American Beezie Madden Captures Bronze in Individual Show Jumping

Beezie Madden and Authentic at the 2008 Olympic Games

American Beezie Madden and Authentic took home more medals than any other American equestrian during these Olympic Games.

Twenty-two horse and rider combinations were jumping for the prestige of Individual Olympic medals on Aug. 21, and there was no shortage of excitement for Canada, Sweden and the United States. After a flawless round that included zero faults, Canada’s Eric Lamaze aboard Hickstead landed on top with Individual gold; Sweden’s Rolf-Goran Bengtsson riding Ninja took silver; and American Beezie Madden riding the invincible Authentic grabbed bronze. This is Madden’s second medal during these Games; earlier in the week she was part of the American contingency that claimed gold in Team show jumping.

American McLain Ward just missed the medals’ podium in Individual competition, falling into sixth position, but turned in a brilliant performance aboard Sapphire. After a jump-off for Individual bronze, Ward fell in line behind fifth-place finisher Rodrigo Pessoa of Brazil aboard Rufus; fourth place went to Germany’s Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum riding the legendary Shutterfly.

The two other American show jumpers, Will Simpson and Laura Kraut, did not qualify for the final Individual competition.

The thrill of Individual show jumping competition was shrouded in some disappointment when it was announced that the medals’ order for Team show jumping may be “redistributed” after a drug test revealed that four horses tested positive for the banned substance capsaicin. One of those horses, Camiro ridden by Norway’s Tony Andre Hansen, was part of the Team bronze medal winners for show jumping. If there is a medals redistribution, the bronze would go to the fourth place team, Switzerland.

In addition to Camiro, three other show jumping horses tested positive for capsaicin: Ireland’s Lantinus, ridden by Dennis Lynch; Brazil’s Chupa Chup, ridden by Bernardo Alves; and Germany’s Coster, ridden by Christian Ahlmann. All four horse-and-rider combinations were eliminated from the Individual show jumping competition as a result of the drug test findings.

Capsaicin is a derivative of chili peppers typically used topically to relieve aches and pains. It is unknown at this time how the banned substance was administered to the four horses. A second blood sample from each horse is being tested and results should be known shortly, according to Alexander McLin, secretary general for the Federation Equestre International, the international governing body for equestrian sport.



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