Only two riders beat the clock on Derek di Grazia’s CCI3* cross country course today at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International, and dressage leaders Frankie Thieriot Stutes and Chatwin skipped around 6 seconds inside the time to hold their lead on 27.3.
Frankie and Chatwin, a 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding (Contendro I X Oktav, by Oldtimer) owned by The Chatwin Group, won the Rebecca Farm CCI3* this year and finished fourth at Bromont CCI3* last year, but Fair Hill is a different beast.
“I wanted to attack the course,” Frankie said. “I think it was mentally tough the whole way around — for me and my horse, too. He has so much heart, and I was really proud of him … You have to stay committed the whole way around — both your horse and you.”
Frankie will have a rail in hand for show jumping tomorrow as she continues her quest to be crowned 2018 Dutta Corp/USEF National CCI3* Champion.
Buck Davidson and Maya Simmons’s Archie Rocks had the fastest round of the day, cruising home 7 seconds inside the time to move up from ninth after dressage to second place on 32.4. While Buck only started competing the 10-year-old Thoroughbred gelding (Le Monde X Unbridled Diva, by Unbridled Jet) this season, they have quickly forged a bond.
“He’s a true Thoroughbred,” Buck said. “He really tries hard, and he seems to have trusted me right away. We’ve developed a partnership. He’s very fast and very honest. He gave me a great ride today.”
Boyd Martin and Long Island T, a 12-year-old Oldenburg/Thoroughbred gelding (Ludwig von Bayern X Haupstsbuch Highlight, by Heraldik xx) owned by The Long Island T Syndicate, added 4.0 time penalties to move up one spot on the leaderboard to third on 33.4.
“He’s really come on this year. I did a CCI3* at Jersey Fresh and just scraped around (editor’s note — he still won it) and six months later he’s felt bigger and stronger,” Boyd said. “He usually does a bit better in the dressage, but the biggest challenge for us has been the cross country and the jumping. Around Fair Hill you really know if you’ve got a four-star horse. Today he showed me he’s ready to go to Kentucky or Luhmühlen next year.”
Jenny Caras and Fernhill Fortitude, a 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Courage II X Misty Matilda, by Clover) owned by the Fernhill Fortitude Syndicate, finished just 1 second over the optimum time to move up from 12th after dressage to fourth on 34.4.
Sydney Conley Elliott and Cisko A, a 12-year-old Westphalian gelding (Cayetano L X Rhiannon M, by Ribot) owned by Carol Stephens, added 2.4 time penalties to move from 11th up to fifth place on 36.1.
Lauren Kieffer and Jacqueline Mars’s Landmark’s Monte Carlo were the first pair out on course and finished just 1 second over the optimum time to move from 21st after dressage up to sixth place on 37.0. Lauren also sits in seventh on 39.2 with Jacqueline Mars’s Vermiculus after adding 8.4 time penalties.
Caroline Martin also has two rides in the top 10. Sherrie Martin’s Danger Mouse added 12.0 time penalties to slip to eighth place on 41.0. Caroline and Sherrie Martin’s The Apprentice added 12.4 time penalties to drop to 10th on 43.0. Caroline said yesterday her goal was two steady, clear rounds — mission accomplished.
Cornelia Dorr and her own Sir Patico MH impressed in their Fair Hill CCI3* debut with a clear round and just 4.0 time penalties to move from 21st after dressage up to ninth place on 41.8.
Dry conditions and perfect going contributed to a 69% clear jumping rate over Derek di Grazia’s CCI3* course. We saw two rider falls and one horse fall, all of which resulted in no injuries. You can relive all the action and see what happened where in EN’s open thread here.
The final horse inspection starts at 8 a.m. EST tomorrow, and CCI3* show jumping will start at 1 p.m. EST. Show jumping will be recorded live and available to watch on demand tomorrow afternoon on USEF Network. Stay tuned for much more from Fair Hill. Go Eventing.