Riding her 16-year-old 2007 Luhmühlen winner Two Thyme, Ruth scored 38.3 with a test which was only marred by a slight lack of concentration in the rein-back.
“Something took his eye slightly in the rein-back,” said Ruth. “But a lot of his trotwork was better than at Badminton [where he was second after dressage this year], he did good shoulder-in and half-pass, he liked the going and did good extensions. He was also really good in the canter, apart from the third change, which was my fault. He can be a bit sharp off the leg and I just sat too quiet.”
Caroline Powell was the first rider to break the 40 barrier today, scoring 38.7 on the 17-year-old Lenamore. The grey was on his best behaviour after being naughty at Blair last week, and he performed a smooth, mistake-free test to score in the 30s for the first time ever at this level.
“I walked straight from the stables to the arena, which took 16min, and didn’t work him at all,” said Caroline. “He was a joy to ride and I can’t believe I’m saying that.”
Last year’s winning pair, Oliver Townend and Carousel Quest, lie third.
“He’s not the most flamboyant horse in his trot, but his canter makes up for it,” said Oliver. “Everyone knows he’s a fragile horse and it’s an achievement for the team at home that he won last year and to get him back here looking as good as he does.”
This morning’s sensation was the youngest rider of the competition, 19-year-old Swede Christoffer Forsberg, who took the lead on his grey 18-year-old young rider team horse Grafman. He lies fifth overnight, a place behind the last runner, William Fox-Pitt (Seacookie), and one ahead of Thursday’s leader Mary King (Apache Sauce).
Ruth said of the cross-country course: “The going is second to none and it gives the horses every chance, but the jumps don’t get any smaller. It’s certainly four-star, every jump is huge and there are lots of places to make mistakes.”
There was good news for the sport at Burghley today, with Anthony Bradbury, marketing director of Land Rover UK, announcing that the company is extending its title sponsorship to 2013.
Don’t forget to buy H&H next week for a full 10-page report from Burghley, including comment from cross-country designer Mark Phillips.
Replay H&H’s live coverage of the dressage with comment on every test from 2007 British dressage team member Anna Ross Davies.
RESULTS AFTER DRESSAGE
1.Ruth Edge on Two Thyme (GB) 38.3
2.Caroline Powell on Lenamore (NZL) 38.7
3.Oliver Townend on Carousel Quest (GB) 39.2
4.William Fox-Pitt on Seacookie (GB) 40.3
5.Christoffer Forsberg on Grafman (SWE) 44.3
6.Mary King on Apache Sauce (GB) 44.8