Well this is just ridiculous.
With Ireland needing to finish in the top three non-qualified European countries at the FEI European Championships in Aachen, Germany today, a completely bizarre moment occurred that gave Ireland's Cian O'Connor a penalty deduction that ultimately cost us a spot at Rio 2016.
As O'Connor was approaching a fence riding his mount 'Good Luck', an arena steward inexplicably ran out in front of the horse, causing him to hit the next fence which resulted in a point deduction. Ireland were beaten to the Olympic spot by Spain and an agonising 0.380 penalty points, a direct result of the crazy incident.
Cian O'Connor was absolutely furious, as were the rest of his Ireland teammates.
— Team IRL Equestrian (@TeamIRLEq) August 21, 2015
That's heart-breaking, and while it may be the first time we have become absolutely outraged at a live showjumping incident, it's certainly worth being upset about considering what was at stake.
It will be very harsh if Ireland miss out by less than half a penalty point on Olympic qualification #showjumping
— Clare Balding (@clarebalding) August 21, 2015
Very harsh indeed Clare!
John Delaney is rumoured to be asking the Olympic Committee to extend the competition places to accommodate Ireland. We'll bring you more on this as we get it.