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EQUESTRIAN: London hopes dashed for Laura
12:39pm Wednesday 30th May 2012 in Sport
LAURA Collett has conceded that her chances of making the London 2012 Olympic Games are over after she was eliminated at Saumur last week, writes SAM MORSHEAD.
Collett, who is based at the Membury Estate near Marlborough, had an outside chance of making the Team GB eventing squad having represented Great Britain at the European Championships last year.
But her form on board star gelding Rayef, with whom she claimed eighth place at her first and only Badminton Horse Trials in 2011, has dipped of late and a stop and fall on the 25th fence of the cross-country at Saumur effectively killed off her hopes of a call-up so early on in what is already a remarkable career.
Collett accepted that she will now have to be looking to Rio in 2016 for her first taste of Olympic action.
She said on her website: “Saumur did not have the best ending for Henry (Rayef) and I. He was going really well on the cross-country until fence 25 when we had a stop.
“It was so frustrating but I tried to put it behind me and approached again, sadly we had a fall and were eliminated.
“We are both fine and will live to fight another day but our Olympic hopes are over and plan Z is now in operation.”
While the ultimate dream may remain exactly that, Collett continues to enhance her status as the up-and-coming rider in this country.
Already the youngest ever winner of a CCI** event, a full international and prolific domestically, the future is bright for the 22-year-old.
And she made up for the disappointment of Saumur with convincing performances at Tweseldown and Pontispool last week.
“Noble Bestman restored the humour by winning the OI (at Tweseldown) and the novice horses finishing second (Obos Cooley), third (Longbarn Maisie) and sixth (Brookfield Cult King) (was good too),” she said.
“The weekend saw us head to Pontispool – Maisie was again and star and jumped a double clear and finished seventh.
“I did not run the rest cross country. The ground was firming up every minute and, as they are only young, there will be plenty more chances ahead.”
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