The dust has settled after a very influential cross country day at the FEI European Eventing Championships, and we are now looking at a very different leaderboard than we had yesterday.
Ingrid Klimke produced a positively textbook cross country run with Horseware Hale Bob OLD to take hold of the leading position. They crossed the finish flags inside the time to remain on their dressage score of 30.3.
“I’m really thrilled. He was in such good shape. He was cantering on the minute points, and each difficult question felt easy. He was really so bold, so full of himself and so confident. It was really pure fun,” Ingrid smiled.
“I felt under pressure for sure, but Bobby was in such good form that I was nearly laughing and really had to concentrate. We had such fun out there!”
Michael Jung was a man on a mission across Rüdiger Schwarz’s track with fischerRocana FST. These two had the pedal down, finishing 15 seconds under the time – the fastest trip of the day.
Michael is eyeing a fourth consecutive European Championship win, a feat that has not yet been accomplished. He sits closely behind Ingrid on a score of 32.8, but the mare has not jumped clear on the final day of a CCI since Kentucky in 2015, according to EquiRatings, so all eyes will be on him as he goes into the ring tomorrow.
Swedish rider Sara Algotsson Ostholt edged herself and Reality 39 into bronze medal position when they finished just two seconds above optimum time. They have 35 penalty points going into tomorrow’s show jumping finale.
British pairs rose to the occasion today with four riders in the top ten. Nicola Wilson and Bulana were one second above the time for fourth as the highest placed from Team GB. “Bulana is so honest and good on a line. She was in a rhythm from start to finish. It’s very exciting! We had a group team hug and a jump around!” Nicola said.
Gemma Tattersall, who is riding as an individual, is in fifth with Quicklook V after picking up 3.6 time penalties. Tina Cook and Billy The Red added another strong result to the team roster after coming home clear inside the time for sixth place individually. Ros Canter and Allstar B added 1.6 time penalties to their score for eight place currently in their Senior Championship debut.
— EquiRatings (@EquiRatings) August 19, 2017
Sarah Ennis leapt from 14th to 7th to be the highest-ranked Irish rider after adding just .8 time penalties with Horseware Stellor Rebound. Kai Rüder and Colani Sunrise, who are riding individually for Germany, are in ninth place on 40.3. Pietro Roman and Barraduff close out the top ten after a double clear round for Italy gave them a two-phase score of 41.
Rüdiger Schwarz’s cross country ensured that this would not be a dressage competition. Of 77 starters, 63 finished. Only four riders finished within the time: Ingrid Klimke, Michael Jung, Tina Cook and Pietro Roman.
There were problems all over the map, but the most influential jumps were 4c, 8b, and 28b. Fence 4 was the first technical element on the course, and a big accuracy question. It caused issue for 14 pairs, one of which cleared the obstacle, but earned 50 penalties for a missed flag. Eight pairs picked up 20 penalties at 8b – a skinny chevron atop a mound – including Germany’s Julia Krajewski. Eight more came to grief at the angled brushes of fence 28 near the end of the course.
Of the 14 who did not complete, five were eliminated, five were rider falls and four were horse falls. EN was sad to learn today that one of the horse falls included Michal Knap’s (POL) Bob The Builder, who was later euthanized after suffering a broken front right long pastern bone.
— Equestrian Team GBR (@TeamGBR) August 19, 2017
With Nicola, Tina and Ros in the top ten, Great Britain handily took gold medal position with a score of 113.9 points. They have two rails in hand going into tomorrow’s show jumping.
Team Germany unraveled a bit on the cross country today with overnight leaders Bettina Hoy and Seigneur Medicott falling at fence 10, and team trailblazers Julia Krajewski and Samourai du Thot picking up 20 penalties at fence 8b. Despite this, they managed to hold onto silver medal position on 123 points thanks to Ingrid and Michael. Sweden was the only country to achieve four clear rounds, and they were rewarded with bronze medal position on 128.5 points.
Show jumping starts tomorrow at 11:15 a.m. local time/5:15 a.m. EST, and you can watch the action thanks to FEI TV.
EN is proud to have our Europeans coverage powered by EquiRatings, who are also the official statistics provider for the championships. Be sure to follow EquiRatings on Twitter @EquiRatings for real-time data, analysis and commentary as the action unfolds. Go Eventing.