William Fox-Pitt will have it all to do in the show jumping discipline of the Kentucky Three-Day Event if he wants to claim a third win in four years as he lies fourth going into the final day.
The three-time Olympic medallist impressed in the cross-country event on horse Seacookie TSF, riding faultlessly to move from tenth overall up to fourth.
However to claim the overall title Fox-Pitt will have to overhaul New Zealander Andrew Nicholson who strengthened his grip on the competition with strong rides on both his horses, Calico Joe and Quimbo.
The latter lies first overall, with Calico Joe second, giving Nicholson – who also has three Olympic medals to his name – a great opportunity to win in Kentucky for the first time.
Fox-Pitt will have just one opportunity to catch Nicholson after his second horse, the overnight leader Chilli Morning, refused to jump a fence and had to retire as a result.
And he admitted he did not yet know why the horse had turned down the fence. He said: “Who knows? There will be lots of time to reflect on it. Maybe he just over-jumped the fence before and shut down there.
"Whatever the reason, there was no point in carrying on—he’s 13 years old, and he’s not here for the experience. We’ll try again another day.”
Elsewhere Mary King also retired on horse Fernhill Urco, who had been fifth overnight.
© Sportsbeat 2013