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France wins first Rio Olympics gold in equestrian team eventing

John MacDougal / AFP | France's Astier Nicolas rides Piaf De B'neville.

France won the gold medal in eventing on Tuesday in a dramatic show jumping final, rising two places after the cross country phase when riders from Australia and New Zealand knocked rails down.


Defending champions Germany took silver, climbing from fourth after cross country on Monday and helped by a clear show jumping round from 2012 individual winner Michael Jung.

Australia took third while New Zealand, which was in the running for silver after cross country, fell to fourth after a seven-time Olympian Mark Todd knocked three rails down.

In addition to determining the team medals, the morning jumping round also served as a qualifier for a final round to determine individual medals on Tuesday afternoon, in which French team member Astier Nicolas, riding Piaf de B'Neville, won an individual silver to his team gold.

Cross country is a three-phased sport including dressage, cross country and show jumping. France last won team gold in the sport in Athens in 2004.


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