Sports Desk, Jul 21 (EFE).- When Michael Jung won the second of his two straight Individual Olympic Equestrian Eventing titles at Rio 2016, the German announced that he had his sights set on “Tokyo 2020…the Europeans and maybe the world title along the way.”
It was not a bold prediction for the 38-year-old who made Eventing history by becoming the first to hold European, Olympic and World Championship titles at the same time to become one of the most formidable athletes in all of equestrian sport.
If he manages to clinch the gold in Tokyo he will further broaden his legend in equestrian sport as no one has managed to prevail in three consecutive Games.
Coming close were Dutchman Charles Pahud de Mortanges, champion in Amsterdam 1928 and in Los Angeles 1932 and New Zealander Mark Todd, who won in Los Angeles 1984 and in Seoul 1988, both riding on the same horse in two triumphs, Marcroix and Carisma, respectively.
Jung also took the top spot in London and Rio de Janeiro with the same horse, the mighty Sam. In Tokyo, he will ride Chipmunk, the horse with which he won gold in the 2019 European team category.
He is joined on the German team by two of the three athletes who helped clinch team silver in Rio, Sandra Auffarth (Viamant du Matz) and Julia Krajewski (Armande de B’Neville). However it is the French who line out as defending team champions, with Thomas Carlile (Birmane), Nicolas Touzaint (Absolut Gold HDC) and Christopher Six (Totem de Brecey) flying the flag for Les Bleus.
The British arrive as reigning world champions and with the world number one, Oliver Townend (Ballaghmore Class), number five Tom McEwen (Toledo de Kerser) and number 22, Laura Collet (London 52) in their side, backed up by last-minute replacement reserve Ros Canter with Allstar B, the horse she rode to individual gold at the FEI World Equestrian Games 2018.