Teenager Harriet Wright, 18, beat a host of far more experienced riders to take the CIC3* at the Blair Castle Equi-Trek International Horse Trials today (26 August).

Her ride was her own Ngong Hills, the ex-Nicola Wilson horse she has been riding for two seasons.

“I’m very surprised and didn’t know what to do when I heard. All I could do was cry, I think ‘Arthur’ shed a tear as well,” said Harriet, who was riding in only her second CIC3*.

“Hartpury was more of a galloping cross-country, while this was more technical. The ground was quite deep in places, although ok in others. My round went better than I expected — I kept saying all I wanted was a clear, but after the last water I thought I’d push on a bit.”

Harriet was third after dressage, dropped to fifth with a showjump down and two time-faults and moved back up with the fastest cross-country round (16.8 time-faults).

Dressage leader Matt Heath jumped a double clear today, but added 27.6 time-faults to drop to second with Hazel Livesey’s Cooley Lord Lux.

“He gave me everything — the ground was energy-sapping and even when he got tired he never lost his jump,” said Matt. “Blair is probably my favourite event. It’s a long drive, but when you get here you feel it’s worth it.”

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Olivia Wilmot moved up from 11th after the first two phases to take third with a speedy round on the experienced Cool Dancer, who belongs to his rider, her mother Carolyn Haddow and Liz Knowle.

“I thought the course was gigantic, but it might be because it’s the first one I’ve walked this year. But it rode well and suited my horse and he just kept jumping.”

Oliver Townend was second after showjumping on Ridire Dorcha, but he slipped out to the right at the second triple brush arrowhead at the Land Rover complex (fences 15 and 16ab).

Full report from Blair in H&H next week (issue dated 31 August).