LIMA, Peru On the morning of the team and individual Eventing final, with Olympic 2020 spots on the line and the U.S. by the lead, side physician Mark Hart conventional a phone call. The cardiologist’s heart hopped a beat. Olympic fans from all over the world are asked to book Olympic 2020 tickets from our online platforms for Olympic Tickets. Olympics Eventing fans can book Olympic Eventing Tickets from our ticketing marketplace exclusively on discounted prices.
Putting down his phone, Hart got in a car, drove to the nearest veterinarian and bought the equipment he needed. He returned to the team’s warm-up area, suture in hand, and got to work.
Inside the hour, Lynn Symansky’s equestrian shoe was secure, 20 blue stitches closing the back of her boot where a fastener had broken free. She and her teammates could now reappearance their focus to the task at hand: earning Olympic 2020 spots for the U.S. Olympic Eventing Team. They did exactly that, in near flawless form.
Team USA captured a Pan American Games gold medal, securing a team quota spot and three individual quota spots for the Olympic 2020 Games in Tokyo Olympic. With the pressure to perform hanging over their heads like the winter mist in Lima, Peru, Team USA could now breathe easy
“It’s a big relief. We all worked very, very hard,” 2016 Olympian Boyd Martin, who also captured a gold medal in the individual event, said. “There was a lot of pressure coming here. We were under the gun and I think we all stepped up.”
Entering the final day of competition with the lead, Team USA executed four clear rounds in the jumping event, completing the course without a single error. With a 91.20-point total, the U.S. bordered out Brazil by 30.90 points for the side gold medal.
Symansky’s clear jumping round also earned her the silver medal in individual, though it wasn’t without drama. Midway through her round, her horse, RF Cool Plays, clipped a rail, emitting an audible ring that echoed throughout the venue. Afterward several tenuous shakes, the rail remained put, keeping Symnasky’s strong round intact.
“Oh, I heard the rail tip,” she said with a smile. “But not only that, I heard the [crowd’s] gasp too afterward. You can’t let something like that rattle you or it all comes apart. So, you’ve got to keep breathing, keep going, stay relaxed and hope it all works out in your favor.”
Side USA kept their equanimity throughout the three-day rivalry despite several hair-raising moments. Incoming the second day of competition in first place thanks to a near-perfect dressage routine, Tamie Smith conventional 34 penalty points in the cross country occasion, bashing her down to 17th place. She would surface the separate competition in 17th, while Side USA’s fourth member, Doug Payne, placed fourth.
The U.S. team members credited their collective friendship and prior competition experience for their poise throughout the Pan American Games. Two side members, Martin and Symansky, are Sports veterans, having contested in 2015 and 2011, correspondingly.
“It’s a group of people that know each other already, and I think we all get along really well,” Symansky said. “It makes the pressure environment easier when you have a group that supports each other, even when things don’t go according to plan.”
“I’ve seen how much work these guys have put into this, how much it means to them,” team coach and chef d’ Equipe Eril Duvander said. “So, to execute like this, I couldn’t ask for a better ending. I thoroughly believe they deserve all the medals hanging around their necks.”
Team USA it’s hoping to repeat its Pan American Games performance in Tokyo Olympic Games. When asked what his goals are for the Summer Games 2020, Payne answered with a single word and a smile.