Medal favorites Lottie Fry (GRB) and Everdale took the lead in the 2024 FEI Dressage World Cup Final in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Wednesday with a Grand Prix score of 75.388.

Runnerups Patrik Kittel (SWE) and Touchdown trail by more than 2% on 73.292. Denmark’s Nanna Skodborg Merrald and Blue Hors Don Olymbrio sit in third on 72.904. 

It’s a commanding lead for Fry and the 15-year-old stallion, but one well off their high score. Their personal best in the Grand Prix, achieved at Aachen last year, is 78.913.

“He loves arenas like that and sometimes he can barely contain his excitement but he just about managed it today!” said Fry.

The podium shock of the day came from Germany’s Isabell Werth, the most decorated equestrian athlete in history. Second-last into the ring, her promising test on DSP Quantaz fell apart in the two-tempi changes and was followed by more costly errors. The pair earned a score of 72.236 to slot into fourth place on the standings.

Werth and DSP Quantaz were second in the first round at the World Cup Final last year and have scored over 78% in the Grand Prix seven times prior. Their a personal best is 80.348, achieved in Achleiten, AUT in 2020.

“I’ve done a lot of Finals but I’ve never been second!” said eight-time World Cup Finalist Kittel. “I’m a bit surprised because I thought OK you know The Queen (Isabell Werth) is coming. But then I saw she had some mistakes, which is a bit unusual for her, and then I got a message that I was second and, of course, I was happy about that!”

Top 15 combinations advance to the Freestyle on Friday.