Lexington, Ky. – Cross-country day at the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event Presented by MARS Equestrian™ proved influential and saw a leaderboard shake-up. Tamie Smith and Mai Baum moved into the lead on the strength of their double-clear round over Derek di Grazia’s cross-country course. In addition to leading the overall standings, Smith and Mai Baum are in contention for the Land Rover/USEF CCI5*-L Eventing National Championship presented by MARS Equestrian™ as the top U.S. combination.
Smith (Murrieta, Calif.) and Mai Baum were in top form around the course, which consisted of 28 fences and had an optimum time of 11:26. The pair answered the questions asked by the challenging course to finish with no jump or time penalties. Smith and Alexandra Ahearn, Ellen Ahearn, and Eric Markell’s 2006 German Sport Horse gelding head into the final phase with a score of 24.2.
“It is so special and amazing. It is hard to top that,” Smith said of her round with longtime partner Mai Baum. “He and I have been able to—a little bit—learn together, so that’s really special. He has been able to take us all over the world. Then, to be able to finish here [with Mai Baum] at 17 and double-clear and preparing at my home base on the West Coast is even better.”
While Tom McEwen (GBR) and JL Dublin are in second place on a score of 27.8, Liz Halliday-Sharp and Miks Master C are close behind in third place on a score of 28.5. Halliday-Sharp (Lexington, Ky.) expertly guided Miks Master C, Ocala Horse Properties, LLC and Deborah Palmer’s 2012 Swedish Warmblood gelding, around his first CCI5*-L track with no jumping and 1.6 time penalties. As the second-highest U.S. combination, they are in the reserve spot on national championship leaderboard.
LRK3DE concludes Sunday with combinations jumping around Steve Stephen’s course. The CCI4*-S begins at 10:45 a.m. ET, while the CCI5*-L starts at 2:15 p.m. ET.
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