Photo: Jon Stroud Media
Britain has qualified for the final round of the team jumping at the World Equestrian Games, and is currently in ninth position.
William Funnell and Billy Buckingham jumped clear in the first round, but were unlucky to have a toe in the water and a single time fault, second time out.
“I didn’t envisage I was anywhere near it, but apparently he just put one foot back, so that was disappointing, but I was really pleased with the horse,” said William.
“It’s his first championships; I thought he jumped well. The time was always tight, but I wouldn’t have changed too much. It’s a tough course, it’s technical, but he’s a big jumper and he proved today he can do it.”
Amanda Derbyshire and Luibanta BH also had a toe in the water and finished on five faults, while Holly Smith and Hearts Destiny had two down.
“I thought he was absolutely foot perfect until he had his mistakes, where we tried to keep in the time,” said Holly. “He’s got loads of raw talent, but he’s still a little bit inexperienced so there’s still a bit to work to do.”
Last to go for Great Britain were William Whitaker and Utamaro d’Ecassuines. The duo made a good start and were unlucky to knock down two poles in the second half of their round.
“He was jumping well and really trying,” said William. “The course is a tough course and it’s what you’d expect, but it’s still disappointing.”
The team has a way to go to secure a podium place. However, there is also qualification for Tokyo 2020 at stake. The top six teams will qualify – and there is just four faults between Team GB and sixth place.
Ireland is in a stronger position, and is currently in sixth place. The final round of the team jumping takes place today (21 September), when the medals will be decided.
The individual jumping concludes on Sunday 23 September, before the closing ceremony.
You can watch all the action from WEG on Horse & Country in our daily review show. We also have coverage of all the Olympic and non-Olympic disciplines.