New Zealand already has a winner at this year’s Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials, with Caroline Powell winning the HiHo Silver best-dressed award. Caroline, who will be riding On the Brash, teamed a powder blue tweed coat with sharp leather trousers and over-the-knee boots.
Ginny Thompson also impressed, with a navy poncho over white jeans, and a high pony tail. Her mare, Star Nouveau, looks in the peak of condition and it will be so exciting to see how these Burghley first-timers tackle Capt Mark Phillip’s track over the weekend.
Tim Price has two good chances to take his first Burghley crown; he’s riding Ringwood Sky Boy, who was fifth here last year, and Bango.
Sir Mark Todd also has two great horses entered, and would dearly love to add a sixth Burghley title to his glittering career. He is riding his London Olympics partner NZB Campino, and the less-experienced Kiltubrid Rhapsody, who was sixth at Badminton in May at his first four-star.
Another rider with five Burghley wins to his name so far – famously three in a row on Avebury – is Andrew Nicholson. The veteran Kiwi is rebuilding his top team after the retirement of Nereo, but he has two talented mounts this year, the grey Swallow Springs and Jet Set IV.
Daniel Jocelyn rounds up the Kiwi contingent, riding Dassett Cool Touch.
Two horses were held and then withdrew from the holding box: Irish rider Joseph Murphy’s Fernhill Frankie II, and Italian Clelia Casiraghi’s horse, Verdi.
Brit Alexander Bragg won the best-dressed man award with a classic outfit, teaming a tweed waistcoat and jacket with dark trousers; his baby blue tie matched the jacket’s lining.
The first day of dressage gets underway overnight, with the first of Oliver Townend’s three rides, MHS King Joules, kicking off the action.
New Zealand fans won’t have too long to wait; many of our combinations are in the early bunch on the first day of dressage. Mark and Campino are second out, followed three horses later by Tim and Bango. Andrew and Jet Set IV are two horses later, and Caroline is immediately after him.
Ginny and Star Nouveau are riding at number 13, in the second group after the morning break.
The next Kiwi combination is not out until just before lunch on Friday Dan and Dassett Cool Touch. Mark and Kiltubrid Rhapsody are late on Friday afternooon, followed by Tim with Ringwood Sky Boy, and Andrew’s Swallow Springs is third last to do his test of the 70 combinations. Go Kiwis!