Day one of dressage at the Young Rider European Eventing Championships in Montelibretti, Italy (22-25 September) has not been without incident after one rider was eliminated.

Italian Paolo Mario De Simone, 21, was eliminated after his horse left the arena mid-test.

Paolo was riding 13-year-old chestnut gelding Oleg 14 in the first session of dressage this morning (22 September) when the incident occurred.

The ground jury of Jane Holderness Roddam (president, GBR), Katherine Lucheschi (ITA) and Joachim Dimmek (GER) was forced to eliminate the rider under FEI rules.

Jane Holderness-Roddam confirmed to the organising committee in Montelibretti that Paolo was eliminated under article 430, rule 7.4 — leaving the arena during a dressage test. This rule states: “A horse leaving the arena completely, with all four feet, during a dressage competition between beginning and end of the test will be eliminated.

Oleg 14 competed up to CIC3* level with Italian rider Domiziana Cardinali. Paolo took on the horse this year and together they were eighth in the CCI1* at Ravenna in April, where they scored 52.8 in the dressage.

Their next and most recent international outing was at Renswoude in June where they contested the CCI2*. Here Oleg 14 scored his worst FEI dressage score to date of 72.8.

At the end of day one of dressage in the young rider competition, Germany dominates with Flora Reemtsma in the lead and fellow German Rebecca-Juana Gerken in silver medal position. Ireland’s Elizabeth Hayden sits in fourth place at the moment with the best of the Brits, India Wishart, in sixth place. Ella Hitchman is further down the order in 23rd place.

Last night Emily King was forced to withdraw her medal hopeful Dargun after he was found to not be on top form following his trip to Italy.

The Junior European Eventing Championships, which are running concurrently with the young rider competition, has seen Britain get off to a strong start.

Phoebe Locke currently sits in fourth place while Bubby Upton is in 10th. Individual rider Chelsea Pearce is in eighth place.

A full report from the Junior and Young Rider European Eventing Championships will be in next week’s issue of Horse & Hound (29 September)