An influential evening of show jumping shuffled the leaderboard at the Aachen CICO3* in Germany, with the top three after dressage all pulling rails to slip down the leaderboard. Then two of the top three after show jumping withdrew, giving us a very different leaderboard as we look ahead to tomorrow’s cross country.
Michael Jung and fischerTakinou and Julia Krajewski and Samourai du Thot, who sat tied for fourth place after dressage on 37.2, both jumped clear rounds inside the time for Germany to move to first place. Then Julia withdrew Samourai du Thot after show jumping to give Michael and fischerTakinou the automatic lead.
Reigning World Champions Sandra Auffarth and Opgun Louvo jumped clear to remain on their dressage score of 38.1 for third place, but then she also withdrew. Dressage leaders Bettina Hoy and Seigneur Medicott had two rails down but only dropped to second place on 39.0 following those two key withdrawals.
Shane Rose and his Rio mount CP Qualified jumped one of the 17 clear rounds and now sit in third place on 41.2. Ingrid Klimke and SAP Escada FRH jumped clear to move from 11th to fourth on 42.9. Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo, who sat in second place after dressage, pulled two rails to slip to fifth place on 43.4.
Looking to Team USA, only Lauren Kieffer and Jacqueline Mars’ Landmark’s Monte Carlo managed a clear round, an impressive feat and huge improvement over their last major competition at Rolex. Lauren rode beautifully and gave “Patrick” the confident piloting he needed. They remain on their dressage score of 48.9, which now has them sitting in 14th as the highest-placed U.S. combination.
Hannah Sue Burnett and Jacqueline Mars’ Harbour Pilot are close behind in 16th place on 49.6 after pulling one rail at fence 10, a yellow oxer at the start of the final line on Frank Rothenberger’s course. Three of the four U.S. team horses had a rail at this oxer, and it definitely emerged as a bogey fence. (Click here to see the course map.)
Matt Brown and the Blossom Creek Foundation’s Super Socks BCF pulled three rails in all, at fence one and then the first and third fences in the final line on course: that pesky yellow oxer at fence 10, six strides to a white vertical at fence 11, then eight strides on a bending line to a natural oxer at fence 12. They now sit in 32nd place on a score of 60.6.
Phillip Dutton and David Garrett’s Indian Mill were having a super round until that last line on course, when they pulled a rail at each of the final three fences. Twelve jumping faults added to their dressage score has them in 35th place on 62.0 as the current drop score for Team USA.
Gwendolen Fer and Romantic Love were eliminated after two refusals at fence 6a, the first fence at a combination of two liverpools. The late afternoon sun was casting heavy shadows over the fences when they went, which could have played a factor. French team rider Rodolphe Scherer withdrew Makara de Montiège before show jumping. With Rodolphe’s withdrawal and Gwendolen’s elimination, the French team is out of the Nations Cup.
Australia holds the lead in the Nations Cup standings after dressage, sitting on a team score of 139.8. New Zealand sits in second on 142.2, with Great Britain just 0.3 behind on 142.5 and Germany waiting in the wings just 0.4 behind in fourth place on 142.9. That leaves 3.1 penalty points separating the top four teams, setting the stage for a nail-biting cross country finale tomorrow.
Ireland now sits in fifth in the team standings on 157.1, about 17 points out of the lead. Team USA dropped one spot after show jumping to sixth on 159.1, about 19 points out of the lead. It’s going to be anyone’s game tomorrow as horses and riders tackle Rüdiger Schwarz’s notoriously tough cross country course.
Cross country runs from 10 a.m.-12:45 local time, or 4 a.m.-6:45 a.m. EST. For any early birds who want to watch, ClipMyHorse.TV has been doing a wonderful job today on the live stream and will also be broadcasting cross country tomorrow. It is free to watch at this link. Click here for the cross country order of go. Keep it locked on EN!