Germany, seeking a fifth consecutive win in the British leg of the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) Eventing Nations Cup at Houghton Hall, go into tomorrow’s concluding cross country under pressure from Sweden.
While Germany retain the overnight lead, their margin was narrowed today following mistakes in the show jumping by the individual leader Ingrid Klimke and Felix Etzel.
After the dressage phase, the European champion Klimke led, with team-mates Christoph Wahler and Etzel second and fourth, respectively.
But after knocking two rails down riding Asha P, Klimke dropped to 19th place and is currently in the German discount score position, with Jerome Robine now third best in 14th place.
Etzel, riding Bandit 436, also knocked down a rail.
Germany will have little room for manoeuvre when the cross country starts tomorrow morning following the performance of Sweden’s show jumpers today, all of whom had clear rounds.
They lead the overnight rankings with 84.00 points, with Sweden on 87.4.
Meanwhile, Belgium has moved up to third with 92.7 and defending overall champions Britain – with Piggy French, Bubby Upton, Richard Coney and Eliza Stoddart all going clear – moved into fourth with 94.4.
Switzerland had an expensive jumping phase and dropped from third to sixth, on 97.7.
Wahler is the new individual leader, Belgium’s rider Karin Donckers is in second place with Fletcha Van 'T Verahof and Swiss team rider Salome Ludi is third on Supper Rossi.
Only 2.3 penalties separate the top three.