Grantham rider Richard Coney believes horse Poetry in Motion lived up to his name as he made an encouraging start in the dressage of the 2023 Defender Burghley Horse Trials.
The 10-year-old Irish-bred gelding scored just one sub-40 test this year at 4* level and made his Burghley debut one to remember, scoring 35.2 on Friday.
Coney, 24, based at Honington Grange in Lincolnshire, was beaming with pride at his horse who has previously struggled in the dressage.
“I’m happy to be here. That horse has only done one sub-40 test this year at 4* level so I’m impressed with him.
“He’s done Bramham and Boekelo last year, they’re all decent atmospheres but nothing like this.
“He was head down and knew what he was doing so I’m really happy with him.
“We’ve been plucking away, he’s always been struggling in his dressage, so we’ve been trying to knuckle down and get on with it.
Burghley is Poetry in Motion’s 5* eventing debut and he enters the competition in fine form after a fourth-placed finish in Bramham earlier in the year.
Coney has competed in a 5* event before with the first horse he produced, Kananaskis, at Pau, and was thrilled to match the achievement with Poetry in Motion this year.
With the right run on the cross-country, Coney believes there is enough fuel in the tank for his steed to impress further.
“He’s done a little less schooling running up to Burghley just with fitness but we’re really happy with him,” he added.
“He’s a blood horse, and by Yates so he should have a lot of gallop right until the very end.”
Defender Burghley Horse Trials (31st August - 3 September 2023) has been a major international sporting and social event for over 50 years. It attracts the world’s top equestrians and over 170,000 visitors. For more information visit www.burghley-horse.co.uk