Japans Kazuma Tomoto has kept his position at the top of Blenheim’s CIC3* for eight- and nine-year-old ahead of the final phase.

Kazuma and Brookpark Vikenti showjumped clear to remain on their leading score of 40.7. They have been drawn to go across country at 11.10am today (Sunday).

A total of 27 out of the 77 starters go forward to today’s cross-country on their dressage mark and the fierce competition meant that poles were highly costly.

Christopher Burton and Cooley Lands also jumped clear to hold onto second place. However, two fences for Francis Whittington and Nimrod II – who were in joint-second overnight – has dropped them down the order to 16th.

A clear round from Holly Woodhead and Parkfield Quintessential has moved them up a place from fourth to third and they will start the cross-country as the leading British combination in this class.

Fault-free performances from Vittoria Panizzon (One Night Love), Francis Whittington (Carlchen) and Emily Llewellyn (Emirati Night Sky) moves all three combinations into the top-10.

Tim Price has been drawn first to go with Cooley Showtime at 10am, while defending title-holder Willa Newton and Caja 20 will start at 11.45am.

While the ground held up well on the cross-country for the CCI3* and Event Rider Masters series yesterday (Saturday), there has been heavy rain overnight.

A former international showjumper, Kazuma is in just his second season as an event rider.

He is based with William Fox-Pitt and is campaigning three horses this season, including Brookpark Vikenti.

The nine-year-old gelding, by Master Imp, was previously partnered by Ireland’s Michael Ryan up to CCI2* level.

Kazuma took on the ride in 2016 and the pair finished fifth in the CIC2* at both Burnham Market and Barbury earlier this year.

Kazuma’s main aim is to qualify for the 2018 World Equestrian Games and has the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in his sights.

Don’t miss this week’s issue of Horse & Hound – out Thursday, 21 September – for a full report from the SsangYong Blenheim International Horse Trials