Britain’s vaulters will be competing for World Equestrian Games (WEG) medals on Saturday (22 September), having had a good start to their campaign.
The squad – Imogen Bexon, Ricky Davies, Romilly Hayton, Carys Morgan, Lucy Phillips, Sara Shortland and Luke Smith, with Ben Aucott’s Demezza lunged by Julie Newell, have already taken part in the first team competition round.
In their freestyle routine, the second of two competitions that make up the first round, the squad performed to a futuristic soundtrack and was unlucky to have a few mistakes for a final score of 6.936.
Julie said: “Today’s been brilliant; we’ve had a great time and it’s been fantastic to be here with all the other disciplines. It’s educated the children so much, to be able to see all the other combinations competing. It was quiet yesterday with the compulsory but today’s been really exciting, and by Saturday the atmosphere is going to be electric in there.”
As 12 teams go forward to the final, and 12 were competing, Britain will be one of the squads performing another freestyle routine on Saturday, when the marks for that test and the previous two will be used to calculate an average final score, on which the final standings will be decided.
Lucy Phillips, on Demezza lunged by Julie, and Rebecca Norval, on Edinburgh 23 lunged by Saacha de Amborossio, (pictured) have also represented Britain as individuals but finished just outside the top 15 who qualified for the next round of competition.
Lucy, who is at her fifth WEG, finished on a score of 7.054.
She said: “I had a few challenges, but I felt like I got over them; I’m happy with the score and the end result and I have really enjoyed the experience.”
Rebecca, at her first WEG, finished on 6.438.
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“I thought it went really well, but the horse was quite unsettled, so I did adapt [my routine] and change it around a bit but overall I was really happy with it,” she said.
The squad – the team and the two individuals – also took part in a separate Nations Team competition in Tryon, in which they finished in seventh place. This was won by Germany, with Switzerland in second place and Austria in third.
Horse & Hound has two journalists and a photographer in Tryon for WEG. Keep up to date with all the news on horseandhound.co.uk and in the magazine issues dated 20 and 27 September.