A British young rider has been killed during the Florida International three-day event.
Eleanor Brennan (pictured), aged 21, suffered head and chest injuries when her horse, Mister Barnabus, struck a fence and fell to his death.
Eleanor was rushed to hospital, but died shortly afterwards.
Tom Warriner, chairman of Florida Horse Park said event officials plan to review tapes to determine what caused the fall. “It’s a tragic experience for all of us,” he said.
Eleanor first became involved with horses when her family moved from London to America’s “horse country”, Virginia.
In 2004 she became the youngest rider at advanced level in the US, aged 17. Later that year she came to Britain to train and compete, basing herself at Aston Farm with Mark and Sandy Phillips for a period. Eleanor also studied Equine Business Management at Hartpury College whilst competing her top horse, Bailey Zwei.
During her first year in the UK she clinched 10th place in the Under 25s at Bramham and went on to finish in the top half at Badminton the following year, as the youngest competitor, aged 18yrs.
She had recently returned home to Virginia to join Linda Wachmeister’s Plain Dealing Farm where she did some teaching and accepted a limited number of horses for training and competition.
Eleanor attributed her success to those she had worked and trained with throughout her short career, including Kim Severson, Mark and Sandy Phillips, David and Jacky Green, Gill Watson, Carl Hester and the British team manager Yogi Breisner.
Mr Breisner said: “My condolences go to her family and friends. She was a lovely, charming young lady and a good rider.”