Phillip Steiner and Cassina Dior are edging closer to their start at the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Final.

The Pip McCarroll-bred mare had her first European start at the weekend with two solid runs in the 1.4m and 1.35m two phase at the Green Valley Estate indoor show just 40 minutes from his Valkenswaard base.

Phillip was chuffed. “We started with a nice clear in the 1.35m two phase and then the following day were just out of the places with a good strong round in the 1.4m table A. We were entered for the grand Prix but after some thought on recent travel and more travel just weeks away, I made the decision to call it,” he said. “She gave her all for two days.”

He’s planning some indoor training this week and felt three days straight of competition just wasn’t what she needed.

Cassina Dior has settled well into her new base with 5* Australian rider Hilary Scott at The Oaks. “We are very fortunate to be able to base with her. She has every question already answered!”

The mare had travelled well from New Zealand with the duo switching stables within a few days of arriving. “I need to be able to do this mission and being around an Australian crew is so good,” says Phillip. “She has a beautiful set-up to train horses and a warm flat for me, so I am grateful for the opportunity here. It’s down to business now!”

The final runs April 4-8 in Omaha, Nebraska.