It was an interesting day on the cross-country course. While some pairs made light work of the course – for instance, Chris Burton with HP Leilani who stormed home well under the optimum time – others racked up the time faults, stops and there were even quite a few falls.  As a result, there was definitely mouvement among the top placed horses.

The Top 10 after XC are:

=1 33 Germany KLIMKE Ingrid BUTTS ABRAXXAS 39.30 +
=1 41 Sweden ALGOTSSON OSTHOLT Sara WEGA 39.30 +
3 74 New Zealand TODD Mark CAMPINO 39.50 +
4 65 Germany JUNG Michael SAM 40.60 +
5 56 Great Britain COOK Kristina MINERS FROLIC 42.00 +
6 24 Great Britain KING Mary IMPERIAL CAVALIER 42.10 +
7 25 Sweden SVENNERSTAL Ludvig SHAMWARI 44.10 +
8 49 Germany AUFFARTH Sandra OPGUN LOUVO 44.80 +
9 58 New Zealand NICHOLSON Andrew NEREO 45.00 +
=10 2 Australia BURTON Christopher HP LEILANI 46.10 +
=10 40 Great Britain PHILLIPS Zara HIGH KINGDOM 46.10 +

Now, I’m a bit short on time since watching the show jumping tomorrow will require an early wake-up call. That said, I wanted to take a look at the Top 10 and their respective show jumping records.

Though, the gold medal is Ingrid Klimke’s to lose, she has a long way to go. “Butts” is not known for his carefulness when jumping the coloured poles. Last year at the European Championships, this pair racked up 24 jumping faults. While that was an all-time high, I unfortunately suspect that Ingrid will have a number of rails tomorrow and will ultimately fall out of medal contention.

On the other hand, Wega has a fairly good show jump record. Campino does as well. I don’t know if they can manage two clean rounds, but 1-2 rails each over the two rounds would not surprise me. That said, Mark Todd has been able to perform some impressive feats this weekend.

Mary King signing autographs yesterday

Michael Jung and Sam are lurking back in 4th, and are more than capable of jumping two clear rounds. I think just about anyone would agree that Jung has a pretty good shot at gold.

While Miners Frolic often has 1-2 rails, Imperial Cavalier and Mary are capable of jumping two clear rounds and will take advantage of any mistakes made by Jung. Personally, I’m a huge admirer of Mary King’s and can’t help but hope she picks up an individual medal – ideally gold!

While I suspect Ludvig and Shamwari will fall down the ranking with a handful of rails based on their FEI record, Opgun Louvo may well jump well enough to earn Sandra Auffarth a medal depending on how the others fair.

Andrew Nicholson, Chris Burton and Zara Phillips are all within two rails of the current leader, and could put in two good rounds, especially Nereo who has historically jumped well at CCIs.

Since I’ve been no stranger this week to guessing the outcome of each phase based on little else than a perusal of the FEI records, I’ll venture the following guess for gold…Mary King.

Calina