Sir Mark Todd and Tim Price are both in the top eight at the end of a thrilling day one of dressage at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials in the UK.
Mark will be ruing two errors during his test aboard NZB Campino but they still sit in sixth place on 30.8 penalty points. “The horse went really well I thought. He did a really nice test,” said Mark.
“Unfortunately I made two stupid errors – one forgetting the 20m circle and then that sort of put me off a bit and I halted in the wrong place at the end, so it certainly didn’t help my cause.”
But he sits well in touch with leader, world number one and defending champ, Oliver Townend (GBR) aboard MHS King Joules on 27.2.
Tim was also happy with his horse Bango, who is in eighth equal on a mark of 32.1. “He is not a dressage horse by any stretch of the imagination but he is a trier and is incredibly excited to be here – so he showed a little of that in his test with a bit of exuberance here and there.”
Tim felt the horse had “acquitted” himself well in the areas they genuinely struggle with, like flying changes and lateral work. “So from a horsemanship perspective, I was happy with him in those departments.”
Burghley is an event Tim and wife Jonelle would look towards at the beginning of every season, and discuss whether either had a horse that would suit the iconic event. “I am fortunate enough to have two here,” he said. “It is very exciting and I hope for a good one.”
Andrew Nicholson and Jet Set IV are the next best of the Kiwis in 16th place on 33.8. “I was very pleased with him. He feels a bit like he is a time bomb but he can do all the movements and he wants to do it right – it is only his inexperience that lets him down a bit.”
Caroline Powell and On the Brash scored 35.1 to finish the day in =21st. “He is quite hot-headed in the canter and the changes are quite difficult for him but once they are established he is going to be lovely.” She was really pleased to see his trot work getting so much better. “He is a great jumping machine and loves it – it is what he lives for. Dressage is a formality as far as he is concerned.”
Ginny Thompson is one of 15 first-times at the CCI4* at Burghley and she and Star Nouveau sit in 24th spot on 36.5.
There is still much to play for – Burghley is never just a dressage competition and riders are saying Captain Mark Phillips’ cross country course is as big in terms of dimensions as they have seen in a number of years. Townend is calling it “stamina sapping for the horses” – with three big hills and no real breathers it is going to be tough.
However, tonight brings the final round of dressage and Kiwis Dan Jocelyn aboard Dassett Cool Touch is on at 12.06pm (UK time), followed by Sir Mark Todd on Kiltubrid Rhapsody at 3.04pm, Tim Price on Ringwood Sky Boy at 3.59pm and Andrew Nicholson aboard Swallow Springs at 4.15pm.
HOW TO WATCH BURGHLEY
New Zealand viewers will be able to access the livestream via the Burghley Facebook page on the following days:
Dressage Day Two
Friday 31st September
LIVE and Replay coverage will also be available on Sky Sport in NZ:
Saturday 1st September
Sky Sport 7
Cross Country – Replay
Sunday 2nd September
Sky Sport 6
Showjumping – LIVE
Monday 3rd September
Sky Sport 1
Showjumping – Replay
Monday 3rd September
Sky Sport 3
The horse details:
Star Nouveau – owned by Elaine Butterworth, Anthony Quirk and Ginny Thompson
Teseo – owned by Philip Channer and Andrew Nicholson
Jet Set – owned by Libby Sellar
Swallow Springs – owned by Paul and Diana Ridgeon
NZB Campino – owned by New Zealand Bloodstock and Sir Mark Todd
Kiltubrid Rhapsody – owned by Niki Ryan and Dr Elizabeth Donald
Ringwood Sky Boy – owned by Verenna Allen and Tim Price
Bango – owned by The Numero Uno Syndicate
On the Brash – owned by Sarah Tobey and Sue Smiley
Dassett Cool Touch – owned by Therese Miller and Dan Jocelyn
By Diana Dobson – HP Media Liaison
Photos by Libby Law/ESNZ