As the day progressed and Sonke Rothenberger shot to first place with her two teammates right behind her, the top spot looked more and more likely, especially with their trump card of Isabell Werth (who was last to go) still firmly in hand.
As part of British team reduced to three riders, Spencer Wilton had some serious pressure to deal with. Watching his test, he seemed in with a very good chance of topping the leaderboard but sadly it was not to be.
Supa Nova dropped out of the canter pirouette and struggled to pick them up again, which caused an instant and significant drop in the pair’s scores.
We’d be willing to bet that thoughts of all British spectators were the same – ‘could one unlucky moment have cost us a medal?’ And if you thought Spencer Wilton was under pressure, the very thought of Carl Hester’s ride would have had you quaking in your boots.
With his nation’s hope resting heavily on his shoulders Carl would have been well aware that he would have to score 75-76% for Great Britain to contest the medals.
With Hester’s score of 74.9%, GB were sitting in third place. Patrik Kittel needed only a 71% to overtake team GB. He duly went and blew the 71% out of the water and scored 73.8% guaranteeing Sweden a medal by pushing them into second place with only the Danish left to challenge them – and challenge they did.
Denmark’s final rider Cathrine Dufour was cool, calm and collected and produced a beautiful test which the judges deemed worthy of a 78.3%.