Course designer Ian Stark’s goal of slowing down the CCI5* horses and riders at the MARS Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill was achieved. After getting flack for a too-generous time allowed in the past two years, Stark told riders, “Be careful what you wish for.”
Of the 25 starters, only one pair—first-time five-star competitor Mia Farley (USA) and Phelps—managed a double clear on cross country. Their efforts moved them up from tenth to third place with a score of 32.9. And though they performed beautifully to maintain their lead, Oliver Townend (GBR) and Cooley Rosalent couldn’t beat the time allowed, either. They incurred 6 time penalties for a total score of 29.1 ahead of show jumping. William Fox-Pitt (GBR) and Grafennacht added 5.2 time faults to their score, but moved into the second place spot on a score of 31.3.
Four horse-and-rider combinations retired on course, five were eliminated along the way and one withdrew before the start.
Here’s a look at how horses and riders fared on Stark’s “six-star” cross-country course:
For full results, click here.
The MARS Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill CCI5* continues with show jumping tomorrow, October 22, at 2:00 p.m.
Thanks to Mane ‘n Tail Equine for our coverage of the 2023 Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill, including rider interviews, competition reports, horse spotlights, photos, videos and more!