CAEN, France (AP) Patrice Delaveau of France met the expectations of family and friends in attendance with two clear rounds to make the show jumping final four at the World Equestrian Games on Saturday.
Delaveau topped Beezie Madden of the U.S. by 0.08 points, Rolf-Goran Bengtsson of Sweden by 0.26, and Jeroen Dubbeldam of the Netherlands by 2.17 points.
Delaveau and Dubbeldam both jumped two clear rounds at Stade d'Ornano, while Madden and Bengtsson could afford to knock down a fence. Bengtsson and Madden, who finished second and third respectively at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, had enough maneuvering room as they started the day with less than a penalty point.
''For me, this has been a difficult day,'' Delaveau said. ''Everyone was expecting this. I live 40 kilometers away from here and I know everyone, and all everyone has talked about every day was this competition. So the pressure has been huge for me, and to jump the last fence was a real relief.''
Former Olympic champions Steve Guerdat of Switzerland and Rodrigo Pessoa of Brazil failed to qualify, finishing 11th and 21st respectively.
The jumping competition ends Sunday.
World champion Boyd Exell of Australia took the overall lead in driving after the marathon at La Prairie racecourse, followed by top-ranked Chester Weber of the United States in second and Theo Timmerman of the Netherlands.
The driving finishes on Sunday with the obstacles.
Britain tops the medals table so far with seven gold medals and 15 overall.