2012 SUMMER OLYMPICS --- DAY 4 ROUNDUP: Queen Elizabeth II’s granddaughter leads Brits to silver medal in equestrian event

Members of the British equestrian eventing team, from left, Nicola Wilson, Zara Phillips, William Fox-Pitt, Mary King, and Kristina Cook pose with their silver medals they won in the team equestrian competition at the 2012 Summer Olympics on Tuesday.

Members of the British equestrian eventing team, from left, Nicola Wilson, Zara Phillips, William Fox-Pitt, Mary King, and Kristina Cook pose with their silver medals they won in the team equestrian competition at the 2012 Summer Olympics on Tuesday.

LONDON — Four things to know about Tuesday, Day 4 of the London Olympics:

—The queen's granddaughter wins silver in equestrian eventing.

—Female Saudi judoka cleared to fight.

—IOC, FINA defend China’s teen swimmer.

—Royal prize: Zara adds to family silver with Olympic medal.

The queen’s granddaughter Zara Phillips added to the family silver Tuesday, helping team Britain to a second-place finish behind Germany in Olympic equestrian eventing. Putting shine on the moment: Her mother, Princess Anne, presented the medal.

It was a very royal family affair at Greenwich Park, London’s oldest royal park and the home of equestrian events for the 2012 Olympics. Princes William and Harry and William’s wife, Kate, were in the stands to cheer on their cousin as she competed in the final show jumping portion of the three-stage eventing competition, coming out for a second day in a row to support “Team GB.”

Phillips said the experience was “amazing” and “unreal” — if not a bit disappointing given that Britain went into the final hoping to win. But Phillips and teammate Nicola Wilson both knocked down fences, and the penalties added onto others accumulated by the team over the dressage and cross-country segments, dashing Britain’s hopes for gold.

The royal family has been at the heart of the Olympics, with her grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, also playing a starring role in the opening ceremony in a James Bond sketch with actor Daniel Craig.

What, though, did the queen say by way of congratulations?

“I’m not going to tell you that,” Phillips smiled.

In other action Tuesday:

A female judo fighter from Saudi Arabia was cleared to wear a form of headscarf in the Olympics after a compromise was reached that respects the “cultural sensitivity” of the Muslim kingdom.

Judo officials had said they would not let Wojdan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shahrkhani compete in a headscarf because it was against the principles of the sport and raised safety concerns. But an agreement was reached after several days of IOC-brokered talks between the International Judo Federation and the Saudi Olympic Committee, allowing her to compete Friday in the heavyweight division.

“They have a solution that works for both parties, all parties involved,” International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams said. “The athlete will compete.”

Saudi Arabia, which had never sent female athletes to the Olympics before, brought its two first female Olympians to London on condition they adhere to the kingdom’s Islamic traditions, including wearing a headscarf.

Shahrkhani’s participation was thrown into doubt last week when judo officials said a headscarf could be dangerous because of chokeholds and aggressive grabbing techniques.

Without giving precise details, Adams said the headscarf agreement is in line with Asian judo rules and is “safety compliant but allows for cultural sensitivity.”

Olympic officials defended Chinese teen swimmer Ye Shiwen against whispers of doping after she won the 400-meter individual medley Saturday in world-record time — and she made her own statement by winning another gold medal in the 200 IM Tuesday night.

The 16-year-old clocked 2:07.57 to shave 0.18 off her own mark set in Monday’s semifinal — good enough for an Olympic record and her second gold medal in London.

Ye had closed the 400 with a lap of 28.93 seconds — faster than the 29.10 American winner Ryan Lochte posted in the last 50 of the men’s race. Ye’s time was 4:28.43, more than a second faster than the previous world record set by Australia’s Stephanie Rice at the 2008 Beijing Games in a now-banned bodysuit.

John Leonard, head of the American Swimming Coaches Association but not a member of the U.S. Olympic staff, was among those openly questioning Ye’s legitimacy. The Guardian newspaper quoted him as saying the last 100 of her 400 IM race “was reminiscent of some old East German swimmers.”

“We need to get real here,” the IOC’s Adams said. “These are the world’s best athletes competing at the very highest level. We’ve seen all sorts of records broken already all over the place.”

Asked about Leonard’s comments, FINA president Julio Maglione told The Associated Press people are free to say “stupid things” if they want.

“It’s a big mistake,” Maglione said of Ye’s doubters. “The people that said this is crazy.”

He said FINA spends $1 million to drug-test the top 30 swimmers in the world two or three times a year and “swimming is absolutely clean.”

Zara Phillips gave the royal family plenty to cheer about, helping team Britain to a second-place finish behind Germany. Princes William and Harry and William’s wife, Kate, were in the stands to watch their cousin as she competed in the show jumping final portion of Olympic equestrian eventing.

Phillips’ mother, Princess Anne, watched as well — then presented her daughter and the rest of the winners with their medals at the ceremony before horses and riders took a thunderous group victory lap around the Greenwich Park stadium.

The rest of the Olympic action Tuesday:


Ben Ainslie is still chasing Denmark’s Jonas Hoegh-Christensen in the Finn class.

Hoegh-Christensen finished first and second in a pair of races for a 10-point lead over Ainslie after six races. Britain’s Ainslie had finishes of 4-3 as the 24-boat fleet sailed in winds that reached 17 knots.

Ainslie is trying to win his fourth straight gold medal and fifth games medal overall. If he wins gold, he’ll supplant Hoegh-Christensen’s countryman, Paul Elvstrom, as the greatest sailor in Olympic history.

Ireland’s Annalise Murphy continued her surreal run in the Laser Radial, winning her fourth straight race.


Chen Ruolin and Wang Hao led China to its third diving gold in London, this one off the big tower in women’s 10-meter synchronized diving. China won going away with 368.40 points, and the country is nearly halfway to its goal of sweeping the eight diving events.

Mexico’s Paola Espinosa and 15-year-old Alejandra Orozco took the silver, and Meaghan Benfeito and Roseline Filion won the bronze for Canada.


Tony Estanguet of France won the gold medal in the men’s canoe slalom. Sideris Tasiadis of Germany got the silver, and defending champion Michal Martikan of Slovakia was third. … Second-seeded Kim Bubmin of South Korea survived a scare from Fiji’s Robert Elder to remain alive in the men’s individual archery competition. … Maiya Maneza won Kazakhstan’s second weightlifting gold in London and set an Olympic record in the women’s 63-kilogram category. … Slovenia’s Urska Zolnir (women’s 63kg) and South Korea’s Kim Jae-bum (men’s 81kg) each nabbed weightlifting golds.