Fox-Pitt Tops Dressage at Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event

William Fox-Pitt of Great Britain ode Cool Mountain into the lead yesterday on the second and final day of dressage at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, presented by Bridgestone. His score of 42.8 penalties put him just in front of the Thursday leader, Karen O'Connor on Mandiba, and Allison Springer on Arthur, each with 43.7 penalties.

Three-time Rolex Kentucky winner Kim Severson, on Tipperary Liadhnan, lurked just behind in fourth place (44.8).

Rolex Kentucky marks the first four-star start for Cool Mountain, a 10-year-old English-bred Thoroughbred. "Cool Mountain is a very talented horse on the flat and has been a pleasure to train," said Fox-Pitt, 41, yesterday. "But I didn't expect it all to come together today--although I hoped it might. To produce his best test today, in this atmosphere, is a credit to him, but I think he's got more in him."

This is the third Rolex Kentucky start for Springer, of Marshall, Va., and Arthur, an 11-year-old U.S.-bred Thoroughbred-cross, but it's the first time they've been among the top three. "It's great to be here with these riders, for sure," said Springer, 35, as she sat at the press conference with international stars Fox-Pitt, Oliver Townend, O'Connor, and Severson. "I've been working really hard to improve myself and my horse in all three phases, and I hope that this weekend we can really put it all together."

Townend of Great Britain, who has brought two horses to Rolex Kentucky seeking to win the $350,000 Rolex Grand Slam, stood sixth on Ashdale Master Cruise (46.2) and ninth on ODT Master Rose (49.8).

When asked what he thought of the placings, he replied, "I'm not high enough."

Townend, 27, added, "The horses were about as good as they could be today, but it's very tough competition we're up against."

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