Second day gets underway at Blenheim

Sarah Carless reports…
The second day of dressage has gotten underway at the Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials.
In the CCI3*, Sam Jennings and Coleplay were first into the arena at 8.30am. The lead is currently held by Germany’s Sandra Auffarth – part of the team who won team Gold at the Longines FEI European Eventing Championships at Blair Castle and individual Silver medalist, with Ipso on a score of 37.2. Sandra took the ride on the 11 year old owned by Sybille Winter and the DOKR a year ago.
After her test yesterday, Sandra commented: “I’m really pleased, it was the best dressage I have ever done with him. He is getting better and better on the flat as he gets stronger. I haven’t got too much experience with this horse but I am very about the cross country course. I like the course, it’s enough to jump but he is a really good jumper so I’m looking forward to it. It’s my first time at Blenheim and I am really impressed with the park – I made the right decision to stay longer in England.”
But there are still plenty of quality riders to perform their dressage in this class – which has 101 entries, including Sarah Bullimore, Pippa Funnell, Piggy French, New Zealand’s Tim Price and Australia’s Andrew Hoy and Bill Levett. The dressage will finish this afternoon with Kate Chadderton from the USA on VS McCuan Liberty.
In the CIC3* for eight and nine year olds, last year’s winner of the class Jonelle Price has a commanding lead of 7.4 penalties on Cloud Dancer II. She commented: He’s smart, he moves well, especially for an event horse so I feel a bit of a responsibility to produce something a bit special, He’s no Ferrari acorss the country but he gives it his best – a few seconds in hand would be really handy.”
The first into the arena this morning at 9.00am will be Izzy Taylor on Briarlands Birdsong. Other riders still to bring their young horses forward include Oliver Townend, Kristina Cook, Harry Meade and Christopher Burton. The last to go in the dressage will be Ireland’s Geoff Curran and River Derg.
Top 10 standings CCI3*
1. Sandra Auffarth, Ipso (GER), 37.2
2.Dani Evans, Raphael II, 40.2
3.Franky Reid Warrilow, Dolley Whisper, 40.6
4.Piggy French, Obos Cooley, 41.9
5.Christopher Burton, Nobilis 18 (AUS), 42.0
6. William Fox-Pitt, Cool Mountain, 43.3
7. Tom McEwan, Hunter Valey II,43.9
8. Kitty King, Ceylor Lan, 44.4
9. Elsabeth Halliday-Sharp, Fernhill By Night (USA), 45.9
10=. Aofie Clark, FernhillAdventure (IRE), 46.2
10=. Lauren Kieffer, Veronica (USA), 46.2
Top 10 standings CIC3* 8/9 Year Old 
1. Jonelle Price, Cloud Dance II (NZL), 33.2
2. Alex Hua Tian, Don Geniro (CHN), 40.6
3. Jonty Evans, Cooley Rorkes Drift (IRE), 43.8
4. Sidney Dufresne, Tresor Mail (FRA). 44.1
5. Fraser Duffy, Fernhill Revalation (IRE), 44.6
6. Francis Whittington, Cavalier Venture, 44.9
7=. Lauren Kieffer, Landmarks Monte Carlo (USA), 46.7
7=. Pippa Funnell, Majas Hope, 46.7
9=. Emily King, Charlemagne, 47.5
9=. Caroline Powell, Stellor Seaurchin (NZL), 47.5

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