout both tests represented his willingness to perform and overall calm in the Olympic ring, indicating that the pair is perfectly poised to come out strong for Thursday’s final competition for individual gold.

Up Next: Grand Prix Freestyle

Tune in on Thursday for the Grand Prix Freestyle used to determine the individual winners of dressage. Typically the most popular of the three dressage tests, freestyle is a combination of the moves seen in the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special, but is set to the music of the rider’s choosing and subject to his or her artistic vision for the test.

 Follow along with the SUCCEED blog as we continue to watch Steffen and Ravel compete for individual gold.

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