Helen Kearney begins medals bid

  • 9 September 2016, 13:37

Team Ireland Equestrian will be represented at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games by Helen Kearney, with competition kicking off at the Brazilian venue this weekend. The County Wicklow native rides the Kearney family’s Hanoverian stallion, Rock And Roll 2 in the Grade 1a section at Rio.


Helen’s first test takes place on Monday (12th September) starting at 13:00 local time (17.00 GMT). This is compulsory for all and this result plus the result for the Individual test is averaged to give a result which hopefully qualifies Helen for the Freestyle on Friday 16th September. No medals on offer for this.


The Individual Championship Test takes place on Thursday 15th September starting at 12:45 local time (16.45 GMT). This is a medallist competition.


On Friday (16th September), the Freestyle Championship takes place at 14.10 local time (18.10 GMT). The top 33% of riders after Monday and Thursday’s classes are eligible to compete in the Freestyle with a further individual medal on offer.


On her Paralympic debut at London 2012, Helen achieved silver and bronze medals in her individual events, and was part of the Irish team which took home the bronze medal. 78 equestrian athletes from 29 different countries will compete at Rio.


As with Olympic dressage, horse and rider are judged on movements carried out in the arena during a dressage ‘test’. The type of test dictates proscribed movements the combination must carry out. Scores are awarded out of 10 for each proscribed movement. Scores are converted to percentages and the highest percentage score wins.


Para dressage became part of the Paralympic Games in 1996. Athletes are divided into five categories (I to V), (I thinks is 1, 1a, 2,3 and 4) determine the complexity of movements that they and their horse perform. Helen competes at Grade Ia level.


RTÉ Sport today announced details of its Paralympics 2016 coverage across television, radio and online. Full details are available by clicking on the following link – http://www.rte.ie/sport/olympics/2016/0907/814805-rte-sport-paralympics-coverage/. Horse Sport Ireland will provide a comprehensive results service from Rio, via the Team Ireland Equestrian Facebook page and on Twitter (TeamIRLEq).



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