Andrew Nicholson and Avebury. © Mike Bain
Next for New Zealand is Caroline Powell on Boston Two Tip in 25th spot, with Mark Todd and NZB Major Milestone in 35th.
The second day of dressage is scheduled for this evening (NZ time) and all three Kiwi riders have their best mounts to come.
Nicholson was first combination out in the 38 riders to go overnight and his score of 47.2 is probably slightly disappointing for him. Boston Two Tip was making his debut at four-star level and those on the sideline are confident this is a horse with real potential for the future.
Todd's Major Milestone was a little tense and difficult, but Todd coaxed him carefully through.
This evening Powell will do her test on Lenamore, on whom she won Burghley last year. Nicholson will be on Nereo, his World Equestrian Games bronze medalist, and Todd will ride his WEG horse NZB Land Vision.
Expectations are high that all three will challenge the leaders.
The cross country phase of the event is on Sunday, with the showjumping on Monday.