The last and final day of Burghley – Price on the Podium
Image credit to Burghley Horse Trials – all rights reserved
New Zealand’s Tim Price retained the lead he held after cross country to take the title at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials with Ringwood Sky Boy. Fifth here last year, the pair produced one of just eight clear show jumping rounds to complete on 27.3, ahead of last year’s winners Great Britain’s Oliver Townend with Ballaghmor Class on 31.9 and New Zealand’s Andrew Nicholson and Swallow Springs on 32.1.
2018 has been a year to remember for Tim and his wife Jonelle as this win means the pair now holds the Burghley, Luhmuhlen and Badminton CCI4* titles between them after Jonelle won the two Spring events. Both riders now head off to the World Equestrian Games in the USA as key members of the New Zealand team.
“What a super year,” said a delighted Tim. “Sky Boy deserves a good day – so often we nail two out of the three phases, so to finally pull them all together in a major competition is fantastic. This win means everything and I’m super proud of my horse.”
Tim also finished 10th with the “Young Pretender,” Bango, who also show jumped clear.
Despite being unable to defend his title after lowering a show jump with Ballaghmor Class, Oliver Townend admitted that he was just as proud of the 11-year-old as he has been last year: “It’s all about consistency,” he said. “He’s still only 11 and I’ve been telling people for years how good he is. He’s proved that again today. For me, he turned into a professional this week and dug deep whereas last year he won out of naivety.”
Oliver also filled 12th place with Cooley SRS.
Andrew Nicholson’s clear round on the 10-year-old Swallow Springs elevated them up the leader board from fifth after cross country. They were also the only pair in the field to complete on their dressage score – an amazing achievement in what is the horse’s 4* debut.
“I’m very, very pleased with him,” said Andrew. “He got distracted by the crowds in the show jumping at Blenheim last year where he had three down, and felt a bit babyish at Bramham in the summer, but he was pure class here. He had a look at the TV camera as we came down to the treble but came back to me when I asked him to focus.”
British riders filled the next five places. Sarah Bullimore was fourth with Reve Du Rouet after jumping clear: “I’m over the moon,” she said. “I knew if I kept him focussed, he’d take care of the jumping and he did.”
Piggy French and Vanir Kamira dropped from third overnight to fifth after the mare lowered the gate: “To be honest I think we were lucky to just have one down,” admitted Piggy. “I’m a bit disappointed but top five at Burghley is still a great result.”
Harry Meade and Away Cruising also dropped two places from fourth to sixth after they too rolled a pole. Show jumping is the gelding’s weakest phase and one which Harry has had to work hard to manage: “If you told me at the beginning of the week we’d just have one down I’d have taken that,” he laughed. “He has got much better though which I think is a combination of him growing up and me preparing him in a very specific way.”
Local rider Richard Jones had a fantastic competition and posted his best result to date with Alfies Clover in seventh. The pair rose from 33rd after dressage courtesy of two superb jumping phases: “This results means everything but it’s all about progression and hopefully we can come back in the future and win it,” he said.
Another local rider, Melton Mowbray-based Willa Newton also posted a 4* personal best with Chance Remark by finishing eighth: “I’m still shaking, I can’t believe it,” she confessed. “I’ve never gone so late in the show jumping here and the atmosphere was electric.”
Elizabeth Power was the highest placed Irish rider with Soladoun in ninth.
Land Rover Perpetual Challenge Trophy, awarded to the winning owner. A miniature replica will also be awarded to the owner and the rider of the winning horse: Varenna Allen & Tim Price
Burghley Challenge Cup, awarded to the winning rider: Tim Price
Ceremonial kukri, awarded by The Ghurka Welfare Trust to the winning rider: Tim Price
Henry Tate Challenge Cup, awarded to the owner of the second horse: Val Ryan, Angela Hislop and Karyn Shuter
Sugden Challenge Trophy, awarded to the rider of the second horse: Oliver Townend
Stamford Challenge Cup, awarded to the owner of the third horse: Paul & Diana Ridgeon
Silver photo frame, awarded by Dawson of Stamford Ltd to the rider of the third horse: Andrew Nicholson
Miniature of the Land Rover Perpetual Challenge Trophy, awarded to the highest placed first-timer: Ciaran Glynn who finished 14th on November Night.
Plaques, awarded to all owners whose horses complete the competition, and to any athlete completing who is not the owner of the horse.
Bronze, presented by SHB (GB), awarded to the owner of the highest placed horse sired by an SHB (GB) graded stallion or HIS premium stallion to finish in the top 12: Angela Hislop for Cooley SRS.
Scholarship for two embryos, awarded by Twemlows Stud farm to the owner of the highest placed British domiciled mare to finish in the top 20: Trevor Dickens for Vanir Kamira
Best Shod Horse Award, sponsored by the Worshipful Company of Farriers: Tom Crisp’s Coolys Luxury
Tattersalls, the leading Newmarket-based bloodstock auctioneers, this year sponsored the Horse Care Award that is presented to the groom of the horse considered to have been the best looked after during the four days of the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials.
The groom receiving the award from John Morrey, the Director of Tattersalls, was Janet Willis who looks after Chance Remark, the ride of Willa Newton.
Janet has been a groom for the Newton family for 33-years – before Willa was born – when she was first employed to look after their hunters and point-to-pointers. She began grooming at events with Willa’s sister Chloe and this year was her third Burghley with Willa.
“You have simply got to enjoy what you do, otherwise they are long, days,” said Janet, who also advises planning ahead.
“I have everything organised in advance and I am always early – I hate being in a flap or having to rush.”
Willa and the 16-year-old Chance Remark have risen to 9th place before the showjumping.
“He is an easy horse to look after,” said Janet. “He does everything you want, he eats and drinks and is very relaxed about it all – a lovely gentle giant.”
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