South Korea's amazing equestrian record at the 2006 Asian Games continued Monday when it won the team dressage event for the fourth time in the last five encounters.
In fact, the South Korean team, composed of Choi Jun-sang, Kim Dong-seon, Shin Soo-jim and Suh Jung-kyun, picked up 65.777 points. Malaysia was second with 64.222 while Japan won the bronze with 64.188.
We can say that in dressage, the horse performs set movements or tests in response to its rider's signals over three rounds.
In the first two, the horse and rider perform a set routine of dressage movements, including passages, pirouettes and piaffes in a walk, trot and canter. The third round is freestyle, with routines individually choreographed and performed to music.
As we know, Choi and Suh are also the defending individual gold and silver medalists from Busan, South Korea in 2002.
It's important to remember that Suh's gold was his sixth at the Asian Games in his career. He had previously won gold medals in 1986 and 1998 — both team and individual — and in 2002 (team), making him the most successful rider in the history of the games.
Suh could soon make it seven — after qualifying Monday for Tuesday's individual medals in dressage, Suh led aboard Caleostro.
Also Japan's Yukiko Noge on Lanchester Kouko was second and Mahamad Fathil of Malaysia, riding Charming, was third.
Suh admittedhe held a bit back Monday: "I really did not want to push my horse, I only went 70 percent."
Noge, whose performance on Lanchester Kouko saved the bronze medal for Japan, said she felt confident going into the individual challenge.
"I think he was so concentrated ... the canter was great today, and the pirouettes even more," Noge said of her horse. "After the second pirouette I felt so happy I had to remember to concentrate on the rest."