Articles: Press Release
On Top Down Under: Taylor Land Wins 2009 Sydney
Youth Olympic Festival Individual Gold Medal in Show Jumping
Photo credit: USEF/Jennifer Haydon.
United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
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Web site: www.usef.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 19, 2009
By Joanie Morris
Lexington, KY - To go halfway around the world and win is a monumental
achievement - especially on a borrowed horse.
No one told show jumper Taylor Land.
The 16-year-old from Atlanta, GA peaked at the perfect time and came
home with the Individual Gold medal at the 2009 Australian Youth Olympic
Taylor Land was part of the team that was fourth in the Nations Cup on
Sunday and rode Tom McDermott's Markovitch to win Gold.
"I couldn't have won this with out the support of my team and (Chef
d'Equipe) Dick Carvin, and coach Francie Steinwedell-Carvin," said Land.
"This was an amazing experience and this medal is for the whole team."
Land jumped off for the Gold medal with Rachel McGregor (who rode Rachel
Higgins' horse Dusty Rhodes) from New Zealand and showed her composure
on the world stage. Both riders had four faults in the jump-off but Land
was the quickest.
24 horse/rider combinations started the individual final and 13 came
back for the second round. Land's teammate, Kylie Wright, had four
faults from the first round and jumped clear in the second. Wright
returned to jump-off for the Bronze along with four other riders.
Matthew Sampson of Great Britain riding Ben Blay's Sir Joindre won the
The team of four: Land, Wright, Mavis Spencer and Jennifer Waxman put up
a brave fight but ended up out of the team medals on Saturday behind New
Zealand, who won Gold with 12 total faults and Australia who won silver
with 16 faults.
In the first round, Wright and Land jumped clear, Waxman had four down
and Spencer added nine faults.
They returned to the ring for the second round and Waxman got the most
out of her horse, Shekky Express, she recovered from her disappointing
first round to jump clear.
"I don't care if I have to pick this horse up, put him on my shoulders
and carry him over these jumps, we will go clear," she said.
Waxman made true on her promise.
Wright added eight faults, and Spencer had one down. Land's second round
was the drop score of 16.
Great Britain and the US were tied for bronze after the two rounds of
the Nation Cup so Wright rode in a jump off against Britain's Mathew
Sampson. She rode a faster round but had one down, Sampson jumped clear
and secured Bronze for the Brits.
"We all owe a huge thank you to the Australian Olympic Committee for the
invitation and for such a huge undertaking," said USEF Director of Show
Jumping, National Programs Jennifer Haydon. "Also with out the horse
owner's generosity of their time and horses, this would not be
For more information please see http://www.olympics.com.au
Attached is a photo of Taylor Land, please credit USEF/Jennifer Haydon.
For a hi resolution photo please contact Joanie Morris at
The vision of the United States Equestrian Federation(r) is to provide
for equestrian sport in the United States of America by promoting the
of excellence from the grassroots to the Olympic Games, based on a
foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare
of its human and equine athletes.