Craig Barrett holds the lead after day two at Australian International 3DE, the only 4* event in the southern hemisphere and an important leg of the HSBC FEI Classics™ series.
@FranJurga writes: And Day 3 is just beginning! The time difference has been a challenge for anyone in the US trying to follow what's going on Down Under at the biggest event of the year in Australia but our friends at Equestrian Australia posted this video so you can get to know the leader.
Craig explains the challenge of the course, the heat and his disappointment that one of his two horse was retired on course yesterday.
The Australians just seem to take the heat for granted, and their horses are often hardy Thoroughbred who have lived and raced in the heat all their lives, but the event, the FEI, the vets, and everyone there is keeping an eye on things. The course was shortened because of the searing heat, which Craig just dismisses as a factor.
Click the play button right in this window to watch the interview.
About Craig Barrett:
Craig lives in the Hunter Valley, the primary horse-producing region of Australia (think: Santa Barbara, California crossed with Lexington, Kentucky). His wife Prue is director of High Performance Eventing for Australia.
They stand the Warmblood x Thoroughbred stallion Staccato, who is the sire of the horse Craig rode successfull today, the mare Sandhills Brillaire.
About the cross-country phase of the event:
It was a dramatic Cross Country day that saw the top three after Dressage failing to make it through the finish flags. Barrett produced the run of the day with the competition trailblazing home-bred Staccato mare, adding just 0.8 of a time penalty to take the lead with a two-day total of 51.80.
Wayne Copping’s track was shortened by 30 seconds, with the Qantas Flyover taken out and the last fence situated close to the misting tents and cooling off area. The weather turned out not to be as severe as predicted, but with horse welfare paramount, the adjustment was applauded by all.
All the riders declared Adelaide a valuable member of the HSBC FEI Classics™ series. The Cross Country track, at just over 10 minutes, was challenging and demanding with the skinny fence 13 coming out of Rymill Lake catching six riders.
Technical Delegate Alec Lochore explained: “There was definitely something the horses didn’t quite understand. Some horses jumped it beautifully, but it was more than just a coincidence that six horses ran out to the side. It could have been the jump into water, or the light and the shade.”
The jumping final phase begins tonight (USA time); the 2* jumping has already begun.