Burghley Buzz: Cross Country Day Live Blog

Rise and shine, it’s Burghley cross country time! Photo by Tilly Berendt.

It’s time for some Burghley cross country action! I hopped off a plane home from AEC at about midnight last night, so I can’t really speak to the amount of brain cells I’m in possession of, but whatever is left up there is ready to party, Burghley style.

We’ll be getting underway at 11:15 a.m. local time (6:15 a.m. EST), and as is tradition here on EN I’ll be keeping you up to speed with live updates throughout the morning. Of course, my updates can’t come close to watching in person, so be sure to snag a Burghley TV subscription to follow along (and catch up on demand if you’re a normal person who enjoys sleep).

Derek di Grazia has quite a challenge built in his sophomore year designing at this British 5*. You can read Tilly’s preview here, view the course on CrossCountryApp here, and read how riders are reacting to it here. The optimum time is 11 minutes, 6 seconds.

You can find the full running order in order of standing here. If you’re looking for the order of go, you can find it here.

Refresh this page periodically for the latest updates. Here’s to safe rides to all – let’s get after it!

Defender Burghley: [Website] [Entries] [Program] [Live Stream] [EN’s Coverage] [Ride Times[Live Scores]

EN’s coverage of Burghley is presented by Kentucky Performance Products. Click here to learn all about their full line of science-backed nutritional support products, including Neigh-Lox Advanced for digestive support.

11:21 a.m. ET: Here are a few numbers to mull over from today:

Completion rate: 37/58 (63.8%)
Clear rate: 25/58 (43.1%)
Clear inside the time: 2/58 (3.4%)
Fastest round: David Doel and Galileo Nieuwmoed (10:57)

Tilly Berendt will be along later today with the full report from today. Thank you for following along with us!

11:17 a.m. ET: And Harry finishes with 9.6 time penalties aboard Tenareze to finish the day! I’ll be back shortly with some numbers from the day.

11:16 a.m. ET: Here’s a look at the top five after cross country (full scores can be found here):

11:14 a.m. ET: So Harry now has the track to himself as he navigates to the Cottesmore Leap at 18 with Tenareze.

11:12 a.m. ET: Ballaghmor Class is looking a bit winded at this last part of the course, but he’s still proving to be very genuine for Oliver. Oliver shouts “long route” in the water as he was eyeing the direct route in the water at the Lions Bridge. Oliver can afford six seconds of time and I don’t think he’s going to make it, but it will be close tomorrow. He’s 12 seconds over and 4.8 time penalties, into second for this pair on 29.0. Tim Price will not have a rail in hand.

11:11 a.m. ET: Ballaghmor Class gives the Dairy Mound a hard rub but Oliver’s picked him up and carried him through. Harry is clear at the Trout Hatchery.

11:10 a.m. ET: Tenareze looks green at the Leaf Pit, but Harry uses all of his experience to get the job done. Here’s a look at that Triple Bar:

GIF via Burghley TV.

11:09 a.m. ET: David Doel and Ferro Point had one more 20 at the Lions Bridge and have finished. Oliver is clear through the Irish Bank at 17. Harry navigates the Defender Valley and survives a hairy moment at the Triple Bar.

11:08 a.m. ET: A quick update on our North Americans: nearly all of our pairs will find themselves within the top 15, with Boyd and Tsetserleg highest placed.

11:07 a.m. ET: And our final pair is on course!

11:06 a.m. ET: David Doel and Ferro Point have perhaps the best ride through the Irish Bank at 17AB all day. Oliver is clear through the Rolex Combination hedges. Harry Meade will close us out with Tenareze.

11:02 a.m. ET: And our penultimate pair is away: Oliver Townend and Ballaghmor Class could take the lead if they can go clear inside the time. This pair has won here before (2017) and hasn’t finished off the podium here in three finishes.

11:01 a.m. ET: Boyd’s time is recorded as 9.6 penalties to go onto a score of 37.7 and sixth place at the moment. He’s also currently in 10th with On Cue.

10:59 a.m. ET: Ferro Point is the latest to drive by the C of the Leaf Pit, but he and David Doel are clear on the next attempt. Bummer!

10:57 a.m. ET: Oh no, it looks like Tom actually pulled Toledo up and it looked like the horse was lame on a front leg. We’ll keep you posted. David Doel and Ferro Point are on course and have the track to themselves for now.

10:55 a.m. ET: Man, what a day – Tom McEwen and Toledo de Kerser have now retired after some trouble, but I missed exactly where it happened. Harry Mutch and HD Bronze drive by the C of the Leaf Pit and are retiring now.

10:54 a.m. ET: Wills Oakden is working on another fast clear – he’s not going to be inside the time but he’s going to be damn close with 4.4 penalties accumulated with Arklow Puissance. What a great day for Wills!

10:52 a.m. ET: Thomas seems to have picked up a second wind and is home clear. They’ll recalculate his time and I’ll keep you posted.

10:51 a.m. ET: Ok, Boyd has been restarted and is now clear through the Boodles Raindance. Unsure if they were checking on Thomas or if there was some sort of repair to a fence needed. Harry Mutch now returns with his second ride, HD Bronze, and he’s one of just four left to see today.

10:51 a.m. ET: A look at Tim and Vitali on course:

10:49 a.m. ET: Boyd is shown now talking with the TD Andrew Temkin. Still not sure what’s going on.

10:47 a.m. ET: Now Boyd has also been pulled up, but at least before he made his approach to Boodles Raindance and not in the middle of it. I think Grace may have just damaged the fish in the water ahead of him, but I’ll keep you posted. We’re also joined now by Tom McEwen and his Tokyo partner Toledo de Kerser, who stand as one threat to Tim’s lead if they can go quick.

10:45 a.m. ET: Grace and Game Changer survive a hairy moment at the Lions Bridge but she’s finished clear now with 14.8 time. We’re also joined by Wills Oaken and his second ride, Arklow Puissance.

10:44 a.m. ET: Boyd at the Joules at the Maltings. He’s having to work a little here but Thomas is looking positive and confident.

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:42 a.m. ET: Grace gets a little loose through the Dairy Mounds and gives the pins a hard rub but she’s still working on a clear, dangling martingale and all.

10:40 a.m. ET: Really pleased with how these horses are finishing, I’ll keep saying it! Here’s a look at Boyd straight as an arrow through the B and C of the Leaf Pit:

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:38 a.m. ET: Ah rats, Sophie Fouracre just gets off her line and goes past the C element of the Dairy Mound. She’s clear on the long route attempt. Boyd comes into the Defender Valley at 5. Boyd has talked about Thomas not wanting to turn right early on course at times, and this question was to be a first test of that — all good here.

10:37 a.m. ET: And here comes Thomas blazing out of the box with Boyd Martin.

10:35 a.m. ET: Richard Coney is home clear with Poetry In Motion. It looks like Grace’s martingale has broken, but she’s carrying on and will be hoping it doesn’t interfere.

10:32 a.m. ET: And here’s Grace Taylor, who’s made a big impression with some strong rounds with Game Changer this year. She’s quite competitively placed after earning a sub-30 score in the dressage. Boyd Martin will be back with us next aboard Tsetserleg TSF.

10:31 a.m. ET:

10:30 a.m. ET: Our newest starters are Sophie Fouracre and Lordana vh Leysehof Z, to be followed by our next American pair Grace Taylor and Game Changer.

10:29 a.m. ET: Tom Crisp picks up 10.8 time penalties with Liberty & Glory and comes home clear and happy.

10:28 a.m. ET: “It was hard work, but that’s the nature of the beast – it’s Burghley. Whilst this horse has given me some amazing rides, with Badminton earlier this year in the deep going – today he just wasn’t taking me the same, so you have to revise your plan a bit,” Tim said of Vitali. “I went into survival mode after about three minutes thinking, ‘this is a long way home’, so I’m just really proud of him.”

10:27 a.m. ET: Our latest starter, 24-year-old Richard Coney, is clear through the Trout Hatchery with Poetry In Motion.

10:26 a.m. ET: Eventing’s power duo share a moment after a clear cross country from Vitali:

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:23 a.m. ET: Tim will keep his lead for the moment with 8 time penalties on a score of 26.7. If Oliver or Tom can go quick, they will overtake him for the overnight lead.

10:23 a.m. ET: The lovely Liberty and Glory at the Trout Hatchery:

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:22 a.m. ET: Tim Price is headed for home and we don’t have a clock on him but the commentators all believe he’s a bit down on the markers.

10:20 a.m. ET: A look behind the scenes:

10:20 a.m. ET: Tim very nearly comes unseated after Vitali just drags a leg over the Irish Bank at 17. Whew!

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:18 a.m. ET: Tom Crisp and the absolutely lovely mare Liberty & Glory are our next to see as Tim navigates the Joules at the Maltings.

10:16 a.m. ET: Tim Price uses his stick to gently encourage Vitali to move away from the Trout Hatchery.

10:15 a.m. ET: Well it looks like Julia has now been eliminated for the blood in the mouth. Definitely a good call to stand by the rule, but I also stand by the fact that stopping a rider in the middle of a combination is nothing short of dangerous and irresponsible.

10:13 a.m. ET: Wow, Julia has been pulled up in the middle of the Boodles Raindance. Not a fan of that stopping point…looks like perhaps there is some blood in the mouth here and Ardeo Berlin is being checked out by the vets. Still not a fan of that stopping point at all.

10:11 a.m. ET: France’s Arthur Duffort and Toronto d’Aurois run into trouble at the Leaf Pit and have retired here. Julia Norman is working hard on a clear round and is through the Fairfax & Favor Keepers. And here we go with our leaders! Let’s see if Tim Price and Vitali can make good on their 18.7. He has about five time penalties in hand at the moment.

10:09 a.m. ET: Sam Watson points out that fast, tidy feet are a necessity for a handy event horse as this ability gives the rider more options. However, this can often be a curse in the dressage as these horses will struggle to achieve the more elevated, extended movement naturally.

10:08 a.m. ET: The MIM pins at the Dairy Mound element C do their job as James can’t quite get Milchem Eclipse back on his hind end to make it over cleanly. That’ll be 11 penalties on their card.

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:05 a.m. ET: A look at some more fancy footwork at the Leaf Pit, as demonstrated now by Zimbabwe’s Julia Norman and Ardeo Berlin:

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:03 a.m. ET: Padraig and HHS Noble Call take a slight detour and will add a few more seconds to their final time.

GIF via Burghley TV.

10:01 a.m. ET: HHS Noble Call is another to give the B at the Dairy Mound a very hard rattle, but he and Padraig are still working on a clear round. James Rushbrook is clear through the Trout Hatchery.

9:59 a.m. ET: The global 5* average clear range is 55%, and Sam brings up the point that the best cross country horses in the world come to Burghley, which is well-known as the toughest 5* track of the bunch, which often leads to a higher than average clear rate. Today, that’s not the case with around a 40% clear rate at this point.

9:57 a.m. ET: James Rushbrook and Milchem Eclipse are away. We’re just a couple of combinations away from seeing our dressage leaders, Tim Price and Vitali, on course.

9:56 a.m. ET: Sarah Clark has been having a cracking round, making her way home via the Lions Bridge water.

9:51 a.m. ET: Tom Bird, the youngest competitor this weekend at 21, completes with Rebel Rhyme, a couple issues out there but a completion nonetheless. Ireland’s Padraig McCarthy and HHS Noble Call are the next to see out on course as fellow Irishman Sam Watson now joins Nicole Brown in the commentator’s booth. I always love Sam’s commentary and his thoughts on the sport.

9:42 a.m. ET: We’ve 16 more combinations to see today, including overnight leaders Tim Price and Vitali, Boyd Martin and Tsetserleg, Grace Taylor and Game Changer, Oliver Townend and Ballaghmor Class, Tom McEwen and Toledo de Kerser, to name just a few pairs with potential. Australia’s Sarah Clark and LV Balou Jeanz are our next out of the box.

9:41 a.m. ET: Tom Bird and Rebel Rhyme pick up 20 at the C of the Leaf Pit — definitely the most influential fence today so far.

9:39 a.m. ET: And a look at first-timer Holly Richardson and Bally Louis:

9:38 a.m. ET: Take a look at Pippa’s round with Majas Hope:

9:38 a.m. ET: “I just can’t believe he was clear around Burghley and it’s our first five-star!” Emma Thomas says at the finish.

9:36 a.m. ET: Another one bites the dust as Lauren Lillywhite falls from Hacien at the Rolex combination. She’ll be alright it looks like, but what a disappointment for her.

9:35 a.m. ET: Nooooooo – Tiana and Cancaras Girl look to have parted ways at the Irish Horse Bank. They both look ok, but what a bummer. Our latest starters are Lauren Lillywhite and Hacien, followed by Tom Bird and Rebel Rhyme.

9:32 a.m. ET: AH after that amazing save, Tiana now runs into trouble with a glance-off at the first corner of the Joules at the Maltings. She’s clear on the second attempt. 5* first timer Emma Thomas is on her way home and looking absolutely ready to go around again. Emma has produced this little pocket rocket herself and isn’t going to be that far off the optimum either.

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:29 a.m. ET: Wow!!! Tiana just made the SAVE of the YEAR, with a popped airvest and all, at the Leaf Pit. They’re clear on the second attempt and continuing on.

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:27 a.m. ET: 12.4 time penalties for Will and Mama’s Magic Way and a lovely clear round. Mason looks quite well coming home.

9:26 a.m. ET: Will navigates the Boodles Raindance at 25 and is getting close to home. I think he’ll be down on the time a bit, but he also certainly hasn’t been hanging about.

A quick word from our sponsor, Kentucky Performance Products!

9:24 a.m. ET: Our next starter is U.S. rider based in England Tiana Coudray with Cancaras Girl.

9:23 a.m. ET: Sam Watson brings SAP Talisman home just one second over the time, the quickest since those two double clears earlier in the day. Will is over the Cottesmore Leap with Mason.

9:22 a.m. ET: Good conditions and good designing are bringing horses home looking really well today. It’s really nice to see — well done to their riders with their fitness work.

9:22 a.m. ET: “I think he’s got plenty of blood, but over the years I feel like I don’t have quite as much blood!” Pippa Funnell says at the finish.

9:21 a.m. ET: Really strong through the Trout Hatchery for Will and Mason.

9:20 a.m. ET: Another debut pair, Emma Thomas and Icarus, are our next out of the box.

9:20 a.m. ET: Go back on board with Boyd and On Cue:

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:18 a.m. ET: Pippa Funnell stops the clock with 8.8 seconds of time, which will keep her well in contention on a 38.4 and fourth position. Sam Watson and SAP Talisman quickly navigate the triple combination at the Dairy Mound. Will and Mama’s Magic Way show off some epic footwork at the Leaf Pit:

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:17 a.m. ET: Will and Mason attacking the early oxers in the arena:

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:15 a.m. ET: Oh hey, Mason:

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:13 a.m. ET: A look at the very bold ride through the Leaf Pit from Sam Watson and SAP Talisman:

GIF via Burghley TV.

9:11 a.m. ET: Sadly Aistis and Commander VG have fallen at the A element of the Dairy Mound. Commander VG wasn’t immediately on his feet but was likely just catching his breath — the next view shows him up and walking away. The pins did activate in this instance.

9:09 a.m. ET: Another pair I’m very keen to watch today will be our next: Ireland’s Sam Watson of EquiRatings and SAP Talisman. Following Sam will be Will Faudree and Mama’s Magic Way.

9:08 a.m. ET: Pippa takes the red flag down at the C of the Leaf Pit, but looked to be well clear inside from my view with Majas Hope.

9:05 a.m. ET: Next away is Rolex Grand Slam and two-time Burghley winner Pippa Funnell with Majas Hope.

9:04 a.m. ET: Louise Harwood has retired after trouble at the Maltings.

9:03 a.m. ET: Lithuania’s Aistis Aistis Vitkauskas is on course and takes a big risk at the Leaf Pit but is clear on the direct route. Here’s a look at Boyd’s helmet cam with On Cue through this question:

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:59 a.m. ET: Louise Harwood is the latest to have a glance-off at the C element of the Leaf Pit. She’s clear on the second attempt.

8:58 a.m. ET: Gah! Tom Rowland’s weekend ends at the Maltings corners after a valiant effort to save it:

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:55 a.m. ET: We still have yet to see a third pair achieve the optimum time, with David and Wills still sitting in the clubhouse lead position. Louise Harwood and Native Spirit are our latest starters.

8:54 a.m. ET: What a round! Holly Richardson finishes with time, but no matter — a safe and clear Burghley cross country debut is in the books!

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:52 a.m. ET: Bummer – Richard Skelt takes a tumble from Credo after activating the MIM rail at the open oxer at 6. Both he and Credo look to be no worse for the wear. We’re also joined by Tom Rowland and Possible Mission. Our debut pair, Holly Richardson and Bally Louis are making their way home and looking fit and full of run – lovely!

8:48 a.m. ET: And that’s Burghley cross country, conquered! Jennie and FE Lifestyle finish with 15.6 time — what a debut for this pair and what awesome riding.

8:47 a.m. ET: A look at Jennie at the Boodles Raindance (24/25):

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:46 a.m. ET: Jennie is riding her ass off here, getting Foxy clean through the Dairy Mound at 20.

8:44 a.m. ET: Cottesmore Leap: check!

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:43 a.m. ET: Jennie is clear at the Irish Horse Bank complex at 17.

8:41 a.m. ET: 5* debut pair Holly Richardson and Bally Louis are heading out now!

8:40 a.m. ET: Oliver makes a wise decision to pull up now after Swallow Springs puts his back legs down in the A element of the Dairy Mound. This will change up the standings, as he was in second with this horse, and leaves him with just one to go in Ballaghmor Class. Jennie is clear through the Trout Hatchery. Go girl!

8:39 a.m. ET: Jennie chooses the left handed side at C of the Leaf Pit and has one of the better trips through this line so far.

8:38 a.m. ET: Jennie and Foxy are safe and straight through the Defender Valley at 5.

8:36 a.m. ET: Swallow Springs stands a bit off the second corner at the Joules at the Maltings, but all clear so far. Cavalier Crystal is m making her way home with Harry — he’s not going to be far off the time, but just a hair over I think.

8:35 a.m. ET: Here we go! Jennie Saville leaves the box in her first Burghley with Tim and Nina Gardner’s FE Lifestyle. She told me when she entered there wasn’t another horse she’d have chosen to tick this box with. Let’s cheer her on around this epic track!

8:33 a.m. ET: A heart-stopping moment for Oliver and Swallow Springs at the Leaf Pit, but they’ve made it through unscathed:

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:31 a.m. ET: Bouncy Cavalier Crystal is looking very much in her element in her Burghley and 5* debut with Harry:

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:28 a.m. ET: Well scores are showing Michael Owen and Bradeley Law have retired, most likely after that drive-by at the Leaf Pit. This won’t be the ending to his career Michael was hoping for, but what a star Bradeley Law has been for him. It’s been an honor to follow him. We will now be joined by Oliver Townend and Swallow Springs, who are currently in a tie with himself for second place. Jennie Saville and FE Lifestyle, our next U.S. pair, will follow Oliver.

8:27 a.m. ET: Wabbit is still looking keen as ever as Jessie navigates the Lions Bridge direct route. She’s a bit down on the clock but she will be close. Nothing runs like a Thoroughbred! She’s going to stop the clock less than a minute over — great round from these two!

8:25 a.m. ET Our trailblazer Harry Meade is back with his second ride, Cavalier Crystal. Michael Owen and Bradeley Law looked to not have made the jump at the C of the Leaf Pit but it looked like they continued on…

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:23 a.m. ET: Kristina Hall Jackson and CMS Google come home with some time and those unfortunate 20 penalties at the Dairy Mound. Jessie and Wabbit are over the Cottesmore Leap.

8:22 a.m. ET: Some highlights from Lauren Innes’ awesome round earlier:

8:19 a.m. ET: After a huge jump over the A, CMS Google has a runout at the B of the Dairy Mound combination. Jessie and Wabbit make quick work of the Trout Hatchery water. We are also joined on course by Michael Owen and Bradeley Law, who is running his final 5* this weekend at the age of 19 years young.

8:17 a.m. ET: Wabbit is super keen down the Leaf Pit and they are able to make the straight route work without trouble. Here’s a look at them earlier at the Defender Valley:

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:16 a.m. ET: A look at Kristina Hall Jackson and CMS Google making it happen at the bounces at the Trout Hatchery:

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:15 a.m. ET: Here we go with our next North American pair and sole Canadian representative today: Jessie Phoenix and Wabbit with the Cute Ears.

8:13 a.m. ET: Interesting choice here as Kristina Hall Jackson opts to go long at the Leaf Pit, perhaps because she felt CMS Google might be too keen off the drop and encounter the same trouble many others have. It pays off, and they stand off from the brush at C but make the line work.

8:12 a.m. ET: Matt Heath and Askari climb all over the B element of the Dairy Mound but leave the pins unscathed.

GIF via Burghley TV.

8:10 a.m. ET: CMS Google and Kristina Hall Jackson are our latest starters as we move toward the halfway mark. Andrew Heffernan has also opted to retire Harthill Phantom ahead of Cottesmore Leap.

8:10 a.m. ET: Highlights from Boyd and On Cue’s round:

8:07 a.m. ET: Askari and Matthew Heath are the latest to fall victim to the corner at the Maltings, also picking up a drive-by here but clear on the second attempt. Andrew Heffernan also has a drive-by at the Leaf Pit, coming in smoking hot to the brush and unable to make it work. The big brush oxer on an uphill approach ahead of this encourages a forward stride, but then you’ve got to have enough management to get the horse’s eye on the left or right-handed brush. Also an update: Emily King’s missed flag penalty has also been removed, so she’ll just be sitting on the 11 for the pin falling and time penalties.

8:05 a.m. ET: Dutch rider Andrew Heffernan now leaves the box with Harthill Phantom; this is Andrew’s first 5* start since 2017 and Harthill Phantom’s debut at the level.

8:04 a.m. ET: Alice Casburn and Topspin turn in a speedy round; they’ll collect 7.6 time but will but themselves well into contention for a strong finish with that scrappy round.

8:03 a.m. ET: Our latest starters are the very experienced Matthew Heath with a new 5* horse, Askari, who was produced through the 3* level by Dickie Waygood.

8:02 a.m. ET: Luc Chateau has retired after a glance-off at the B element of the Joules at the Maltings. This is set on a very forward four strides, requiring commitment and concentration on the part of horse and rider.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:59 a.m. ET: To catch up on scores so far, our clubhouse leader is currently David Doel, who achieved a clear round inside the time with his first horse, Galileo Nieuwmoed, earlier today. He’s one of two clears inside the time — Wills Oaken and Oughterard Cooley are the other pair to earn the time so far. Luc Chateau has a hairy ride through the bounces at the Trout Hatchery, and Alice Casburn survives some trickiness at the Fairfax & Favor Keepers after a huge leap over the Cottesmore Leap:

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:58 a.m. ET: Francis brings DHI Purple Rain home quite well with some time, but much improvement from their last attempt here where the horse appeared to tire fairly early on.

7:55 a.m. ET: Our first of two French pairs, Luc Chateau and Viens du Mont out seeking their third 5* finish this weekend and their first Burghley together.

7:54 a.m. ET: A handful of horses have banked the massive Irish Horse Bank at 17, including DHI Purple Rain, who also almost takes out the cameraman on his way out!

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:51 a.m. ET: We’re now joined by 21-year-old Alice Casburn and Topspin, already with a Burghley and a Badminton under their belt and looking for a strong performance today. Here’s a look at Francis Whittington and DHI Purple Rain through the Trout Hatchery:

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:49 a.m. ET: Ah, bummer. Tim and Gaston have had another problem at the Joules at the Maltings and are now opting to retire.

7:44 a.m. ET: Francis Whittington and DHI Purple Rain are our next to see, looking for a Burghley completion after coming here last year and opting to retire on course.

7:43 a.m. ET: Lauren Innes and Global Fision finish with about a minute of time, and she looks thrilled. Nicely done! Meanwhile, Tim is the latest to have a glance-off at the brush at the Leaf Pit, another one to go for the bold, long stride to the final element and paying the price for it.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:42 a.m. ET: Also some highlights from Harry Meade and Away Cruising’s pathfinding round:

7:39 a.m. ET: Lauren Innes is clear at the Cottesmore Leap with Global Fision M. Tim Cheffings (who is celebrating his 40th birthday today!) and Gaston are our new starters, looking for a first 5* completion this weekend.

7:36 a.m. ET: Phil Brown is our latest starter with Harry Robinson. They run into trouble at both Defender Valley and the Leaf Pit and have opted to call it a day.

7:31 a.m. ET: Here’s a glimpse at Wills Oakden’s cracking round earlier:

7:30 a.m. ET::

7:30 a.m. ET: Our first Kiwi of the day will be Lauren Innes (who celebrated her birthday yesterday — happy birthday!) and Global Fision M.

7:28 a.m. ET: Now Austin has a drive-by at the brush coming out of the Leaf Pit. He, much like Zara earlier, came in quite bold to the brush oxer and just couldn’t get Colorado Blue’s eye on the next question. Austin has opted to retire now, not much point to continue on without hope of competing — this horse certainly doesn’t need the extra mileage at this point.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:27 a.m. ET: Austin O’Connor has to pony club kick “Salty” with his left leg to make the line to the big corner at Defender Valley, and they look to be getting into their stride as they carry on.

7:25 a.m. ET: RATS – Pencos Crown Jewel just catches a leg at the second of the pinned arrowheads at the Dairy Mound and sends Ros out the left-hand door. What a disappointing ending — highs and lows, man.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:24 a.m. ET: Now here’s a pair I’ve been waiting to see: Ireland’s Austin O’Connor and the elite Colorado Blue.

7:22 a.m. ET: Oh no! Our latest starter, Christoph Forsberg, comes in a bit hot to Defender Valley’s upright rails and very nearly makes the save but can’t quite make it work and takes a tumble. He looks to be absolutely fine, though he’ll be salty about that early ending, to say the least.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:20 a.m. ET: Ros is nicely through the Trout Hatchery with Pencos Crown Jewel.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:18 a.m. ET: “I rode rubbish to a single fence and ended up having a rail at the pinned oxer. It was completely only my fault, but on the hard fences he was phenomenal — he was super,” Emily King says in the vet box. She notes that she dropped her whip at the MIM oxer and also felt her girth move up with the rub, so she contemplated pulling up until she heard some encouragement from the crowd. “I heard someone in the ground say “you’re doing a great job!”

7:16 a.m. ET: Greta Mason is still managing a very keen Cooley For Sure as they navigate the Dairy Mound at 20. Another one who’s struggled to get the control, but who also looks quite fit for the task.

7:14 a.m. ET: Here we goooooo – your reigning European Champion is underway with a horse that poses a serious threat this weekend: Ponchos Crown Jewel.

7:13 a.m. ET: Boyd’s 15 penalties for missing a flag have been removed, leaving him with just 10.8 time added aboard On Cue. That puts them onto a two-phase score of 42.6.

7:12 a.m. ET: Emily is home a little over 60 seconds past time and with that broken MIM and a missed flag at the Joules at the Maltings.

7:11 a.m. ET: Nicky Hill and MGH Bingo Boy are our latest starters. Emily King and Valmy Biats are at the Lions Bridge at 26/27.

7:08 a.m. ET: Emily and Valmy Biats seem to be no worse for the wear from their broken pin and are jumping well and on their way to Cottesmore Leap. Greta Mason had a drive-by at the Defender Valley early on at 5 with Cooley For Sure.

7:07 a.m. ET From an elated Alex Bragg: “I don’t know that any horse is going to finish as strong as that!”

7:06 a.m. ET: Yikes, Emily King and Valmy Biats break the pin quite hard at the Waterloo Rails at 12. They’ve continued on and look to be ok thus far.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:05 a.m. ET: Zara is retiring just before the Cottesmore Leap, the same place where Oliver pulled up earlier. She’s been having to really encourage Class Affair and likely has decided it’s not going to be worthwhile to push for a finish.

7:02 a.m. ET: Alex and Quindiva are going to be over the time, but the mare looks exceptionally fit coming home — what a great round for this pair. Super impressive so far – a testament to the fitness of these horses we’ve seen to this point as well as the intelligent course design on the part of Derek. We’ll see if the time proves to be catchable for more pairs, but so far we’re seeing horses looking well as they finish which is the top priority.

GIF via Burghley TV.

7:01 a.m. ET: Class Affair knocks the bounces coming into the water at the Trout Hatchery and Zara is really needing to ride this gelding in the earlier going.

6:59 a.m. ET: Quindiva is still looking really well in herself as she navigates the Irish Horse Bank at 17, on Winners’ Avenue. Emily King now leaves the box in her first Burghley with Valmy Biats.

6:58 a.m. ET: Oh gosh, Zara Tindall just loses her center after a big distance at the brush oxer coming out of the Leaf Pit and then cannot make the line to the brush work. That’ll be a disappointing and unlucky 20 for this pair.

6:57 a.m. ET: Harry Mutch brings home Shanbeg Cooley with the 20 penalties at the Leaf Pit and about 40 seconds of time.

6:56 a.m. ET: From Boyd: “She’s a legend horse. About halfway around she really felt that hill going up to the Trout Hatchery and I sort of thought to myself if I push her any faster she might be out of petrol by the end. I just love her to bits and got her home a bit over the time.”

6:55 a.m. ET: Zara Tindall is now away with the experienced Class Affair.

6:51 a.m. ET: Boyd has a missed flag penalty from the Joules at the Maltings — I don’t think I saw that combination so not sure what it looked like. He brings Cue home about 30 seconds over the time, and she looked quite well within herself galloping home. We’ll see what happens with the flag.

She’s 17 years young! GIF via Burghley TV.

6:50 a.m. ET: Alex Bragg now joins us with the mare Quindiva.

6:48 a.m. ET: Boyd sails over the Cottesmore Leap at 18. He loses his balance a bit at the Fairfax and Favor Keepers but keeps himself in the tack. Cue kicks out the red flag at the second MIM-pinned arrowhead at the Dairy Mound but she’s clear through.

GIF via Burghley TV.

6:47 a.m. ET: Tom brings Luna Mist home 47 seconds over with this first-timer — a really nice first round for this mare. I will be keen to see her develop with this big experience under her belt. Harry has picked up a 20 at the Leaf Pit, with the 9-year-old Shanbeg Cooley just getting a bit of an extra peek at the big drop. Listen, I would need a second too, I get it.

6:46 a.m. ET: Harry Mutch now joins us with his first of two rides today, Shanbeg Cooley. Luna Mist is boldly through the Lions Bridge on her way home.

6:44 a.m. ET: A really nice trip through the Trout Hatchery for Boyd.

GIF via Burghley TV.

6:43 a.m. ET: Boyd and Cue are neatly through the Defender Valley at 8 as David Doel finishes inside the time by a whopping 14 seconds. Jonelle notes that she felt many people would catch the time today. Boyd chooses the left handed option through the Leaf Pit.

6:40 a.m. Luna Mist has a HUGE jump through the bounces at the Trout Hatchery, just showing her greenness a bit — but hey, she’s enthusiastic! Tom’s task will be to keep her energy contained to save it, and also to keep her confidence up. Boyd is away!

6:39 a.m. ET: Next out will be our first U.S. pair, Boyd Martin and Maryland 5 Star winner On Cue. Let’s goooooooo! Enjoy Boyd’s hype video to get you amped:

6:38 a.m. ET: Tom McEwen navigates the Leaf Pit and takes the left-handed corner option with this greener horse, who’s quite keen and impressed by the crowds in this early going.

6:36 a.m. ET: Wills is inside the time! 11 minutes, 2 seconds — what a class round. This is one of the toughest courses in terms of terrain and stamina demand, and this horse set an example of fitness today. Also, I’m a big fan of how these bounces at the Trout Hatchery ride (as demonstrated by David Doel):

GIF via Burghley TV.

6:35 a.m. ET: Both Wills and David are having absolute cracking rounds so far, with their horses looking really fit and within themselves at this point. We now see Tokyo Olympian Tom McEwen on course with Luna Mist, a 10-year-old 5* debutant who’s also a newer ride for him.

6:30 a.m. ET: “I think everything was sort of as expected. I think he was a good yardstick for everyone to watch and get a good indication of the course,” Harry says of Away Cruising. We’re also joined now by David Doel and Galileo Nieuwmoed.

6:29 a.m. ET: We now are joined by Wills Oaken and Oughterard Cooley, who have finished as well as 12th here at Burghley. Also, some unfortunate news for Oliver as it looks like his left rein has snapped with no hope of getting it back, forcing his retirement just before the Cottesmore Leap at 18.

6:28 a.m. ET: Harry and Away Cruising are home! They will pick up about a minute of time plus those 15 penalties for the missed flag.

6:26 a.m. ET: Harry and Away Cruising jump the widest part of the corner at Capability’s Cutting and has to come back around for the option. He also opts for the option at the Lions Bridge at 26/27.

GIF via Burghley TV.

6:24 a.m. ET: Harry Meade is riding Away Cruising strongly as they get to the back third of the track, having done quite a bit of uphill climbing to this point. Away Cruising is a bit tired, but he is responding well to Harry’s aids. Tregilder is clear through the Trout Hatchery water.

6:23 a.m. ET: Oliver kicks out the white flag at the corner out of the Leaf Pit as Harry sails over the Cottesmore Leap at 18.

GIF via Burghley TV.

6:21 a.m. ET: Harry is clear at the Joules at the Maltings — a notoriously huge combination that requires a brave, attacking stride to make the distances work.

6:19 a.m. ET: Jonelle notes that she feels the Trout Hatchery (11 and 12) is “a bit of a let-up” this year. The bounce into the water rides quite well for Harry and Away Cruising. Meanwhile, Oliver Townend is away with his first of three rides, Tregilder.

6:15 a.m. ET: And that whistle means we’re away! Harry Meade and Away Cruising are away, and we’re treated to commentary from Tina Cook and Jonelle Price to kick us off. This is Away Cruising’s eight appearance at this level, and he’ll be looking to be a competitive pathfinder for Harry today.

5 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments