British riders competing before the Luhmühlen Horse Trials cross-country

  • British riders are in a strong position ahead of the Longines Luhmühlen Horse Trials cross-country after impressing in the first phase.

    Overnight leaders Bubby Upton and Rachel Upton-owned Cannavaro lead the overall dressage results at the Luhmühlen Horse Trials, with a strong continent of Britons within touching distance of the top spots.

    Oliver Townend and son of Jumbo Dreamliner, owned by Angela and Mark Chamberlayne, are tentatively sixth at 29.6.

    “The canter was good, the trot he made me carry a little too much today, but he’s a big horse in the heat. I gave him about 10 minutes to warm up, maybe it was eight minutes too long,” Oliver said.

    “It’s very easy in the cold rain in Lincoln with the wind at your back. When it’s hot and still, he’s a big horse and obviously that affects them more.

    “We are where we are. I was quite happy, that’s what we expected and tomorrow I was very lucky in sixth position.

    Fiona Kashel was among the standout British performances on Friday afternoon. Fiona is new to this level, having made her five-star badminton debut aboard Creevagh Silver, and this was the first CCI5* start for her race here, Frank Breach’s WSF Carthago.

    Fiona played long term with this bubbly Irish Sport Horse gelding, putting him in the truck to experience the atmosphere of big events as a young horse.

    “He’s a really talented horse, but he needs to be steered. He has a switch that goes from zero to hero in under a second,” Fiona said.

    “He is very good on the flat. He really came and he has so much strength. Being at three days suits him, because he’s so rideable here.

    The pair are tied for ninth overnight with fellow Brit Tom McEwen and rising star Bob Chaplin, owned by Fred and Penny Barker, on 30.9.

    “He was really good, I probably did five minutes too much in the warm-up, so I really blame myself for that,” Tom said. “He’s probably had an experience like this since The Lion with Tappers (Paul Tapner) when he was six. Even though he’s super cool, he gets a little nervous in there. But he stuck it out the whole way and did his best.

    Badminton rerouters Kirsty Chabert and Classic VI, owned by Carol Sommers and John Johnston, are 11th at 31.1, while Kylie Roddy and Fox Family SRS Kan Do are 12th at 31.4.

    “He actually felt better than he did in Badminton, I just missed the first change and at that level it gets a bit pricey, right?” Kylie said.

    “His superpower is that he’s a very rideable horse. Sometimes he lacks shine in the arena because of that. With the heat today, maybe that part of him has been a bit rejected, but I can’t take away what he gave me in there.

    Kylie has been working with her farrier to try a new approach to shoeing with ‘George’, after losing a shoe at Badminton and then another at Little Downham, which will be put to the test on Saturday.

    “Sometimes when one door closes another opens, I think that’s what you have to be aware of in this sport,” she said, adding that she liked the look of the course of cross by Mike Etherington-Smith.

    “It’s a very big galloping horse, which can be transformed into a quad. Normally you get the small pocket rockets which are good for that, then you get the big gallopers which are good for the other part. Somehow he manages to juggle those two balls.

    Lawyer Max Gordon is tentatively 22nd aboard his family’s Redwood Clover on 36.6. Pip Cross and Scoop De Ferbet, which she co-owns with Tina Hayward and the Scoop Syndicate, are 28th (39.1). David Doel and Danielle Dunn are 31st and 32nd respectively with their rides Ferro Point (40.4), owned by Christine Lees, and Grandslam (40.6), which Danielle co-owns with Anne Chapman. David is also 41st with the Pages’ Dunges Don Pérignon (41.1).

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