Will Coleman steered Obos O'Reilly, one of the most inexperienced horses in the CCI*** field into the lead by jumping clear round Derek Di Grazia's challenging cross country course at Bromont in the rain on Saturday afternoon. Having admitted he considered it more of a 'three and a half star track' on Friday afternoon, he came back to the press tent after his cross country ride to tell us all about it.
Sadly none of the owners in the syndicate were able to make it up to Canada to watch their horse this weekend, but as super-groom Shannon said proudly as she led him back to the barn, "He's not such a naughty pony now!" and I doubt this will be the last time we'll be seeing either of them in this position.
Phillip Dutton, 6th, galloping Annie Jones' and Tom Tierney's Fernhill Fugitive for home
Allison Springer and Copycat Chloe, 7th, looked great where I saw them - building a great partnership together. I spoke to Allison before she went this morning and I do have such confidence that these two are going to be an incredible partnership in the future. If anyone has the skill, talent and patience to bring out the best in a horse it's Allison, and listening to her talk about Chloe you know she already adores her, and today Chloe tried really hard for her.
Go Bunnie Sexton and Rise Against! Moving up to 8th place, they looked super on the first half of the course where I saw them, and Jenni reported seeing them finish looking very happy too.
Lauren Kieffer and Veronica slipped to 9th after a glance off at the corner in the arena following a long hold on course while the course builders repaired Fence 13. Rick Wallace and Ultimate Victory had hit the back rail hard breaking the pin, and we have since heard from Rick to let us know how 'Cody' is, "He seemed a bit tired coming up the hill to 13 and stalled over the top hitting his right stifle hard and breaking the pin. I trotted him and cautiously started back up but felt I should pull up! He went back to the barn in good shape but came up very sore on that stifle ! We had him X-rayed to rule out any fracture. He is badly bruised and resting comfortably in his stall! He will have some time off and be ready for the fall season!"
I didn't see Emily Beshear's 20 penalties on course but everywhere I saw her and River King they looked fabulous
Kate Chadderton and Collection Pass looked awesome - she told me this morning that she was slightly concerned about the going but that she was happy to be sitting on an OTTB - of the top 8 horses in the CCI***, except for one (Selena O'Hanlon's Foxwood High Hanoverian) all are either Irish Sport Horses or Thoroughbreds.
Selena O'Hanlon's A First Romance looked very strong but Selena is becoming renowned for her skills in this phase - remember Red Hills earlier this year? She's three for three at Bromont too today and sits in 4th, 5th and 13th place.
Susan Beebee and Wolf had a great ride through the coffin - such a lovely, extravagant horse; they had a silly fly-by at the corner at 22 and then sailed over it.
Jumping in the rain: Jon Holling and Zatopek B recovered from a run-out in the arena to finish well.
Polar Storm and Katie Willis, 17th
More rain is in the forecast for tomorrow, and the Horse Inspection is scheduled for 8am. Most people I have talked to will be starting the long drives home after the show-jumping so Sunday will be a long day, and Eventing Nation will be with you every step of the way. Sleep Well tonight, and Go Eventing!