A week after it was announced Australia's highest ranked showjumper was not named in the starting team for the Tokyo Olympics, Rowan Willis has withdrawn from his place as a reserve rider.
Willis, who was ranked 59th in the world when the Australian team was named, was listed as the team's reserve rider behind Edwina Tops-Alexander (311), Katie Laurie (469) and Jamie Kermond (1150).
The reserve combination has no guaranteed start at the Olympics and Willis made the decision to withdraw as the reserve athlete.
The welfare of his prized mare, Blue Movie, was at the forefront of his decision.
"It is with great sadness, that I have come to the tough decision to withdraw as reserve athlete from Australian Olympic Showjumping Team," he said in a post on Facebook.
"I have weighed up the options very carefully and consider it in the best interest of my horse Carrots [Blue Movie] not to undertake such a demanding global travel schedule when the EA (Equestrian Australia) have made it clear there is no tactical plan to start her."
"Carrots and I thank you for your continued support and we now turn our sights to a busy competition schedule to complete the year. We endeavor to continue showing the world what a special horse she is.
"We wish the Australian team the best of luck and success in Tokyo and, along with the rest of Australia we will be cheering them on!"
The Australian team will now travel without a reserve.
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