A total of 67 horses are expected to start the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials tomorrow (Thursday 4 September) after one horse was not presented and one failed the first horse inspection (trot-up).
Unfortunately Emily Galbraith’s event came to an end at the very first hurdle when the ground jury (Nick Burton, Anne-Mette Binder and Eric Lieby) sent her ride Timing (pictured top) to the holding box and then did not accept him on re-presentation. Matthew Wright’s Caunton Welldone did not come forward.
A further 3 horses were held before being accepted: Mark Todd’s Ravenstar, Wills Goodhew’s More Luck and Matthew Heath’s The Lion.
The busiest rider during the trot-up was definitely Andrew Nicholson. In addition to his 3 rides — Calico Joe, Nereo and Avebury (pictured right), who all passed first time — Andrew also trotted up Ravenstar and Oloa for Mark, who was stuck in traffic. As Ravenstar had to be represented, this meant Andrew got more than his fair share of time on the runway. He quipped to the ground jury: “As if I don’t already have enough to do!”
There was a nasty moment for Piggy French when Westwood Mariner responded to the crowd’s applause and knocked her over after he had been accepted. She was quickly back on her feet with no obvious harm done.
While all the horses look fabulous in the beautiful autumn sunshine, there were some antics to entertain the crowd, as well as a range of outfits ranging from country chic to funky fashion.
Joy Dawes’ Harbour Pilot nearly towed his handler straight into the marker at the end of the trot-up strip, while Nicola Wilson had assistance on hand to help catch and anchor Opposition Buzz as he completed his inspection.
The only stallion in the field, Kai Ruder’s Leprince Des Bois (pictured above), repeatedly demonstrated airs above the ground that would have been more suited to the Spanish Riding School.
While white jeans remain a popular choice among female riders, Dee Kennedy gave them a twist by wearing a pair of white jean shorts with knee high boots (pictured below). And a few riders bucked the white trend with pale green, purple and pink jeans being spotted. The beautiful weather also brought out a few summer dresses.
Follow tomorrow’s dressage action as it happens with H&H Live, our interactive written commentary service, with expert analysis from dressage rider and trainer Anna Ross Davies. The first rider is in the arena at 9.30am tomorrow (Thursday 5 September).