Today’s Highlights: Kristina Cook is overnight leader in Barbury CIC3* and Emily King wins first International

Emily King scored her first international win at the St James’s Place Barbury International Horse Trials, taking the two-star section D on Jane Del Missier’s 13-year-old mare Walitze F Vejgard.
Emily, 21, has not had the luckiest of seasons so far and she admitted this was something of a boost. ‘It’s nice when your luck turns,’ said Emily, 21.
‘Walitze is really good at this two-star level. She’s quite a sharp mare, has an amazing gallop and moves like a dressage horse.’ Excitingly, Walitze has had two embryo transfers in the past few weeks.

• There were more celebrations when Emily’s boyfriend, Sam Ecroyd, captured section E on The Quiet Man, an eight-year-old by Quiet Edition. Sam has had the gelding since he was purchased as a three-year-old at Brightwell’s sale at Addington. ‘This is the best he’s ever felt – he just cruised round,’ said Sam.

• American rider Elisabeth Halliday-Sharp won section C on the Dutch-bred Deniro Z. She bought the nine-year-old from Sussex-based rider Francis Whittington as a horse to sell, but is now excited by Deniro’s potential and has managed to get a syndicate together to buy the nine-year-old.
Only a handful of riders achieved the optimum time over Mark Phillips’s fair but imposing course and Elisabeth was the only one in her section. ‘I think he’s a real four-star horse,’ Elisabeth said. ‘He gallops and is brave. The cross-country course rode really nicely, but you have to commit to get the time.’

Three Star feature events culminate tomorrow

Barbury is one of the best viewing courses in the country and the scene is set for some thrilling three-star cross-country action, which starts at 11.30am. Kristina Cook, a veteran of British teams for more than 25 years, leads section B on Billy the Red, just 0.3 of a penalty ahead of her old team mate William Fox-Pitt, who has taken over the ride on Clifton Signature from New Zealander Jock Paget.

Frenchman Thomas Carlisle set the third leg of the Event Rider Masters series alight with a beautiful dressage test on the grey stallion Upsilon to score 30.8. He is 4.1 penalties ahead of the Barbury maestro, five-time winner here Andrew Nicholson on his Badminton victor Nereo. Barbury’s final day starts at 9.30am with the ERM showjumping, followed by fast and furious cross country action for what should be a fantastic day’s sport.

Click here for full results of all the Barbury eventing classes.

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