Clare Abbott heads the Irish challenge at Badminton after today’s cross-country phase in which she guided Euro Prince to a clear round with just 8.2 time penalties to move into 11th position.
Abbott has given herself a realistic chance of a top ten finish, though a podium place looks out of her reach as the top three now have daylight between them and the rest of the field.
It was also a good day for Joseph Murphy and Sportsfield Othello who got home with just 9.2 time penalties and are now in 18th position.
The huge Irish excitement generated by Jonty Evans’ superb start in dressage with Cooley Rorkes Drift dissipated when the pairing incurred 41.2 penalties after a run out and dropped to 25th position.
Austin O’Connor and Kilpatrick Knight are one place behind Evans after a clear round with 33.2 time penalties, and there were also clear rounds by Cathal Daniels (Rioghan Rua) and Ciaran Glynn (November Knight) who occupy 33rd and 35th respectively.
The top three places are separated by less than a penalty, with Germany’s Ingrid Klimke taking over the lead on Horseware Hale Bob Old on 39.6. Michael Jung moves up to second on 40.0 after delivering one of only two penalty-free rounds produced today with La Biosthetique Sam, while Andrew Nicholson of New Zealand holds 3rd with Nereo just 0.4 penalties behind Jung.
Tim Price is in fourth place after posting the only other penalty-free round on Xavier Faer, but the New Zealander is 7.8 penalties behind compatriot Nicholson.