It's number six for William!
It was another weekend of Fox-Pitt domination at the 2012 Equi-Trek Bramham Horse Trials in Wetherby, West Yorkshire with William taking both the CIC3* and CCI3* classes with Neuf Des Coeurs and Chilli Morning respectively.
In a testing culmination of the CCI3* in the electric showjumping arena on Sunday afternoon, William and his relatively new ride, Friday's dressage leader Chilli Morning rolled a pole adding just 4 penalties to their dressage score of 39.2. William brought Christopher Stone's stallion to Bramham in a bid continue building their partnership and the win, William's sixth Bramham title, shows they are already a force to be reckoned with. The win gives William his 49th three day event victory. The second and third riders clearly demonstrated the value
of jumping clears. In second place was William's former team-mate Pippa Funnell with Mirage D'Elle on 53.8 who climbed from 16th while another Brit, Izzy Taylor leapt up the score board from equal 17th place to finish third on 54.6 with Briarlands Matilda.
The organisers extended the entry list in the CIC3* competition to allow additional opportunity for riders keen to impress their national selectors after extreme rain affected play in early May at major internationals such as the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton and Chatsworth Horse Trials. In a hotly contested class of over 95 combinations, Fox-Pitt added nothing to his dressage score of 38.7 to finish 3.3 penalties ahead of New Zealand's Andrew Nicholson with Nereo who also went double clear to finish on his dressage score of 42.0. In third place was Zara Phillips with High Kingdom finishing on her dressage score of 42.3. After missing much of the spring season due to the weather Zara declared; "We finally got a run! I'm so happy as he's really grown up in the last 18 months and it's great to have the chance to show every one how good he really is."
Fellow horse trials hosts, Bishop Burton College, sponsored the CCI3* class dedicated for riders aged 25 and under with victory being taken by French rider Astier Nicolas with Piaf de Bneville who were second place going in to the cross country phase. British Pony, Junior and Young Rider European gold medallist, Laura Collett dropped from her overnight dressage lead into second place after Noble Bestman rolled a pole in Sunday morning's CCI3* U25 showjumping phase in what is only the horse's third season. Another former British young European medallist, Sarah Stretton took third place in the section up from 13th place with Skip On II. Bishop Burton had more than just a successful class to celebrate when they received the news that they had won the bid to host the 2014 FEI Junior European Championships.
Astier commented; "We got off to a good start in the dressage with a personal best even the ground meant I couldn't ride him as much as I'd liked to. The good thing is I know there is more to come! He was great on the cross country! He's the most genuine horse I've ever had and he has a huge stride so just cruised round. He did tire at the end but he's so generous that he gave what he had and even what he didn't! I really loved the cross country and know I have a special horse as he jumped so well around it - I feel he can go around anything now! It was a real test for him as he is bred to show jump but everything went to plan and I am so happy."
For full results - click here