Preview the Mitsubishi Motors Australian International CCI5* Cross Country with Mike Etherington-Smith

The Mitsubishi Motors Australian International Three Day Event is well underway as the final CCI5* of the 2019 season, and it’s Emma Bishop with CP Issey Miyake leading the way on a dressage penalty mark of 30.3. Emma and CP Issey Miyake, an 11-year-old mare, finished in seventh in this event last year and have shaved 1.5 points off their score.

The pressure is on for tomorrow’s cross country, however, as second-placed Hazel Shannon and Willingapark Clifford are aiming to become the fifth horse in history to win three CCI5* events at the same venue. This pair has much experience both at this venue and at the level; you may remember them from their trip to the States for the 2019 Land Rover Kentucky Three Day, where they finished 26th. This is their fifth start in the Australian CCI5*.  Lauren Brown and Sky’s Da Limit round out the top three after dressage, sitting on a score of 31.0 in their second go at Adelaide.

If you want to take a deeper dive into the numbers, visit our friends at EquiRatings, who’ve been hard at work on an exciting new project, the EquiRatings Prediction Centre. You can check out our preview of the CCI5* division here.

Graphic via EquiRatings.

Cross country day at the Australian International CCI5* has a unique feel to it due to the fact that the course winds its way through the middle of Adelaide’s East City Parklands, crossing roads and getting up close and personal with city dwellers stopping by to spectate.

A satellite view showing the unique location of the Australian International Three Day. Screenshot via CrossCountryApp.

Take a look at the main road that riders will be galloping across on Saturday:

This year’s Mike Etherington-Smith course features 45 jumping efforts and an optimum time of 11 minutes 31 seconds. This year, the course’s start and finish locations have been moved, and the distance the horses and riders will travel is a bit longer than previous years. With the start and finish locations being moved this year, Mike’s put some more technical questions in the arena where previously just the first and final fences were placed.

One of the tricker questions on the course at fence 14ABC, the 7 Network Stag Corner.

Mike starts riders off with three typical rhythm fences and kicks things into high gear rather quickly at fence 4AB, a pair of upright gates set on two strides. The first third of the course is fairly flat, Mike comments during his course narration, setting riders up to manage their pace early on. With several thoughtfully placed let-up fences mixed with technical questions that, when combined with the buzz of the crowd around features such as the water jumps, will make for a great challenge for the pairs coming forward.

The main water jump, fence 16AB. Photo via Cross Country App.

All three phases of the CCI5* at Australian International will be live streamed on the Equestrian Life Facebook page, so be sure to give them a “like” so you can follow along with the action. For anyone unable to watch live, replays will also be available on Equestrian Life’s Facebook here. The CCI5* cross country will begin at 12:45 pm local time Saturday/9:15 pm ET this evening. The rest of the live stream schedule is as follows:

Friday, November 15 – 12:30pm local/9:00 pm ET (Thursday) – CCI5* Dressage

Saturday, November 16 – 12:45 pm local/9:15 pm ET (Friday) – CCI5* Cross Country

Sunday November 17 – 1:00 pm local/9:30 pm ET (Saturday) – World Cup Show jumping and presentations AND 3:00 pm local/11:30 pm ET – CCI5* Show Jumping

To view the fence-by-fence analysis with Mike Etherington-Smith, check out the full preview on

You can also view a flyover of the entire course here:

Australian International Three-Day Event: WebsiteEntriesScheduleRide TimesLive Scores