The legendary Michael Jung leads the German victory lap at the final leg of the FEI Eventing Nations Cup™ 2019 series in Boekelo,
In the thrilling finale to the FEI Eventing Nations Cup™ 2019 series at Boekelo, The Netherlands today, Team Germany posted their fourth win of the season while league leaders Sweden held on to take the series title. However some of the biggest smiles were on Swiss faces when they pulled Olympic qualification out of the bag.
There were three teams in contention for the single ticket to Tokyo 2020, and Dutch hopes were dashed when they found themselves lying eleventh of the 12 competing nations after Saturday’s cross-country phase. But Switzerland and Belgium slugged it out to the very end, with the final series rankings swinging the pendulum in favour of the Swiss.
The new Olympic format led to plenty of head-scratching during the four-day fixture at which the German team took command at the outset and never flinched. Without a drop score, the multi-medalled Sandra Auffarth (Let’s Dance 73), Michael Jung (fischerRocana FST) and Ingrid Klimke (SAP Asha P) put just 78.10 penalty points on the board after Dressage, with Auffarth also leading the individual rankings on her mark of 24.90. And with a hat-trick of Cross-Country zeros yesterday, this phenomenal threesome looked all but unassailable going into today’s final Jumping phase.
However there was plenty of movement below them as the cross-country course designed by Adrian Ditcham played its part. Australia climbed from sixth to second thanks to brilliant clear runs inside the time by Chris Burton (Clever Louis) and Kevin McNab (Fernhill Tabasco), and the Belgians rocketed up from seventh to third, thanks in no small part to a great performance from Lara de Liedekerke-Meier (Alpaga d’Arville) and just 3.6 time penalties for Constantin van Rijckevorsel (Beat It). With a two-phase tally of 117.50 they were lying just over three points behind Australia and just ahead of the Japanese who were in fourth going into the final day, while the Swiss also made serious headway when soaring up from 12th to fifth, their running total of 125.90 leaving them just eight points adrift of their Belgian rivals as the action resumed this afternoon.
And it was a real roller-coaster in the battle for the team placings, with the 84-seconds time-allowed proving difficult for many to get.
The team partnerships were last to go, and the Belgians dropped down the leaderboard when adding 30.80 to their tally. However despite the addition of just 0.40 for pathfinder Caroline Gerber (Tresor de Chignan CH) for going over the time, the Swiss also lost their grip when putting 30.00 more on the board. Robin Godel (Grandeur de Lully CH) collected 13.20 on his tour of the 12-fence track while Tiziana Realini (Toubleu de Rueire), who had produced one of those precious cross-country clears, posted 16.4 to bring their team total of 155.9, leaving the Swiss just behind their Belgian rivals in seventh place at the end of the day.
However the Olympic spot would be earned by the country lying highest of the unqualified nations in the final FEI Eventing Nations Cup™ 2019 standings. The Swiss lay third coming into this seventh and last leg, and their final total of 370 points left them well clear of the Belgians who completed with 355. Meanwhile with their closest opposition from Italy not lining out this time around, the leading Swedes, carrying 435 points, had a clear run to the 2019 title despite finishing tenth at this last leg.
At the sharp end, Germany held on for a convincing win on a final scoreline of 94.10, while a clear from Burton, 5.20 for McNab and just four faults for Samantha Birch (Finduss PFB) secured runner-up spot for Australia on a final tally of 123.50. Japan finished an impressive third, Kazuma Tomoto (Bernadette Utopia) and Atsushi Negishi (Ventura de la Chaule JRA) going clear in both of the final two phases while Yoshiaki Oiwa (Bart L JRA), who had been lying individually second after dressage but who was penalised for a cross-country refusal, had a pole down at the penultimate triple combination today. The Japanese finished less than a single penalty point behind the Australians, and it is quite clear they will be a force to be reckoned with on home ground in Tokyo next summer. Fourth went to New Zealand (130.00) and fifth to Great Britain (143.00).
The very last rider into the ring, Germany’s Auffarth, had individual glory in her grasp until hitting the last element of the triple combination which dropped her to fourth and opened the door for Great Britain’s Laura Collett (London 52) to take the individual honours.
by Louise Parkes
All Video Footage of the Lots for The Monart 10 year Anniversary Sale are now online on their new website.
Go to www.monartsale.com to view the fantastic selection of quality Irish horses they have on offer for this years' sale.
All video footage can be viewed, shared or downloaded direct from thier website.
The Monart Sale Catalogue is now available online for viewing & download.
Rooms are filling up fast in the hotel at Monart so for those of you who want to enjoy the full experience of Monart make sure you call the hotel direct to book your room on +353 (0)53 92 38999
Please remember Rooms can not be booked online they can only be booked over the phone that way we can ensure they are kept solely for guests of the horse sale.
View Catalogue Here
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Oliver Townend (GBR) has returned to the head of the FEI Eventing World Rankings, with former girlfriend Piggy French making it a British one-two and relegating New Zealand’s Tim Price (NZL), who has held the top spot for the last four months, to third place.
This is the third time that Townend has been world number one, having featured in both 2018 and in 2009. The 37-year-old has won team gold at three editions of the FEI Eventing European Championships, at Pratoni del Vivaro 2007 (ITA), Fontainebleau 2009 (FRA) and Strzegom 2017 (POL).
2019 has been a stellar year for the hard-working Yorkshireman, who won team silver at last month’s FEI Eventing European Championship in Luhmühlen (GER) and also claimed victories at Lexington CCI5* (USA), Burnham Market CCI4* (GBR) and the Irish CCI3* in Ballindenisk.
Piggy French (GBR), this year’s Badminton winner and runner-up at Burghley, is now within 50 points of the top spot, having moved up from third to second place, with former world number one Tim Price (NZL) dropping to number three in the rankings.
Big movers in this month’s FEI World Eventing Rankings are Ludwig Svennerstal (SWE) from 35th to 13th place, Pippa Funnell (GBR) from 47th to 14th, Tomoto Kazuma (JPN) from 29th to 15th, Andrew Nicholson (NZL) from 33rd to 16th, Peter Flarup (DEN) from 91st to 22nd and Sarah Bullimore (GBR) from 43rd to 25th.
With the final team quota place for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on offer at the FEI Nations Cup™ fixture in Boekelo (NED) next weekend, and plenty of other Eventing action over the next month, more changes in the ranking list can be expected.
View full FEI World Eventing Rankings here.
The countdown to the 10 year anniversary sale of the 2019 Monart Sale has begun. 120 of the best young horses Ireland has to offer have been selected for this years sale. Catalogue will be coming out soon!
(FEI/Oliver Hardt for Getty images)
Germany are European team champions once more and Ingrid Klimke joins an elite group of back-to-back winners as Michael Jung settles for silver and Ireland’s Cathal Daniels soars up the leaderboard to take individual bronze. Sweden and Italy claim Olympic team slots for Tokyo 2020.
The popular and ever-gracious Ingrid Klimke (GER) thrilled her mass of cheering, flag-waving supporters by conjuring a faultless Jumping round from her wonderful horse SAP Hale Bob OLD to clinch both the team title for Germany as well as her second successive individual gold medal at the Longines FEI European Championships, held in her home country at Luhmühlen.
Klimke, who lost her grip on the world title last year when hitting the very last fence at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Tryon (USA), never looked like making a mistake this afternoon on the spring-heeled Bobby, and she left her team mate Michael Jung, who was bidding for a record fourth European title, no margin for error.
When Jung’s fischerChipmunk FST, a horse that is surely a thrilling prospect for Tokyo, hit the second part of the double at 10b, Klimke smiled in rueful sympathy before dancing a jig of excitement.
She is the fifth rider in the 66-year history of the Europeans to win back-to-back titles, following Britain’s Lucinda Green (1975, 1977), Ginny Eliot (1985, 1987, 1989), Pippa Funnell (1999, 2001) and Michael Jung (2011, 2013, 2015) and the second to do it on the same horse, following Funnell’s triumphs on Supreme Rock.
"I definitely came here to win for sure. It was so close, but this year the luck was with me."
Ingrid Klimke (Germany)
"It's really special knowing that there are so many very quality riders and horses" said Klimke.
Klimke paid tribute to her long-time Jumping trainer Kurt Gravemeier, who came to walk the course with her, and said that this victory for Germany would be “a positive wind” for the Tokyo Olympic Games next year.
Jung was sportsmanlike in defeat, describing the weekend as “super sport”. He explained: “I was a little bit too fast in the last combination, but this little mistake has not made the whole week bad, so I am very happy. We are a great team and we still have one more year to work on little details and I think we are well prepared for next season.”
Germany’s team gold, their fourth European title since the country’s dazzling run of success began at Luhmühlen in 2011, was never really in doubt with their comfortable three-fence margin after Cross Country, but the fight for silver and bronze medals became an intriguing game of snakes and ladders as team fortunes ebbed and flowed over what was a relatively straightforward Jumping track.
Great Britain just managed to hold onto team silver – by 0.3 of a penalty – as Oliver Townend (Cooley Master Class SRS, ninth), Piggy French (Quarrycrest Echo, 15th) and Pippa Funnell (Majas Hope, 22nd) each clocked up four faults. Townend, for whom it was a personal best team performance, did well to recover his composure after Cooley Master Class got too close to the planks at eight and crashed through the fence.
Sweden, silver medallists in 2017, were the beneficiaries of a titanic struggle for the team bronze medal, securing qualification for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year in the best possible style with superb clear rounds from Ludwig Svennerstal (El Kazir SP, eighth), Louise Romeike (Wakiki 207, 12th) and Ebba Adnervik (Chippieh, 23rd).
Svennerstal said: “The Olympics is really the highlight for us. It’s very important for our federation and for ourselves. The team has worked really hard to achieve this and we’re extremely happy. I think we had a slightly disappointing start to the week and then we regrouped and everyone in the whole team, including behind the scenes, has been working very hard and we’re very happy with the outcome.”
France’s grasp on the bronze medal was already precarious when Alexis Goury withdrew Trompe l’Oeul d’Emery at this morning’s horse inspection. The 2003 and 2007 European champion Nicolas Touzaint put France back in the hunt with a magnificent clear round on Absolut Gold HCD, but medal success hinged on Lt Col Thibaut Vallette delivering a clear round. Unfortunately Qing de Briot hit the fifth fence, putting paid to both France’s team and his own individual medal chances by frustratingly small margins.
Italy, with a clear round from Arianna Schivo (Quefira de l’Ormeau, 17th), looked threatening until Pietro Roman (Baraduff) incurred eight faults and Giovanni Ugulotti suffered a nightmare 22.4-penalty round on Note Worthy. This relegated Italy to fifth, but at least with the compensation of the second available Olympic qualifying slot.
Ireland finished sixth, a weekend of mixed fortunes being compounded with the overnight withdrawal of Ciaran Glynn’s November Night. However, there was a clutch of clear rounds from riders in the top 10 and the supremely talented Cathal Daniels (IRL), riding the diminutive mare Rioghan Rua, was the one left at the head of the queue for the individual bronze medal. The 22-year-old from Co Galway is Ireland’s first European individual medallist since Lucy Thompson in 1995.
“It’s an amazing feeling!” he said. “I’ve gone through Juniors, Young Riders and now seniors with this mare. Unfortunately, the team didn’t get as strong a result as they wanted, but I was glad I was able to get a medal and keep spirits high and build again for next year on the road to Tokyo.”
The Olympic countdown has already begun!
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(FEI/ /Oliver Hardt for Getty images)
Michael Jung (GER), who has smashed pretty much every record in the sport, has just put himself in line for another – a fourth European title on a fourth horse – having taken the lead at the end of the Dressage phase at the Longines FEI European Eventing Championship in Luhmühlen (GER).
The double Olympic champion, who never gives away a mark if he can help it, has a great reputation for getting the best out of all sorts of horses. With his Luhmühlen ride fischerChipmunk FST, he has the added benefit of the 11-year-old by Contendro having been well established at top level by his former rider, Julia Krajewski (GER).
Jung’s outstanding score of 20.9 – despite a break of pace in the free walk – could not be bettered, even by defending champion Ingrid Klimke (GER), and the German team is now 16.8 penalties ahead of the 2017 winners, Great Britain, with a mere 68.9 penalties on the scoreboard.
“Chipmunk is a fantastic horse. He’s so intelligent and extremely well trained,” said Jung, who blamed himself for the mistake. “He has a lot of power and sometimes there’s a difficult balance between that and keeping him relaxed. Maybe I risked a little bit too much in the walk so he accidentally broke into trot.
"I nearly liked everything in the test today, just not really the walk - the extended walk especially!"
Michael Jung (Germany)
Klimke produced a reliably stellar performance on her regular team partner SAP Hale Bob OLD to score 22.2. Their test reflected a beautifully trained horse and a happy partnership, and Klimke even had time to pat her 15-year-old bay gelding in reward for a smooth flying change.
British individual Laura Collett and London 52, the first-day leaders, are now third, ahead of German team member Kai Ruder (Colani Sunrise) and France’s Lt Col Thibaut Vallette (Qing de Briot).
Regular Dutch team rider Tim Lips has slotted into sixth place on Bayro on a score of 26.0 and three British riders occupy the next three places.
They are headed by team anchorman Oliver Townend, who has been grounded for some weeks after a fall. He put in a solid performance, bar a slight stumble in trot, and is in seventh place on his dual Kentucky winner Cooley Master Class (27.6). Individual runner Kitty King (Vendredi Biats) is eighth on 27.9.
The 2009 champion Kristina Cook, currently ninth on 28.3, is back on the team with a well-behaved Billy The Red. They were dropped from the team last year due to the Balou de Rouet gelding putting in some occasionally explosive Dressage performances.
The Belgian team, which is seeking one of the two precious Olympic qualification slots for Tokyo 2020, is in third place with a team total of 90.9; France, Ireland and Italy follow, with just 3.4 penalties covering the four nations.
Attention is now focused on tomorrow’s Cross Country test designed by Mike Etherington-Smith, who has re-routed the track, allowing plenty of alternative routes while warning that they will cost in time penalties. “It’s beautifully designed and built,” commented Townend.
“I’m a fan of Mike Etherington Smith’s courses. There are no blind questions. If you’re on your line and you and your horse are focused on the job, it should ride well.”
“The way the fences are situated, it’s very easy to make a mistake,” added Townend’s team mate, Kristina Cook, a veteran of nine Europeans and, with pathfinder Pippa Funnell, a member of the winning British quartet 20 years ago here in Luhmühlen.
The overnight leader Michael Jung is also appreciative of the 26–fence track: “It’s a very fair course, to be in the time you have to be fast, you have to take a little bit of a risk, and as faster as you go, as easier you can have somewhere a little mistake.”
Tomorrow promises to be a thrilling competition. First out on course at 10.00 CEST will be the Netherlands’ Merel Blom and Chiccolino.
Follow the action on FEI TV and click here for full results and start times.
(FEI/Oliver Hardt for Getty images)
Belgium leads the team standings at this early stage, with Britain’s Laura Collett holding the individual top spot after the first day of Dressage.
Laura Collett (30) competing as an individual for Great Britain, produced some stunning work to take the lead at the end of the first day of Dressage at the Longines FEI Eventing European Championship Luhmuhlen (GER), but it looks as though the door has been left open for a potential new order tomorrow.
The graceful Collett, a neat rider known for her prowess in this phase, scored 25.5 on the German-bred 10-year-old London 52, a runner-up at Boekelo CCI4*-L last year and winner of the Chatsworth CCI4*-S this year, but only one of the three judges placed her first.
“He’s still a bit green and shy,” explained a delighted Collett of London 52, who made only small errors in the second flying-change and with a misstep in the canter work. “He saw the grandstand and was a little overwhelmed. He’s never been in a situation like this before, but he listened to me and kept his head.”
"He's a bit green and shy....he knows all the moves and trust me so much. If I keep riding and hold his hand, he's all right."
Laura Collett (Great Britain)
“He knows all the moves and trusts me so much. If I keep riding and hold his hand, he’s all right. I’m obviously delighted with his score and it’s exciting for the future.”
The former Junior and Young Rider European Champion is a mere 0.3 ahead of Germany’s second team rider Kai Rüder on Colani Sunrise and France’s 2015 European team and individual bronze medallists Lt Col Thibaut Vallette on the elastic moving Qing de Briot ENE HN.
Both the French army rider, a member of the 2016 Olympic gold medal team, and Rüder are reliably elegant in the Dressage arena and the pair are in joint second place on 25.8 penalties.
“It was a super dressage test with lots of highlights,” commented Ruder. “Colani was very relaxed, with good half-passes and the extended canter was just brilliant. It’s wonderful to see how much he improves from test to test. He’s a very strong character and you have to respect him - then he’ll do anything to please.”
The Ground Jury – Martin Plewa (GER, President), Anne-Mette Binder (DEN) and Peter Andrew Shaw (AUS) – awarded sub 30 marks to seven of today’s 35 riders, including the first two for the Belgian team, Laura Loge (Absolut Allegro) and the hugely experienced Karin Donckers (Fletcha van’t Verahof).
The Belgian pair is in equal fourth place on 28.8 penalties which gives the nation, in search of qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, a boost in first place in the team competition at this stage.
Germany, the host nation, is second – their pathfinder, Andreas Dibowski (FRH Corrida) scored 34.6 – and France is third. Defending champions Great Britain are fifth.
Pippa Funnell (GBR), who won the European title at Luhmuhlen 20 years ago, was a late call up to the team on Monday and is taking the pathfinder role on Majas Hope, currently 17th individually on 35.4. Second to go, Piggy French (GBR) and Quarrycrest Echo, members of the winning team at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon (USA) last year, are in seventh place on 29.8.
“This is no dressage competition,” pointed out French. “I’ve walked the cross-country course once and my first impression is that it’s a proper championship course. You have to think really hard about which lines you choose. It’s a quick track with decent waters.”
Competition is expected to hot up tomorrow when all eyes will be on the defending champion Ingrid Klimke (GER) and her brilliant horse SAP Hale Bob OLD, plus her team mate and three-time champion Michael Jung (GER) with his exciting new ride fischerChipmunk FRH.
Other potential highlights are world number two Oliver Townend (GBR) riding the dual Kentucky winner Cooley Master Class, Ireland’s Sam Watson on the attractive dun Tullaberg Flamenco and France’s dual European champion Nicolas Touzaint (Absolut Gold TDC).
Follow the action on FEI TV and with live results on www.rechenstelle.de
Click here for the full results.
Watch highlights here.
The U.S. Eventing Team concluded competition at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games capturing the team gold medal and securing their qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games next summer on Sunday. The team finished on a collective score of 91.2, producing four double clear efforts in the final phase. Brazil earned the second Olympic qualification slot and ended on a 122.1 to collect team silver. Canada finished in third place with an overall score of 183.7, for bronze. Individually, Boyd Martin rode Tsetserleg to gold, while teammate Lynn Symansky and RF Cool Play earned the silver. Doug Payne finished just off the podium with Star Witness for fourth place, while Tamie Smith and Mai Baum concluded their weekend in 17th.
Tamie Smith (Murietta, Calif.) and Mai Baum, a 13-year-old German Sport Horse gelding (Loredano x Rike) owned by Alex Ahearn, Ellen Ahearn, & Erick Markell, were the first U.S. combination to test the show jumping track, designed by Guilherme Jorge (BRA), and produced a beautiful double clear round to jump-start the day for the United States.
“He feels ready to go again. He just felt great today. He really ate up the atmosphere and couldn’t have been better. I’m really proud of him,” said Smith. “That’s what makes this sport beautiful. I’m just really grateful that my teammates performed great. My horse is wonderful, and we were both a little caught out there yesterday and that won’t be a mistake we have again.”
With the pressure mounting after two strong rounds from the Brazilian team, Doug Payne (Aiken, S.C.) and Starr Witness, an eight-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare (Chello III Veneur) owned by Payne, Laurie McRee, and Catherine Winter, navigated the course with determination and speed, securing the second double clear round for the team. Payne was quick to thank the staff, supporters, and fans for their continued encouragement.
“For a championship like this, you show up and the vast amount of support that we get both from U.S. Equestrian, the owners, all of the support staff. We are really the top that’s visible, but we wouldn’t be here without their help, and of course the horses. They put forward a great effort and we’ll forever be appreciative.”
Symansky (Middleburg, Va.) and RF Cool Play had a rail in-hand to keep their second-place position on the leaderboard, but didn’t need it, as the duo crossed through the timers with a fault-free effort. Symansky was complimentary of the team’s performance and the overall efforts displayed throughout the competition.
“This is a group that knows each other already. We all get along really well, and it does make the pressured environment easier when you have a group of people that supports each other when things don’t always go according to plan. It’s pretty special to not have everything go one-hundred percent for everyone yesterday and to come back out and do four clean rounds. It’s a nice feeling to wrap everything up with.”
For Martin, the anchor position for the team was a successful one during both the dressage and cross-country phases, and the final day of competition was no exception. Guiding Tsetserleg, an 11-year-old Trakhener gelding (Windfall x Buddenbrock) owned by Christine Turner, Martin secured not only the team’s gold medal finish but also his own individual gold achievement with their faultless ride.
“This is a big relief. We all worked very, very hard. There was a lot of pressure coming here, and it’s just good to pull off a good performance. I think it was a brilliant competition. It was everything you dream of in a championship. I think the crowd had an exciting contest to the very finish, and this was much harder of a competition than I expected. We came here and were under the gun a bit, and we all stepped out and tried our hardest…we have great horses and good riders. We have the best coach. There was no stone left unturned.”
In a decisive and highly-anticipated competition for the U.S. Eventing Team, Chef d’Equipe Erik Duvander led with a composed and stead-fast aura, giving his team both the guidance and confidence needed to achieve their goal of securing a qualification for Tokyo 2020.
“I’m just honestly really pleased to be a part of this group. Today is the rider’s day and the owner’s day. I’ve seen how much work these guys have put into this; the preparation and how much it means to them, and then be able to execute. I couldn’t wish for a better ending than four clear rounds, and that’s a really strong performance. Everyone stayed on task through to the very end. If we can keep building on what we did here and keep that momentum it will get us closer and closer. It’s about using every day we have before Tokyo to keep improving in the same manner that we’ve been working now,” he concluded.
The competition also marked the end of an era for the U.S. Eventing Team, as Managing Director Joanie Morris completed her final championship competition with the program. Morris, who has been a figurehead within the discipline for the last decade, closed out her tenure accomplishing the only goal for the Pan American Games, earning the coveted qualification.
“I’m incredibly proud of this entire team. This job has been an incredible privilege, and I was proud to see it through to Olympic qualification, as that was the goal here. Individual gold and silver are just the icing on the cake, and it was two riders who have been in this program since the beginning of my time with US Equestrian. I’m very proud of them and look forward to all of the team’s successes in the future.”
For complete results, click here.
FarmAbility is SsangYong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials’ chosen charity for 2019.
FarmAbility co-farmers are people with learning disabilities and autism who contribute to farms and growing spaces across Oxfordshire. While learning practical skills in animal care, vegetable growing, woodworking and other farm-based activities, co-farmers demonstrate that disability shouldn’t prevent you from doing things you enjoy, belonging to a friendly and productive team or becoming a thriving, active member of society.
In the build-up to SsangYong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials, which takes place from 19-22 September, co-farmers from FarmAbility will be assisting the events team in preparing fences and arenas, and helping with other practical tasks.
FarmAbility’s Director, Sarah Giles, said: “Co-farmers face a number of challenges in their lives: at FarmAbility we tackle thebarriers they face to having a regular, meaningful occupation with all the benefit to physical health, mental well-being and social connectivity that this brings. FarmAbility offers outdoor activities inspired by the rich combination of nature, animals, fresh air and physical exercise to engage people with differing abilities and needs.
“We’re lucky to have three beautiful horses - Dahrish, Monty and Marlene. While they won’t win prizes for show jumping or dressage, our horses have a gold medal in helping co-farmers to reduce anxiety levels, build confidence and skills, and contribute in a meaningful way to the welfare of our horses.”
She added: “Being involved in this way with such a prestigious event is a brilliant opportunity for all of us at FarmAbility, and we’re looking forward to meeting event goers and to being part of the excitement in September.”
To to learn more about FarmAbility, please visit www.farmability.org.uk or check out the charity on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Everyone who books a ticket to SsangYong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials (www.blenheimhorse.co.uk) has the option to make a donation to help raise funds for FarmAbility, which the event will match.
As well as the feature CCI4* classes and a host of competitions for amateur riders, SsangYong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials features excellent, carefully selected, shopping opportunities. There is a full and varied programme in the Attractions Arena on Saturday and Sunday, superb children’s entertainment and great food, ranging from outlets offering locally produced to a range of dining packages.
After four days of thrilling world-class action, Great Britain's Oliver Townend made history becoming the first British rider to successfully defend his title and win the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event back-to-back. Townend's win not only secured a healthy share of the $400,000 prize money, but also the keys to a 12-month lease of a Land Rover Discovery vehicle.
For those that missed out on the action, or to re-live the four-day competition, Land Rover has created a two minute highlights film celebrating another successful Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event.
After four days of thrilling world-class action, Great Britain's Oliver Townend made history becoming the first British rider to successfully defend his title and win the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event back-to-back. Townend's win not only secured a healthy share of the $400,000 prize money, but also the keys to a 12-month lease of a Land Rover Discovery vehicle.
With just one pole separating the top three riders on the final day, the electric atmosphere turned into tension when Tim Price (NZL), lying in third place, produced a stunning clear round to put the pressure on the final two athletes. All eyes were then on home hero, Boyd Martin (USA) and Tsetserleg, with the patriotic crowd eager for an American victory for the first time in 11 years. An eruption of applause echoed through the stadium as Martin cleared the final fence and was just one horse away from victory. Silence fell as Oliver Townend and Cooley Masterclass entered the arena, hungry to defend their 2018 title. With nerves of steel, Townend delivered a faultless round, denying the home victory for Boyd Martin, and making history to become the first ever British equestrian to win back-to-back Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event titles.
With tears glistening in his eyes, an emotional Oliver Townend commented, “I am so proud, I can’t say what this means. It’s a huge team effort, it hasn’t been an easy journey but we always believed in him and the horse is pure class - it was just my job to press the buttons at the right time and he delivered again.”
“This is one of the biggest events in the world and it’s an eventing childhood dream to win at the highest level. The Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event is second-to-none, the infrastructure is out of this world and the whole week has been so phenomenal”
Oliver Townend, Great Britain
Away from the equestrian action, Land Rover North America provided a full program of experiential customer activations for visitors of all ages. The ‘Start Off-Road’ teen-driving experience returned for a second year, with teenage guests ages 14 years or older lining up to drive either a Land Rover Discovery Sport or Range Rover Evoque on a multi-terrain track under the watchful and highly trained eyes of a Land Rover Driving Instructor.
Alongside the teen-driving experience in the Sponsorship Village, adult spectators enjoyed test-driving a selection of vehicles including a full-size Range Rover, Land Rover Discovery, the midsize Range Rover Sport and Range Rover Velar on off-road terrain. Not forgetting the younger generation of guests, the popular ‘Junior Drive Experience’ saw children aged four to eight-years-old given the chance to navigate a specially designed course in mini electric cars, scaled down from the original Land Rover Series I vehicle.
The Land Rover Ultimate Stable provided the opportunity for ticket holders to not only meet their sporting heroes, but also gain perspective into the factors that make each Land Rover model distinct and unique. The hugely popular ‘Land Rover Tailgate Experience’ was another hotly contested competition, with John Whitty and Beth Geiser (Louisville) crowned the winners.
SHOW JUMPING FINAL DAY, SUNDAY 28 APRIL
OLIVER TOWNEND, COOLEY MASTER CLASS - 25.3
BOYD MARTIN, TSETSERLEG - 27.9
TIM PRICE, XAVIER FAER - 30.9
The sun shone down on the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event cross-country course, set by Derek di Grazia, with Great Britain’s Oliver Townend showing why he is the defending champion producing a brilliant clear round and just 1.2 time faults, despite losing a shoe half way around the course. Townend remains in the lead on a score of 25.3 heading into tomorrow’s final show jumping phase.
Much to the delight of the home crowd, USA’s Boyd Martin made the course look easy aboard Tsetserleg, just one of only four partnerships to finish inside the optimum time of 11.20, to end the day in second place. The Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing live contender, Tim Price (NZL), climbed up to third position with the stunning bay gelding, Xavier Faer, keeping his dressage score of 30.9.
The rumours of the technically challenging course proved to be true, with the first three horse and rider combinations unable to complete the course resulting in elimination. USA’s Will Coleman was the first rider to go below the 11.20 time set, with Olympic bronze medallist Phillip Dutton producing a masterclass round with Z finishing two seconds under the time.
Townend commented on his ride: “Once I realised the shoe had gone, I was conscious of having to balance more and be more conservative than I usually would be.”
“He was certainly a bit keener than he was last year, he felt stronger and was definitely up for it, his ears were pricked all the way. He made his own mind up over a couple of the jumps and at times I felt like he was more in control than I was - he did his job well and is becoming an incredible horse.”
Oliver Townend, Great Britain
The history books could be re-written if Oliver Townend produces a clear round in tomorrow's show jumping, as he will become the first British equestrian to win back-to-back Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event titles.
Just 8.2 penalties separate the top five athletes, which include the World No.1, the 2016 Olympic bronze medallist, the FEI World Equestrian Games™ team gold medallist and the current Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing live contender, so there will be no room for error in what will be a closely fought competition.
Defending champions, Oliver Townend (GBR) and Cooley Master Class, produced a stunning dressage test to finish top of the leaderboard with 24.1 on the second day of the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event. Townend was clearly pleased with his performance finishing with a beaming smile across his face, whilst he waved to the enthusiastic crowd. Shaving three penalties off the previous leader, FEI World Equestrian GamesTM team gold medallist Piggy French (GBR), the score of 24.1 is a personal best for the partnership and proved why Townend is the current World No.1.
“I have had him (Cooley Master Class) since he was a four-year-old, he knows me, and I know him very well. He loved it here last year, he thrived, his ears were pricked every step of the way, so why not bring him back to somewhere he loves.”
“The course is a proper 5*, I am a huge fan of Derek di Grazia’s courses, I think he is an exceptional Course Designer and one of the very best in the world, so I always enjoy coming here to see what challenges he sets. This course is huge, one of the toughest in the world, technical and narrow so it’s going to be interesting to see what happens tomorrow”
USA’s Boyd Martin with the striking black gelding, Tsetserleg, finished as the highest placed US athlete with a score of 27.9 placing third. Great Britain’s Piggy French remains just ahead with a score of 27.1 on 12-year-old chestnut gelding, Quarrycrest Echo.
Tomorrow’s cross-country course set by Derek di Grazia has been described as ‘challenging’ by those who have walked it and will certainly ask some questions to the world-class horse and rider combinations that will be navigating through it in tomorrow’s competition. With many experienced athletes all vying for the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event title this weekend, they will be hoping to not only finish clear, but also inside the optimum time of 11 min 20 sec. The leaderboard remains close with only 8.6 penalties separating the top 10, so there will be no room for mistakes from those currently in the prime positions.
DRESSAGE DAY TWO, FRIDAY 26 APRIL
OLIVER TOWNEND, COOLEY MASTER CLASS - 24.1
PIGGY FRENCH, QUARRYCREST ECHO - 27.4
BOYD MARTIN, TSETSERLEG - 27.9
In his third year as Badminton course designer, Eric Winter has kept his philosophy of making his track look as naturally cross country as possible. There is next to no artifice, seen at many other events, in a flowing journey around Badminton Park.
As usual the ASX Starter flower bed (1) is in the main arena, then riders hang right this year down to the Keepers Question (2) a table over the ditch. Crossing the road they rise to the Little Badminton Gate (3) reached up quite a steep incline and head for Savills Staircase (4 abc 5), a big log parallel, down the two stone steps and a tight left turn to another log parallel away. A bit of an uphill canter and a right turn to the Worcester Avenue Table (6) then back on track to Joules Corners (7/8) of boxed hedges. Next comes the Countryside Log Piles (9ab), a choice of one large one or a double of smaller ones.
A bit of a breather till things start to get serious. The Shogun Sport Hollow (10 ab) has a funnelling pagoda to lead riders to a narrow ‘coffin’ ditch, which actually is coffin shaped, and a left or right choice of chunky, narrow tree trunks out. Now we enter an area of intense action. The KBIS Bridge (11, 12) is a massive parallel over the famous Vicarage Ditch. The double numbering allows for a two jump escape route. The next obstacle has been at Badminton in some form since 1949, the Outlander PHEV Bank (13 ab). Fast route is head on to the top, down, over a narrow brushed roll top.
Next up is a photographic favourite, the Rolex Grand Slam Trakehner (14), a massive log slung over a gaping chasm, then up one of the few real inclines in Badminton Park to the Hildon Water Pond (15 ab), perhaps slightly easier this year, with a roll top in and a log in the water.
A quick let up with James’s Brush (16) and back along the Vicarage Ditch to the Mirage Water (17 abc 18). Despite several options, the direct route involves a corner on the left of a timber box, a right curve over open water and right to another corner on the left of a final box. Heading back to the deer park the next is the Nyetimber Heights (19 ab). Up a steep slope to an airy brush on the top of the mound, down into the dip and up for a choice of four narrow scrubbing brush skinnies. The Feedmark Haywain (20) has featured all over Badminton Park in recent years and takes riders to this year’s charity fence the YoungMinds Brushes (21,22,23), three asymmetric corners in a row.
There is always a considerable crowd round all the fences on the course, but now comes the cauldron of the lake area. First is the World Horse Welfare Lakeside (24). The actual jump is basically a large parallel, but the design, with a pump station, extends over the lake and creates an attractive waterfall. Then it is along the lake to The Lake with L200s (25 abcd). Eric has pulled the brushed up entry log back, so there is now a grass landing before entering the Lake, then a step up and this time the L200 will have a trailer which hosts the jump, a dome shaped Aintree type fence.
Keeping the massive lakeside crowd entertained, the course doubles back to the Wadworth Lower Lake (26) a triple bar approached through the water. The Trade Stands Hedge (27) is a friendly let up before the Voltaire Huntsmans Close (28 ab) which involves a birch parallel to a birch spread corner on a right turn.
To avoid a flat out gallop Eric has the Eclipse Cross Chicane (29 ab), two open ditch brushes on a U bend out and in of the deer park before the HorseQuest Quarry (30 ab) looms. This is less complicated than in recent years. In over the stone wall to a drop then up and out over a second wall.
Nearly home but the Hayracks (31 ab) is a roll top spread to a roll top skinny, then the Rolex Trunk (32) a sculpted log. Back into the arena is the Mitsubishi Final Mount (33), the public competition winning pair of sculpted wooden saddles.
As ever a good completion will be an exhilarating experience for both the old pros and especially for those whose first experience of Badminton this will be.
Further Information: Julian Seaman, Badminton Media Director
+ 44 (0) 7831 515736 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom McEwen and Toledo De Kerser
Defending Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Champion, Jonelle Price from New Zealand and 3 of the 4 British team gold medal winners from the 2018 World Equestrian Games head the entries for the 2019 Badminton Horse Trials, which takes place on 1st – 5th May. Jonelle’s Burghley winning husband Tim is also among the star studded line up, while absentee World Champion Ros Canter, who is due to have her first baby this summer, will be previewing the course for Horse and Hound and also joining in on site commentary.
There are seven previous winners in the field – three from New Zealand – Mark Todd, Andrew Nicholson and Jonelle; one from Australia, Sam Griffiths; and three from Great Britain, Pippa Funnell with a choice of 4 possible rides, William Fox-Pitt who has two entered and Oliver Townend, who will also have to choose two from his four initial entries.
Other notable competitors are the silver and bronze individual medallists from the World Equestrian Games of 2018, Padraig McCarthy from Ireland with Mr Chunky and Ingrid Klimke from Germany with Hale Bob. Ingrid has twice been second at Badminton, in 2006 and 2015, and is keen to add the prestigious Mitsubishi Motors title to her 2017 European Championship and numerous other top finishes around the world.
The victorious British team from 2018 comprises Tom McEwen, Gemma Tattersall and Piggy French, while Tina Cook, who has completed Badminton no less than sixteen times and was highly placed at WEG, has entered three (all riders are restricted to a maximum of two actual starters and must choose their runners before the First Horse Inspection on Wednesday 1st May).
The British challenge is also strengthened by three seasoned competitors at the highest level – Kitty King who rode in the 2016 Olympic team, Harry Meade, part of the 2014 World Championship squad and Nicola Wilson, veteran of countless major Championships.
There were 114 entries in total for this year’s event, resulting in 24 being placed on the Waiting List after allowing for those riders with more than two horses. The Waiting List is determined by points won in top level international events over the past two years.
Eric Winter’s cross country course will be unveiled on the event website, on Cross Country App and to the media on 10th April; while the Draw for starting order is live on Facebook on 15th April. Online advance ticket sales are running at record levels, with the early bird discounts due to expire on 31st March.
The full list of horses and riders entered for Badminton 2019 and the current Waiting List may be found here.
Course designer Helen West will implement significant changes at Nunney International Horse Trials this year.
The redesign is aimed at creating a terrific viewing spectacle, while consolidating the existing courses to give horses and riders a confidence giving test of their cross country skills.
A key difference is that the start and finish will be relocated, thus avoiding a long gallop between the last two fences.
Helen explained: “It will be much more spectator and rider friendly with the penultimate fence at the last road crossing with a short gallop to the last fence. This means there will be a much shorter walk from the lorry park and road crossing down to the start. It also means I will be able to control the speed of the horses at the finish which will help ensure good, accurate jumping right to the line.
“To make up for the shortened course, I plan to take all the courses out into the extra field which has only previously been used in the international classes.”
A new water complex will be located next to the existing Dew Pond giving a variety of jumping options and hedges will be lowered by the main viewing area in the centre of the course enabling spectators to see more of the action.
Helen said: “All these changes are to create a much more user friendly course both for riders and spectators. They are relatively simple tweaks that I think will make a huge difference to both the spectator experience and how the courses ride.”
As usual preparations for Badminton Horse Trials, in their 28th and final year under the record breaking sponsorship of Mitsubishi Motors, are well underway. This may be the 70th anniversary of the first competition but innovations are made with each running.
The Event is now providing an E Ticketing service which should speed up entry to the showground and admission can be bought right up to the day of the event (1st May-5th May).
Entries for the Trials are expected from the victorious British world champion squad and the usual contingent of the cream of the rest of the globe.
For spectators, who turned up in unprecedented numbers in 2018 there are further enhancements. The popular Lakeside area has been revitalised along with the Members and Deli enclosures and the 2018 newcomer to the burgeoning shopping village, The World of Food and Wine is expanded.
The camp site, which now has over 1,300 pitches is complemented just up the road in 2019 by a Glamping field as often seen habituated by the A listers at big music events. This will certainly lend extra style to the Badminton experience.
After a successful premiere in 2018 the fans will be able to submit questions to the top three riders each day on a stage by the Media Centre.
For the very knowledgeable, Badminton has, along with the five other top Events of its type, had its rating upgraded by the international federation the FEI from 4* to 5*, though for practical purposes this will have no effect on Eric Winter’s course, of which he has been the designer for the past two years. Badminton remains the dream of riders the world over.
As ever festivities kick off with the amateurs’ championships the Mitsubishi Motors Cup on the Tuesday and Wednesday.
The Box Office opened to existing customers earlier this week and the ticketing kiosk will be available to all comers on Monday 14th January.
All proposed eventing rule changes for 2019 have been approved by the FEI General Assembly, which concluded today in Manama, Bahrain. The rule changes will come into effect on Jan. 1, 2019.
While there are rule changes impacting numerous different sections of the FEI Eventing Rulebook, here are the most notable revisions below.
Click here to read the full document of proposed, and now approved, rule changes for 2019.
Blood, Whip Use and Yellow Cards
All cases of minor blood on the horse caused by the athlete, either in the mouth or on the flanks from spurs, will be given a recorded warning or stronger sanctions.
Should the same athlete receive more than one recorded warning for a case of athlete-induced blood on a horse within three years, the athlete will automatically receive a yellow warning card.
Two recorded warnings for the same offense will result in a yellow warning card.
Use of the whip has been limited to two times per use. The ground jury can deem multiple excessive uses of a whip between fences as abuse of the horse.
If a horse’s skin is broken or has visible marks, the use of the whip will always be considered excessive.
All cases of excessive use of the whip will automatically result in a yellow warning card or stronger sanction.
Definition of Categories
The new category system approved at the 2017 FEI General Assembly will come into effect on Jan. 1, 2019. CIC will no longer be used to designate the short format. Instead, CCI-L will denote long formate and CCI-S will denote short format.
The new 1.05-meter Introductory level introduced in 2018 will become the new CCI* level in 2019 and can be organized as short or long format in regard to order of the phases and horse inspections.
All other FEI levels will shift up in their star category according to the chart below:
The CCI5* level system will be gradually introduced over the next two years. The current CCI4* competitions — Kentucky, Badminton, Luhmühlen, Burghley, Pau and Adelaide — will all receive the new CCI5*-L category designation in 2019 but must fulfill new requirements over a period of two years to retain the designation.
Minimum level of prize money: €150,000 Euro ($175,000 USD)
Mandatory closed-circuit television for public, athletes, owners and ground jury
A minimum of 30 starters, maximum of 75 starters
11-12 minute cross country course (6,270-6,840 meters in length with 40-45 efforts)
All-weather dressage arena is strongly recommended
CCI5* Yearly Review:
A yearly review will take place to evaluate each CCI5* event in regards to performance against the established criteria. A pr-assessment will take place at the end of 2019, with a formal evaluation at the end of 2020. The Risk Management Steering Group will also be involved in the yearly review to assess the fall rate on cross country and other safety measures.
Starting in 2020, all CCI5* competitions will be reviewed on an annual basis, with CCI5* status renewed or revoked accordingly for the following year.
The FEI has approved the following rule changes in relation to dressage for 2019:
Collective marks will be removed and replaced with one overall mark for “Harmony of Athlete and Horse,” which is scored on a double coefficient.
At 4* championships and 5* level events, if the score of the flying changes varies by 3 points or more from the average of the scores of the other judges for the same movement, the ground jury must review the video after the dressage test on the same day. Adjustments to scoring for the flying changes can be made accordingly.
Only ear bonnets that “allow horses to use all their senses and move freely with the ears” will be permitted.
The FEI has approved the following rule changes in relation to cross country for 2019:
Missing a flag on cross country will now result in 15 penalties instead of 50 penalties if the “horse misses a flag but clearly negotiated the element or obstacle.”
“A horse is considered to have run out (20 penalties) if, having been presented at an element or obstacle on the course, it avoids it in such a way that the body of the Horse fails to pass between the extremities of the element or obstacle as flagged.”
Only official video recording will be permitted as evidence when reviewing penalties. “Officials will clarify before the start of cross country … which video recording will represent the official view to avoid any misunderstanding.”
“Unattached neck straps” will not be allowed on cross country.
Hackamores without bits will not be allowed on cross country.
Show jumping time penalties will now match cross country, with 0.4 time penalties added for every second over the time allowed.
The FEI has made extensive changes and clarifications to the bitting section of the rulebook “to take into account the wide use of snaffles in eventing,” as well as defining the action of bits. You can view the full list of tack and equipment rule changes in Chapter 7, items 43-45, of this document.
The revised Eventing Rules will be updated here shortly.
A new BE Affiliated Event joins the calendar for early August
Running alongside a Country Fair at Glamis Castle
The team at established event centre, Auchlishie Eventing will be putting on a spectacular show in the superb setting of Glamis Castle in August 2019. In addition to affiliated BE eventing, there will be a Country Fair to attract spectators from across Scotland and the north.
Running classes from BE 80(T) up to Novice in the first year and with on-site stabling, this is a great event for the grass roots eventers to come along to. Organiser, James Helyer, says “this is an exciting new venture for us and we could not be luckier with the venue – not only is it a stunning place for an event, but the staff at Glamis could not be more accommodating. The event slots neatly into a gap in the Scottish calendar, so we are hoping for good support from the northern eventing community”.
The cross country courses will be designed by BE A-list Course Designer and Platinum Course Builder Adrian Ditcham, who was the lead builder at the London 2012 Olympics. The courses will wind through the natural parkland and go through the most amazing water complex. Adrian says “the natural features of the parkland will make choosing the route easy – my job will be to ask the right questions in the right places in order to offer a fun challenge to competitors at all levels.”
The main ring will have show jumping throughout the event and a natural amphitheatre gives a great view over the centre of the event.
The Country Fair will take place alongside the horse trials and in addition to an array of tradestands, there will be food and craft tents and other countryside attractions for the public to enjoy. Assistant Organiser, Thomas Helyer says he is “relishing the challenge of putting on this new event and looking forward to working with a new team to provide an event that has something for everyone”.
For further information contact Samantha Wade on 07962 189397 or email@example.com