Andrew Nicholson, who has never won a Mitsubishi Motors Badminton title, will go into tomorrow’s cross-country phase in the lead
Andrew Nicholson Interview
William Fox Pitt Interview
Andrew Nicholson, who has never won a Mitsubishi Motors Badminton title, will go into tomorrow’s cross-country phase in the lead with Deborah Sellar’s Nereo.
Despite some strong challenges from a legion of dressage protagonists today, no one managed to top the New Zealander’s score from yesterday of 37.8.
“I’m a little bit surprised to still be in the lead, but Nereo felt very smart in there, so I knew that if I was to be overtaken they wouldn’t be very far in front,” said Andrew.
Many peoples’ fancy for this year’s title, William Fox-Pitt and Christopher and Lisa Stone’s stallion Chilli Morning, sit handily in second place after the dressage on 39. Two blundered flying changes marred an otherwise excellent test, but William was still pleased with Chilli’s performance.
“It wasn’t his best test today,” admitted William. “Maybe a bit of tension crept in, and at this level you can’t afford three mistakes.”
Oliver Townend squeezed every possible mark out of Paul Ridgeon’s grand old campaigner, Armada, to score the third and final sub-40 mark – 39.6 and occupy third spot at this stage.
Incredibly, Armada is a full-brother to Andrew’s horse, Nereo. They are both Spanish-bred by the stallion Fines.
“Everyone knows what Armada can do in the dressage and today was probably the first time he’s come to Badminton and done a mistake-free test,” said Oliver.
Ingrid Klimke is currently in fourth place for Germany with Horseware Hale Bob on a score of 40.2, while New Zealander Jock Paget occupies fifth and sixth places with Clifton Lush and Clifton Promise respectively.
Tomorrow’s cross-country action starts at 11.30am, when the first out on the course will be Paul Tapner and Kilronan.
To view the full results, click here
For more rider quotes on the dressage, click here
For riders’ thoughts on the cross-country, click here