Saudi Arabia’s equestrian show jumping team on Monday won a bronze medal in the Olympics, while Britain won the gold Netherlands silver.
Saudi Arabia, anchored by a strong showing from Prince Abdullah al Saud, finished with a score of 13 faults, ahead of stalwarts Switzerland and Sweden and defending Olympic team champions the United States.
The Saudi team had led the standings after the first day of Olympic equestrian team show jumping at Greenwich Park in a tightly packed field.
After dropping the weakest score from their total on the first round Sunday, the Saudi team carried just one fault into Monday's second round.
“I cannot describe my feelings I am so happy,” Prince Abdullah al Saud told reporters.
Prince Abdullah is the second royal Olympian to have made an appearance in the Greenwich Park arena. Zara Phillips, granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth and daughter of Princess Anne, was part of the British team that won silver in evening.
Britain, Sweden, the Netherlands and Switzerland were tied with a first-round score of four faults. Faults earned over the two days are added together to determine the team winner.
Canada, who won team Olympic silver in 2008, were close behind at five faults but suffered a serious blow to their prospects when rider Tiffany Foster was disqualified. This left only three members in contention.
Saudi Arabia's success in Olympic team show jumping has been powered by a slightly mysterious organization that started buying top horses over the past two years with the Games in its sights.