Stuart Tinney takes over Melbourne Horse Trials lead

Melbourne CCI3* leader Stuart Tinney and Pluto Mio.
Melbourne CCI3* leader Stuart Tinney and Pluto Mio. © Julie Wilson

A record crowd flocked to Werribee Park to see Sydney Olympic gold medalist Stuart Tinney take the lead after the cross-country phase of the CCI3* Melbourne International Horse Trials.

Tinney, of New South Wales, rode Pluto Mio to take the lead from Sonja Johnson (Western Australia) and Parkiarrup Illicit Liaison who were leading after the dressage phase on Saturday. Shane Rose, also of New South Wales, is third with Shanghai Joe.

Tinney completed a clear cross-country course without time penalties to finish on 46.01 whilst Johnson incurred 1.6 time penalties for 46.20. Rose, who was sixth after the dressage, moved to third with a score of 52.40 as a result of a clear round and no time penalties.

Tinney said the cross-country course, designed by Ewan Kellet, made for a great ride. “It was a great course, time was tight but I was very happy with how my horse went and the weather was perfect.

“It will be good to showjump outdoors tomorrow,” Tinney said.

Victorian Enzinger remains at the front of the pack in the CCI1* class on Paihia Wilhelm with 38.54. Lauren Balcomb rode Guido Hatzis into second place (39.17) and Megan Jones is third on Kirby Park Impress (41.25).

The one to beat in the CCIJ1* is Shanae Lowings on Venture Sky High, who maintained their lead with a clear round in the cross-country ending with 42.71. Naphatta Lerdsilpjaroen from Thailand riding Tainui Lad is second, and Victorian Molly Barry is third on Just Joshen.

Below: Sonja Johnson on Parkiarrup Illicit Liaison © Jane Thompson

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