WORTON equestrian rider Anne Dunham has made an impressive start to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

Dunham, who is riding Lucas Normark in the Grade 1a Team test, scored 73.957 per cent, with ParalympicGB teammates Sophie Wells and Sophie Christiansen also shining.

London 2012 gold and silver medallist Wells – riding Valerius – was first for ParalympicsGB in the Team test and got things off to a great start with 74.405 per cent to finish second on the Grade IV scoreboard.

The Grade 1a Team test then followed, with five-time Paralympic champion Sophie Christiansen, riding Athene Lindebjerg, scoring 77.522 per cent – the highest score at the competition so far – to finish at the top of her class.

Christiansen is followed on the class leaderboard by the Wiltshire rider, and 67-year-old five-time Paralympian Dunham said: “I was pleased. It was hard work but you expect it to be hard work.

“The arena felt enormous. I felt like a very tiny dot in there. The three of us – me, Amber (Anne’s groom and daughter) and Lucas – we were a team in there and we really focussed on each other.

“It was much better than I had hoped for. It was hot and he (Lucas) is not great in the heat. He gets a bit sluggish but I was really pleased with him, and he went in there and went for it. I really enjoyed it.”

At the half-way stage in the team competition, defending champions Great Britain are leading the standings with two more days of competition to go until the team medals are confirmed.

Their final team rider, Natasha Baker on Cabral, were the last combination in the Deodoro arena this morning with the Grade II Team test, earning a score of 71.882 per cent to take the top spot in the class.

Great Britain top the scoreboard with a total score of 225.884, with Germany just behind with 218.602 and The Netherlands third with 215.558.

Tomorrow sees the first day of the Individual Championship tests, with Dunham completing her Grade Ia test on Thursday.

For team members, the scores from their Individual Championship tests are added to their team test scores.

The three highest total scores (for teams of four) are then added together to arrive at a team total, which decides the medals.