Welcome back to the second day of eventing at the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games! Yesterday we watched as half of the horses put on their dancing shoes, and today the second half of the field will get their chance.
Quite a few of the heavy hitters ended up in the Friday sessions, so this preview will be split between morning and afternoon. Check back at lunch for a quick preview of those going later in the day. Click here to see the order of go with ride times for today and here for all the details on how to watch live, with live scores here.
The competitors will be performing 2017 FEI 4* Test B, which was used for the first time this year. At this point, anyone who has ridden in a 4* this year has had a chance to perform this test, but competitors who haven’t made it to a 4* in 2018 will be trying it out for the first time.
A huge change in dressage scoring this year is the loss of the 1.5 multiplier on the penalty marks, making the scoring a straight conversion to penalties. An average of 70.0% from the ground jury translates into 30.0 penalty points, instead of 45.0 as it would have in previous years. This will cluster the competitors closer together after the first phase, making the jumping phases more influential.
Anne-Mette Binder of Denmark, Andrew Bennie of New Zealand and Jane Hamlin of the United States make up the ground jury.
FRIDAY MORNING, MORNING SESSIONS
Tom McEwen (GBR) and Toledo de Kerser: This pair has broken into the 20s in seven of their 15 3/4* starts, two of their four 4* starts, and have never had a score worse than 33.5 in their 3/4* career.
Aiming for: 27.8
Ride Time: 10:27 a.m.
Emma McNab (AUS) and Fernhill Tabasco: Emma and Fernhill Tabasco have scored over 70% in 12 of their 15 starts at the 3/4* levels since 2016, but one of the two times they failed to reach that threshold was in their last outing at Le Pin au Haras CIC3* in early August. Still, this pair is ranked in the top five in the field for personal bests and averages at 3*/4* level and is another whose 4* average is better than their 3* average.
Aiming for: 26.7
Ride Time: 10:43 a.m.
Tim Price (NZL) and Cekatinka: Tim “borrowed” the ride on Cekatinka in 2017 while his wife Jonelle was on maternity leave and managed to keep the ride for this season. They’ve danced their way to one of the top 10 3* averages in the field — 29.2. They’ve been chipping away at that average recently as well, dropping their 12-month average to a 28.2.
Aiming for: 28.2
Ride Time: 10:59 a.m.
Stefano Brecciaroli (ITA) and Byrnesgrove First Diamond: Stefano only paired up with this former Andrew Nicholson ride this year, clocking in three starts at the 3* level since March. In just those three starts they’ve managed to have the fourth best 3* dressage average in the field, sitting on a 28.0. Consistency has been the name of the game for these two, with a personal best of 27.0.
Aiming for: 28.0
Ride Time: 11:30 a.m.
Thibaut Vallette (FRA) and Qing Du Briot ENE HN: This horse’s 3* personal best of 23.2 is in the top five of the field and his 4* personal best of 25.8 is in the top four. His 4* average sits behind only SAP Hale Bob OLD when looking at horses with multiple 4* tests. He’s also one of the 11 horses in the field whose 4* average is better than their 3* average.
Aiming for: 25.8
Ride Time: 11:38 a.m.
OTHERS OF NOTE
Jessica Phoenix with Pavarotti and Padraig McCarthy with Mr Chunky have both proven an ability to get into the 20s at the 4* level, while Louise Svensson Jahde with Waikiki have gotten close to cracking 75% at the 3* level.