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Saturday, September 06, 2008  •  12:21 GMT

ROSIE RIDES A SCORCHER

Worcestershire based Rosie Thomas first out on the cross-country course at The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials showed everyone how to do it with an exemplary demonstration of cross-country riding. Riding the Thoroughbred Barry’s Best (no.2) Rosie jumped a clear round inside the time – a feat she achieved last year at her first Burghley. The combination was also well placed at Badminton this year.

“Having had two good results previously gave me so much more confidence and I decided to go for it – I had nothing to lose – and I know he is such a bold horse,” said Rosie who was in 58th place after dressage. It was the first time that Rosie, who runs a riding school near Tenbury Wells had the position of pathfinder. “As I have previously always been late on I had a feeling that this year it might be my turn for an early number and it is quite strange to go out there without any reference and especially as there is just an amazing pristine road of green ahead of you. But once I got going I forgot all about being number one and stuck to my plans going all the straight routes.” The pair had one un-nerving moment three from home. “That was because I was getting too excited about the time which was a bit premature so I gave myself a talking to and got a grip.”

After eight completions Rosie is currently in fifth place the only one on so far to remain on her dressage score. Herefordshire vet James Robinson with Comanche has moved to the top of the leader board adding 8.8pen to his dressage score. The former European British squad members were unfortunate to fall in the water at both their last international competitions at Badminton and Gatcombe and while everyone held their breath as they came to the Land Rover Trout Hatchery all were relieved to be able to cheer the pair on their way.