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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 March, 2004, 16:03 GMT
Beginner's guide to showjumping
Showjumping event in Sydney
The object is to complete the course with the fewest penalties for errors

There are both individual and team showjumping events at the Olympics.

Competitors attempt a series of 15 to 20 jumps set out in an arena, and the object is to complete the course, regardless of style, with the fewest penalties.

Obstacles include water jumps, triple bars, parallel rails and mock stone walls, and can be on their own or in a series of doubles and triples.

They must be completed in order and knocking down a block or pole incurs a penalty or by refusing at any obstacle.

The penalty list is as follows:

  • Four points for knocking down an obstacle or putting a foot in the water jump.

  • Four points for refusing a jump, eight points if it happens again and elimination for three refusals.

  • Elimination if either horse or rider falls.

  • Elimination should the horse refuse at a jump for longer than 60 seconds

If there is a tie for the lead, the course is changed and a jump-off takes place to decide the winner.

In the jump-off, riders compete against the clock, as well as the course. If the penalty count is the same, the rider with the fastest time wins.

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