Sarah Bullimore and her home-bred 10-year-old Corouet wowed the judges in the Eventing European Championships dressage in Avenches, Switzerland. The pair performed a virtually flawless test to score 22.8, which puts them into second place with just 11 combinations left to go this afternoon.
“He was fabulous – he got a little bit tight and excited, but actually he kept it all together,” said Sarah, who is riding as an individual for the British squad. “There’s still bits that can be so much better and we didn’t really get both changes, which are normally his absolute highlight but they just weren’t quite right today – usually even when they’re bad, they’re still good with him.”
Corouet’s dam is Lily Corinne, who Sarah rode at the European Eventing Championships at Blair Castle in 2015, which makes this achievement all the more sweeter.
“He is fabulous, so I’m slightly berating myself for those mistakes in the changes, but he’s still a work in progress and there’s so much more to come from him.”
The Netherlands’ Merel Blom also put in a strong first phase performance in the Eventing European Championships dressage with The Quizmaster to score 24.4, which slots them into sixth place at this stage.
“I was expecting it to be good, although the rein-back wasn’t good for us, he always finds it quite difficult – every horse has something he finds difficult,” Merel explained afterwards. “This horse can move really well and he positions himself really well. I could feel it at the end, I thought ‘okay I’m not going to watch the numbers [on the scoreboard]’, but then I had my last medium trot and I thought it was quite good, so I think he did really well.”
The final session of dressage gets underway at 1.15pm UK time with the last rotation of team riders.
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