Fifty-nine pairs will move on to dressage at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event following the first horse inspection on a warm, sunny afternoon at the Kentucky Horse Park. Throngs of spectators trickled in during the jog to enjoy the festivities, giving the horses quite a colorful crowd to examine as they made their way down the strip.
The ground jury of Christina Klingspor (SWE), Nick Burton (GBR) and David Lee (IRL) sent two horses to the holding box: Colleen Rutledge’s mount Covert Rights and Jordan Linstedt’s mount RevitaVet Capato. Colleen withdrew Covert Rights from the holding box, and RevitaVet Capato was accepted after a tense wait at the very end of the horse inspection.
The horses behaved for the most part, though of course several of the athletes insisted on showing just how fighting fit they are for this first CCI4* of the season. All spectators were waiting for Parker to show his penchant for running James Alliston off the jog strip and into the decorative flowers, but this year James kept him well in hand — thanks in part to some extra tack on his head!
Bentley’s Best showed off a few airs above the ground in his inaugural trip down the Rolex jog strip with Jessica Phoenix, who is one of three riders competing three horses in the competition. Fernhill By Night played a bit on the way back down the jog strip with Liz Halliday-Sharp, showing he’s feeling ready to tackle Derek di Grazia’s cross country course.
Super Socks BCF definitely looked like he was ready to leave the start box, but Matt Brown managed to keep the lid on thanks to the crowd keeping their applause and cheers to a minumum. RevitaVet Capato also played a bit while re-presenting from the holding box, as if to convince the ground jury, “I’m ready to go!”
If you didn’t watch the jog live on USEF Network, you can relive all the action in EN’s open thread. There are also more photos over on our Instagram, and Leslie Threlkeld, our photographer extraordinaire for the week, has posted a photo gallery of every horse and rider.
Stay tuned as we wait to see which riders will receive the Dubarry Best Dressed honors at tonight’s competitor and sponsor party at Fasig-Tipton. Instead of voting for EN’s Best Dressed this year, we will be voting for Best Turned Out and honoring the grooms who work tirelessly to take such impeccable care of these amazing equine athletes.
Check back soon for the poll to vote for EN’s Best Turned Out. The groom of the winning horse will receive an Athletux backpack filled with lots of goodies and a $100 SmartPak gift card. Go Grooms!
If you’re just checking in to EN today, click here to catch up on all of our coverage so far. Click here to read EN’s team picks for the ones to watch this week, and stay tuned for our cross country course preview.
Dressage starts tomorrow at 10:10 a.m. EST with James Alliston and Parker as the first down centerline. Click here for ride times. Be sure to check EN first thing in the morning for Maggie Deatrick’s analysis on the dressage powerhouses we’ll see on day 1.
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