Flora Harris has retained the lead in the CCI3* at the Equi-Trek Bramham Horse Trials after the cross-country.

Flora, riding her mother Caroline and Rebecca Salt’s Bayano, was one of 13 riders in the senior class who finished inside the 10min 8sec optimum time over Ian Stark’s course.

“I’m so proud of him — he started well through to two-thirds of the way round, then he tired a bit in the last couple of minutes, but he was really good,” said Flora (video interview above).

Flora Harris and Bayano at Bramham 2015. Picture by Peter Nixon

Flora Harris and Bayano at Bramham 2015. Picture by Peter Nixon

William Fox-Pitt was also fault-free to stay second with Carol Gee and Catherine Witt’s Fernhill Pimms.

“He’s been on very good form this year and went as well as I could have hoped,” said William. “He was very straight and make the time easily.”

Kitty King added two time-faults with Frank and Jane Inns’ Persimmon, but now holds third outright, having been equal third after dressage with Pippa Funnell. Pippa piloted her own, her mother Jenny Nolan’s and Ruth McMullen’s Sandman 7 round with 4.8 time-penalties to drop to sixth.

“I’m thrilled with how he went — he didn’t finish tired at all and galloped home as quickly as he goes up the gallops doing his fittening work,” said Kitty.

The main casualty from the top ranks was New Zealand’s Jock Paget, who was fifth after dressage, but fell when Shady Grey left his front legs on the upright rail (12b) out of the first Kidney Pond.

France’s Gwendolen Fer had a clear in the time with Romantic Love, which moved her up from seventh to fourth, the only non-British rider in the top six. Jodie Amos finished two seconds over the time on Wise Crack to rise a place to fifth.

Bishop Burton College under-25 CCI3*

Holly Woodhead also kept her top spot in the under-25 class, finishing one second under the optimum with DHI Lupison. The horse is registered to her father Ian and stepmother Heidi, but belonged to her grandfather Alan, who passed away just last Sunday.

“I had a few hairy moments, but overall I had a super ride and really enjoyed it,” she said. “It’s a first CCI3* for both of us so it was like the blind leading the blind really, but he did everything I asked him and helped me out a few times.”

There were just two penalty-free rounds in this class and the other came from Emily King, who moved up from fifth to third with Brookleigh.

“I had my minute markers and was aware of where I was — I knew I was just up on the time at each marker which was nice, then after the last water I motored on,” she said.

Dani Evans stopped the clock two seconds over the time on second ride Smart Time, to rise from fourth to second, while her first mount, Raphael II, had four time-faults to drop a place to fourth.

“My horses are very different, but they were both so genuine and I feel lucky to have two horses going clear here,” she said.

Millie Dumas, second after dressge, slipped to eighth on account of 9.6 time-penalties with Artistiek.

Check back later and tomorrow for more updates from Bramham. Full report in H&H this week, out Thursday 18 June.