LONDON, England — Equestrian Samantha Albert will be Jamaica's first athlete in action in the 2012 Olympic Games when she starts the three-day Individual Eventing competition in equestrian at Greenwich Park at midday UK time (6:00 am Jamaica time) today.
Albert, the first of Jamaica's 50 athletes chasing medals, will be followed by swimmer Alia Atkinson, who is set to get into action tomorrow.
The 41-year-old Canada-born Albert will be riding the 12-year-old horse Carraig Dubh and will be contesting her second Olympics after participating in Beijing four years ago.
She qualified on Carraig Dubh at a competition in Ballindenisk, Ireland, in February this year.
The three-day competition involves rider and horse and consists of a dressage test, a cross-country test, and two jumping tests. After the first jumping test, the best 25 riders (as well as any who are tied in 25th place) go through to the second jumping test.
Scores are cumulative across all three phases, with the best total determining the winner.
Equestrian events are the only events where male and female will compete against each other.
Albert started riding in events at age 13 in 1984 before representing Jamaica for the first time at the Pan-American Games in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1991.
She could have represented any of four countries, including Canada, England where her father is from, Sweden where her husband is from and Jamaica where her mother is from and where she moved to as a youngster.