New Zealand eventer's progress overshadowed
Kiwi three-day eventer Tim Price has a shot at a first four-star victory tomorrow but his climb up the leaderboard at the Luhmuhlen event in Germany today was completely overshadowed by the death of local rider Benjamin Winter.
The 25-year-old German was crushed after his horse, Ispo, landed on top of him at a jump on the cross-country course.
Winter was wearing an air jacket safety device, which inflates when a rider leaves the saddle, but was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital, the BBC reported.
Winter was 14th after the dressage and had completed the cross-country circuit without errors on his other horse, Wild Thing, earlier in the day.
The course designer, Captain Mark Phillips, told the BBC: ''I am sick to my stomach. A lot of people thought the course was easier than last year and we had perfect conditions today. Yet we had too many falls - six riders and two horses.
''When we have bad accidents at simple straightforward fences, where do we go? What do we do?''
Event organisers said in a statement: ''On behalf of the whole sport, we would like to extend our deepest sympathy to Benjamin's family.''
At the request of Winter's family, organisers and competitors agreed that the competition should continue.
Meanwhile, Price climbed from seventh place after dressage to second with a clear cross-country round on Wesko.
With 43.80 penalties, he's less than one dropped rail adrift of the leader, German Michael Jung.
Jung, the reigning world and Olympic champion, was also clear today aboard fischerRocana FST to remain on 41.50 penalties and in sight of his third Luhmuhlen title.
Price was also in contention ahead of the final showjumping phase at Badminton last month before settling for ninth place. He's looking to join Andrew Nicholson, Jock Paget and Mark Todd as recent Kiwi winners at four-star level.
Price's wife, Jonelle, is also in the top-10, sitting ninth aboad The Deputy, on 48.50 points.