Burghley Form Guide – Eventing Worldwide’s guide to the contenders
1 September 2015
5 minute read
This year’s Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials will be contested by 80 horse and rider combinations from eight nations in what promises to be a thrilling competition.
In the absence of three time winners Andrew Nicholson and Avebury, the form book is wide open. So Eventing Worldwide is bringing you its guide to the main contenders for the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials title.
Germany’s Michael Jung is making is Burghley debut, and will be expected to be in the running come the show jumping on Sunday. He has won most of the glittering prizes on offer in the sport but until now has not taken on the Burghley challenge. To Burghley he brings fisherRocana FST, a world team gold and individual silver medallist last year, and his Olympic, world and European champion La Biosthetique Sam. With this serious horsepower he should not be discounted.
Great Britain’s William Fox-Pitt is a Burghley specialist, having won here six times. He only has one ride this year on Fernhill Pimms. The horse is making its four star debut at Burghley but has a promising background having won the Intermediate championship at the Festival of British Eventing and the 8/9 year old CIC*** at Blenheim in 2013 and has a string of strong three star results this year.
Sir Mark Todd (NZL) is another Burghley specialist having won her on five occasions. The great Kiwi horseman has been enjoying a stellar season and must have an excellent chance here on Leonidas ll, who was fourth at Badminton in May.
New Zelanders Jonelle and Tim Price have one ride a piece – Jonelle brings Classic Moet whilst Tim rides Ringwood Skyboy – but neither should be discounted from making a challenge.
Australian Sam Griffiths has two shots at the title. He brings previous Badminton winner Paulank Brockagh and Happy Times, who was third hear last year. Both are strong contenders to take Sam to his first Burghley win. Another on form Australian is Sam Griffiths who brings his Festival of British Eventing Open winner TS Jamaimo.
There is a strong British contingent vying for the title. Amongst these are former winners Pippa Funnell and Oliver Townend.
Pippa has the choice of three rides – Second Supreme, Mirage D’Elle and Redesigned. Mirage D’Elle competed at Burghley back in 2011 and has good form at three star level since then most recently coming fourth at Strzegom in Poland. Redesigned has four star form – he was 12th at Badminton earlier this year and last competed at Burghley in 2013 when he was 16th. Second Supreme put in a great performance at Badminton earlier this year and would another horse at the top going into the show jumping.
Oliver, who won in 2009, has entered Paul & Diana Ridgeon’s Armada – 8th here last year – who has the talent across the country but is not the easiest horse to show jump. Oliver will also be the pathfinder on Dromgurrihy Blue – the former ride of Harry Dzenis and a horse who completed here last year.
Lucy Wiegersma and Mr Chunky are another pairing to look out for. Lucy is returning to the saddle following the birth of her son Tomas in April. They warmed up for Burghley with a win in the CIC** at Bicton Arena last month. She told Eventing Worldwide after the win that winning was a great note to set off to Burghley on: “He is an out and out Burghley horse and I’m really looking forward to next week. I knew I hadn’t lost my nerve, but I felt I’d lost my competitive edge and lacked a bit of self-belief. It was just the tonic I needed.”
Nicola Wilson should also not be discounted as a contender. She rides Annie Clover and One Two Many, who both have strong form at this level. Annie Clover was 8th when the pair travelled to America for the Rolex Kentucky Three day Event and One Two Many was seventh at Badminton and went on to win the three star at Burgham International in July. Both horses could bring Nicola her first Burghley triumph.
The partnership of Sarah Stretton & Skip On will be aiming to make history at Burghley by becoming the
only Lincolnshire horse to complete the Four Star. This horse has a strong record across the country and is on course to achieve this feat in style.
With many European riders saving their top horses for the European Championships at Blair Castle the following week, the chase for the title is wide open. It’s anybody’s bet as to who will come out on top come Sunday.
Eventing Worldwide will be brining you all the action from the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. Subscribe for as little as 99p a month to have access to all the news at www.eventingworldwide.com.
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