U.S. Riders Shine on Cross Country Day at Luhmuhlen CCI4*

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The riders representing the U.S. rose to the occasion on Saturday tackling Captain Mark Phillips' 6,500m 29-fence cross country course. Land Rover Competition Grant recipients Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 looked like a true partnership, adding no penalties to their dressage score of 47.80 to move up to seventh place.

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 (Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 (Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Martin (Cochranville, Pa.) and Shamwari 4 Syndicate LLC's 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding are just 6.3 points out of the lead. Martin looked no worse for wear galloping cross country on a CCI4* after breaking his leg back in March. He also sits in 17th place with Otis Barbotiere, Otis Barbotiere Syndicate LLC's 12-year-old Selle Francais gelding, after adding 6.8 time penalties and moving up from 33rd place.

"Both horses jumped their hearts out; I was thrilled with them," Martin said.

Phillip Dutton produced a fault-free round on Mighty Nice. Though Bruce Duchossois' 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding is green at the CCI4* level, he looked like a seasoned competitor with Dutton in the irons. The pair head into Sunday's show jumping phase in fifth place on their dressage score of 46.00.

Phillip Dutton and Mighty Nice (Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Phillip Dutton and Mighty Nice (Shannon Brinkman Photo)

"He's still green at this level, but he really stepped up today and was great the whole way around," Dutton shared.

Germany's Olympic, World, and European Champion Michael Jung and fisherRocana FST remain on their dressage score of 41.5 to lie in first place heading into the final day of competition. Tim Price (NZL) and Wesko are in second place with a score of 43.80 while Bettina Hoy (GER) and Designer 10 are third on a score of 44.50.

The U.S. riders in Luhmuhlen and the USEF send their condolences to the family and friends of German rider Benjamin Winter who passed away following a fall on the cross country.

To learn more about the Luhmuhlen CCI4*, visit: http://www.luhmuehlen.de/index.asp?tree_id=65&sprache_id=2.

Follow the Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team here.