The third day of competition at the World Equestrian Games at Tryon concluded with two Irish eventers sitting pretty inside the top 10 while Judy Reynolds has booked her ticket to go where no Irish rider has gone before – to the Kür (Freestyle to Music) at a world championship.
Sarah Ennis lies in 6th place after the completion of the eventing dressage phase tonight with Padraig McCarthy just three places back in a share of 9th. McCarthy had kicked off the second day of dressage with a score of of 27.2 on Mr Chunky after which Ennis scored 26.3 on Horseware Stellor Rebound.
In between, Patricia Ryan, competing as a non-team rider, got a mark of 30.8 on Dunrath Eclipse to leave her in 38th place.
As a result the Irish team improved five notches overnight to seventh place on a score of 87.5. Germany lead with a WEG record score of 73.3 with Great Britain second with 80.8 and USA holding the bronze position at 83.0.
In dressage Judy Reynolds was early into the action with Vancouver K in the Grand Prix Special and notched 73.982% which proved good enough to nab 15th place and qualify her for the Freestyle on Sunday.
It will be the first time an Irish rider has made the Freestyle at the World Equestrian Games.
Germany’s Isabell Werth took gold in the Special with Bella Rose, scoring 86.246% with American Laura Graves and Verdades taking silver with 81.717% while the bronze medal was claimed by Charlotte Dujardin for Great Britain on Mount St. John Freestyle with 81.489%.
Irish interest tomorrow centres on the eventing cross-country phase in which Sam Watson will be first to go for Ireland on Horseware Ardagh Highlight. The phase gets underway at 4pm Irish time though there are concerns that the weather may affect the event.