Lucinda Fredericks is in pole position after dressage in the German CCI**** at Luhm ¼hlen.
Riding Donald Reid’s German-bred 10-year-old Flying Finish, Lucinda put in a smooth, elegant test to score 31.8.
“Dressage is usually a strong point for me and I was hoping to do a very good test,” said Lucinda (pictured). “This horse is still weak – he’s only started eventing two years ago, he’s tall and narrow and has a lot of growing and strengthening to do. But he’s got a wonderful attitude and a very trainable temperament.”
Lucinda predicted that the home side’s European and world champion Michael Jung would usurp her when he did his test later in the afternoon on Anke Hoyer’s Leopin FST. But the 13-year-old was slightly nervous in the arena and did not produce such good work as in the warm-up. Nevertheless, he lies second on 32.8.
Michael also leads the CIC*** having recorded a personal best score of 27.8 on Wiedezaunprofis River Of Joy yesterday. Most of the leading Germans have their best horses in this class – though Michael still has star La Biosthetique-Sam FBW tucked away – and the German shortlist for the Olympics will be announced after Luhm ¼hlen.
Andrew Nicholson has three rides in the CCI**** and he saved the best til last, slotting into third with the final horse of the day, Robin and Nicky Salmon’s Mr Cruise Control, the runner-up at Pau last year.
Andrew Hoy – who joins Lucinda in using this weekend to make a bid for a place on the Australian team for London – lies fourth on the smart nine-year-old Rutherglen.
“I took him to Kentucky and was disappointed with his dressage. He was very anxious in the atmosphere so here I changed the formula a little and had a ‘cold start’ – I only got on him 20 minutes before his test,” said Andrew, who has been working with British dressage star Laura Bechtolsheimer. “Here he did what I could produce for today – there’s still a lot more work to do, it’s not the finished article.”
Germany’s Andreas Dibowski – the winner here last year on Euroridings Butts Leon – is fifth with FRH Butts Avedon. Oliver Townend is best of the Brits in sixth having coaxed a relaxed test out of the former Andrew Nicholson ride Armada, owned by Paul Ridgeon. The top six riders all broke the 40-barrier, with Oliver scoring 39.5.
Recent Houghton CIC*** runners-up Charlotte Agnew and Out Of Africa Two are eighth for Britain (40.8), with Francis Whittington ninth on Easy Target (41.5).
Riders say Mark Phillips’ cross-country track will be influential. The CIC*** horses run first tomorrow, with the four-star competitors taking their turn in the afternoon.
CCI**** RESULTS AFTER DRESSAGE
1st Lucinda Fredericks on Flying Finish (AUS) 31.8
2nd Michael Jung on Leopin FST (GER) 32.8
3rd Andrew Nicholson on Mr Cruise Control (NZL) 34.7
4th Andrew Hoy on Rutherglen (AUS) 34.8
5th Andreas Dibowski on FRH Butts Avedon (GER) 35.2
6th Oliver Townend on Armada (GBR) 39.5
Picture by Peter Nixon/FEI
Log back on for more updates from Luhm ¼hlen over the weekend. Full report in H&H out next Thursday, 21 June.