Phoenix Rising? Canadian Rider In Front After Day One Of Rolex
The first day of dressage at the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event is in the books and WUKY’s Samantha Lederman has this report.
Thursday’s windy conditions were certainly not ideal, flapping flags and tents and spooking the horses, but the eventual leader at the halfway stage of the first phase, Canadian Jessie Phoenix is vastly experienced at this level and it showed. She rode a calm and relaxed test on Don Good’s Pavarotti into first place, just ahead of last year’s National Champion Lauren Kieffer on Mrs Jacqueline Mars’ Vermiculus.
Vermiculus is an anglo-arab that Kieffer has ridden since he was a 3 year old and a full brother to her very first event horse, and the first horse she ever rode around the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event.
Lying third after making two expensive mistakes is Frenchman Maxime Livio on Qualao Des Mers.
The scoreboard is expected to change by Friday evening with some heavy hitters still to come in the dressage phase, and then the real crux of the competition takes place on Saturday.
All the riders agree that the cross country this year looks especially tough, and with the forecast being hot and humid the weather will likely be a factor as well.
Dressage continues Friday. Cross country starts at 10am Saturday, and the competition will be decided on Sunday in the main arena over the stadium fences.