Sarah Bullimore tops the leaderboard in the CCI3* after dressage at the Fidelity Blenheim Horse Trials.

She scored the only sub-40 mark of the section — 38.9pen — on her own and her husband Brett’s 9-year-old Lilly Corinne.

“We’ve always promised, but this is the first time we’ve properly delivered,” said Sarah. “She’s a proper chestnut mare, but she’s finally growing up.”

In 2nd is another 9-year-old mare, Fenyas Elegance. She and Aoife Clark scored 40pen with a punchy, accurate test.

“Ellie”, as the Ricardo Z mare is known at home, is a new ride for Aoife this year.

“I’m thrilled with her,” said the Irish rider. “She was calm and relaxed in the arena and I couldn’t have asked more of her.”

The USA’s Clark Montgomery is 3rd, leader after the first day on Loughan Glen with 42.7.

Veteran French rider Jean Teulere lies in 4th with a mark of 43.1 on Matelot Du Grand Val, while Pippa Funnell and William Fox-Pitt hold the next 2 places on Or Noir De La Loge and Running Order.

William is also 2nd in the 8/9-year-old CIC*** with Catherine Witt and Carol Gee’s Fernhill Pimms. He scored 33.1pen on the winner of the British Intermediate Championships at Gatcombe last month, but was pipped a few minutes later by Australia’s Christopher Burton and Graf Liberty, who managed 32.9pen.

“He’s come a long way because he has only just started working on this test and has found it quite difficult,” said Christopher of the 8-year-old by Limmerick.

Behind Christopher and William in 3rd is New Zealand’s Emma Dougall, who scored 35.4pen on Belcam Bear, while her countryman Andrew Nicholson is 4th on Zaron. Paul Tapner (Indian Mill) and William Fox-Pitt (Freddie Mac) take the next 2 places.

The CCI cross-country starts at 11.30am tomorrow.

Blenheim Horse Trials results after dressage

CCI***
1, Lilly Corrine (Sarah Bullimore, GBR) 38.9
2, Fenyas Elegance (Aoife Clark, IRE) 40
3, Loughan Glen (Clark Montgomery, USA) 42.7
4, Matelot Du Grand Val (Jean Teulere, FRA) 43.1
5, Or Noir De La Loge (Pippa Funnell, GBR) 43.8
6, Running Order (William Fox-Pitt, GBR) 44
7, Out Of Africa Two (Charlotte Agnew, GBR) 44.2
8, Aphrodisiac (Coral Keen, GBR) 44.4
9, Highland Ford (Richard Jones, GBR) 44.6
10, Whitson (Louise Harwood, GBR) 45

8/9-year-old CIC***
1, Graf Liberty (Christopher Burton, AUS) 32.9
2, Fernhill Pimms (William Fox-Pitt, GBR) 33.1
3, Belcam Bear (Emma Dougall, AUS) 35.4
4, Zaron (Andrew Nicholson, NZL) 35.8
5, Indian Mill (Paul Tapner, AUS) 37.7
6, Freddie Mac (William Fox-Pitt, GBR) 37.9
7, Cooley Master Class (Oliver Townend, GBR) 38.9
8, Amazing VIII (Flora Harris, GBR) 39.8
9, Leonidas II (Mark Todd, NZL) 40
10, Billy Bounce (Chris King, GBR) 40.6

Stay in touch with the action from Blenheim Horse Trials on Horseandhound.co.uk across the weekend and read H&H’s full report in the magazine on Thursday 19 September