IRISH Show Jumping manager Rodrigo Pessoa has named an unchanged team for Sunday's Olympic qualification showdown in Barcelona where Ireland will bid to secure a team place at the Olympic Games for the first time since Athens in 2004.
Having safely negotiated the first hurdle in Barcelona – Thursday’s opening qualifying round of the Longines FEI Nations Cup where Ireland finished fifth of the 18 teams to make it through to Sunday’s final – Ireland will now hope to finish the job on Sunday at the Spanish City which has witnessed many memorable sporting occasions over the years.
Ireland, sponsored by Devenish and The Underwriting Exchange, will be fourth to jump in the Nations Cup Final and line out as follows:
* Waterford’s Peter Moloney with Chianti’s Champion – owned by Team Harmony
* Limerick’s Paul O’Shea with Skara Glen’s Machu Picchu – owned by Machu Picchu Partners LLC
* Offaly’s Darragh Kenny with Balou du Reventon – owned by Ann Thompson
* Meath’s Cian O’Connor with PSG Final – owned by Ronnoco Jump Ltd
Sunday’s Longines FEI Nations Cup Grand Final offers €1.25 million in prize money along with the coveted Olympic qualifying place and along with Ireland, the list of teams hoping to be crowned 2019 Nations Cup champions includes France, Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany Italy and Colombia.
In order to secure Olympic qualification, Ireland will have to finish ahead of the Italians and the Colombians in a competition where all teams will start the day on a zero score.
Speaking ahead of the final, Rodrigo Pessoa said: “After three years of of a campaign [to achieve Olympic qualification] it all comes down to tomorrow. We expected Italy to make the final but Colombia also performed very well and we now know that we have to beat those two teams to reach the Olympics. We are up for the challenge and ready to go for it.”
The Longines FEI Nations Cup World Final starts at 2pm Irish time and will be shown live only on FEITV. Live updates will be provided on Team Ireland Equestrian Facebook and Twitter.
The Irish Show Jumping team is sponsored by Devenish & The Underwriting Exchange
Equiline – Official athlete clothing supplier of Team Ireland Equestrian
Source: Horse Sport Ireland press release