Ruth Edge (pictured) holds top spot after dressage at Blenheim Horse Trials after taking the lead late this afternoon.
Ruth scored 30.2 with British open winner Mayhem III, who seemed unaffected by the mud in the arena.
“He didn’t notice the mud, although it’s a while since I’ve ridden in those conditions,” said Ruth, who also led the first phase at Burghley last week, but went earlier in the order there before the worst rain came.
“You have to support the horses a bit more when it’s like that and use more leg to help them keep the rhythm and power. The only movement I didn’t really go for was the extended trot — when the centre line is covered in mud you don’t want them to miss a stride and end up with a four.”
Blenheim first-timer Laura Collett, 19, slipped into second place with her 2006 junior European champion Fernhill Sox, scoring 36.9.
William Fox-Pitt lies third and was delighted to receive a mark of 37.1 for Bramham winner Navigator’s “best test ever”. His only mistakes were small skips in both his flying changes.
RESULTS AT THE END OF DRESSAGE
1. Mayhem III (Ruth Edge, GB) 30.2
2. Fernhill Sox (Laura Collett, GB) 36.9
3. Navigator (William Fox-Pitt, GB) 37.1
4=. Ballynoe Castle RM (Buck Davidson, USA) 39
4=. Avebury (Andrew Nicholson, NZL) 39
6. Arthur (Allison Springer, USA) 40.4
Keep logging onto www.horseandhound.co.uk for daily reports from Blenheim, and don’t forget to buy next week’s H&H (18 September) for a six-page report from the event, including Mark Phillips’s comment.