Yesterdays cross country was incredibly challenging for all the horses and riders competing thanks to a number of factors. The leaderboard was really shaken up, largely thanks to the changes in dressage scoring making the other phases more influential. But this should mean that today’s show jumping should be really close an incredibly exciting.
Battling with the Elements
Firstly, the grounds team have done a fantastic job preserving the ground for this competition during the horrible weather we have been having. However, despite all their hard work the ground was quite holding still, meaning the horses had to work that little bit harder. The weather was also against them, with us having a huge and surprise heatwave just a week after we had freezing temperatures. This certainly didn’t help the horses stamina.
Very Tricky Course
But the conditions aside, this was still an incredibly challenging course. No one managed to get round within the time with the fastest combination being New Zealand’s Jonelle Price with Classic Moet who were just 1 second over the time. The average time penalties was around 20, but anything under 10 was a really fantastic score for the day.
Out of the 70+ riders who started the cross country yesterday, only 44 managed to finish with no jumping penalties. 3 riders broke pins and received 11 penalties, 9 had jumping penalties and 11 had horse and/or rider falls. Pippa Funnell and William Fox-Pitt are among the 9 riders which retired on course.
The Top 10 After Cross Country
- Jonelle Price & Classic Moet = 28.0
- Oliver Townend & Ballaghmor Class = 28.0*
- Rosalind Canter & Allstar B = 30.3
- Michael Jung & La Biosthetique – Sam FBW = 30.7
- Oliver Townend & Cooley SRS = 33.1
- Mark Todd & Kiltubrid Rapsody = 33.4
- Lauren Kieffer & Veronica = 34.6
- Gemma Tattersall & Arctic Soul = 35.2
- Padraig McCarthy & Mr Chunky = 35.3
- Mark Todd & Leonidas II = 36.3
* Oliver Townend is technically second despite having the same score as he was slower in the cross country phase.
It is fantastic to see the only ex racehorse, Arctic Soul, in the top 10 after the cross country phase. He had the second fasted time over the cross country which allowed him to climb lots of places after their dressage.
2 horses in the top 10
Both Mark Todd and Oliver Townend have both their horses in the top 10 after the cross country, putting them in a great position of having a placing after the showjumping today.
Warning for Oliver Townend
Oliver Townend received an official warning from the ground jury regarding hi over-use of the whip on both of his horses during the cross country phase. While no further action was taken there and then regarding his competition, they did say his horses would be looked at very carefully during the final hose inspection before the show jumping phase.
Where are some of our favourite horses and riders?
Not all of our favourite riders made the top 10 and several didn’t manage to complete the cross country at all. However, I still wanted to share with you where some of our favourite riders are currently sitting in the leaderboard before the show jumping.
- Sam Griffiths & Paulank Brockagh = 36.4, 11th
- Andrew Nicholson & Nereo = 37.5, 12th
- Tim Price & Ringwood Sky Boy = 38.2, 14th
- Simon Grieve & Drumbilla Metro = 37.1, 32nd
- Alexander Bragg & Zagreb = 80.6, 43rd
- Ben Hobday & Mulry’s Error = 129.9, 56th
Final Vet Inspection
As you know, all horses have to pass a final vet inspection before being able to continue onto the show jumping phase. This makes sure that they are fit and ready for the challenge ahead.
Despite the ground during looking extra closely at Oliver Townend’s two riders after his warning yesterday, both his horses passed this inspection. Unfortunately, last years winners Andrew Nicholson and Nereo were withdrawn after being sent to the hold box, so will not be continuing in the competition. Harry Dzenis, currently say in 40th place with Dromgurrihy Blue withdrew before inspection.
Other than that, all the horses passed and will be continuing onto the next stage of the competition!