GREAT BRITAIN (by Kate Green/press release) Britain’s William Fox-Pitt re-wrote the record books when he became the first rider in history to win a CCI4* riding a stallion. The pair jumped a magnificent clear round in the final phase with Christopher Stone’s Chilli Morning (Phantomic xx - Koralle x Kolibri) to capture the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials, fourth leg of the FEI Classics™ 2014/2015. Bred by Rainer Schicketanz, Chilli Morning is a Brandenburger, licensed by Sport Horse Breeding of Great Britain (SHBGB).
The popular German rider Ingrid Klimke finished runner- up by just 1.2 penalties on her new star Horseware Hale Bob (Helikon xx - Goldige [Oldbg] x Noble Champion [Oldbg]), and New Zealander Jock Paget was third on the New Zealand Thoroughbred Clifton Lush (Half Iced xx - All For Love xx x Le Grand- Seigneur xx), a great achievement on a horse coming back after a year’s lay-off for injury. The finale could not have been more tense, with three penalties – less than the cost of a rail down – covering the first five riders, and all attention on the great Kiwi rider Andrew Nicholson aiming to win Badminton for the first time in 31 years of trying.
Paget, lying fifth after the cross country, eased the pressure on his rivals when Clifton Lush hit the 11th fence to pick up four faults. Klimke, next into the arena, was immaculately prepared, having been competing her German Thoroughbred gelding in jumping classes over the winter months, and they produced a confident clear.
Next to go were the 2014 runners-up, Oliver Townend (GBR) and Armada (Fines - Berganza 18 x Golfi), but the Yorkshireman had humorously predicted that he wouldn’t be taking home any trophies as the 16-year-old gelding is notoriously difficult in this phase. Four fences down dropped the pair to 11th. Coincidentally, Armada is a full brother to Nicholson’s Nereo – the top eventing horse in the WBFSH/FEI Worldwide Horse Rankings for 2012/2013 – both Spanish Sport Horses (CDE) bred by Ramon Beca...