Piggy French jumped a double clear round on the final day of the London 2012 Olympic test event at Greenwich, London to give Britain a welcome victory ahead of next year’s Games.
Riding DHI Topper W, Piggy led the invitational CIC** from start to finish and completed on her dressage score of 34.7, comfortably ahead of second-placed Michael Jung from Germany.
“It’s great to put a British stamp on Greenwich – now I want to come here and be on top again,” said Piggy. “This horse has come on so much in the past couple of months that he could be a contender for here next year.”
Michael Jung also jumped two clear rounds – the organisers followed the Olympic format of two showjumping rounds to decide the team and then individual medals – on River Of Joy to end on 41.8.
Britain scored another place on the podium when Pippa Funnell rose from fifth to third with a double clear on Billy Shannon.
“I’m thrilled to bits with her,” she said. “The whole event has been fantastic – the vibes from everyone are so positive.”
Fourth was Clayton Fredericks for Australia, riding the experienced Bendigo, who lowered a pole in the first round but jumped clear the second time.
Sweden’s Sara Algotsson Ostholt was fifth on Mrs Medicott on 46.6 with a fence down in the first showjumping round but a clear with one time-fault at the second time of asking.
Virginie Caulier (Belgium, Nepal Du Sudre) finished sixth on 50.8, ahead of Italy’s Vittoria Panizzon, who rose from 22nd after dressage to seventh, adding nothing to her 56.4 dressage mark on Borough Pennyz. Ireland’s Joseph Murphy also kept a clean sheet to stay on 58.6 for eighth place.
The eventers seemed happy with the arena surface, which several showjumpers, who rode in a two-round competition in the morning to test the venue, were not, describing it as “heavy” and “dead”.
Tim Hadaway from the organising team said: “That’s why we were here – to test the conditions. We have taken these comments on board and will work with the contractor and the specialists we have to improve that for next year.”
1 Piggy French (GBR) on DHI Topper W 34.7
2 Michael Jung (GER) on River Of Joy 41.8
3 Pippa Funnell (GBR) on Billy Shannon 44.9
4 Clayton Fredericks (AUS) on Bendigo 46.1
5 Sara Algotsson Ostholt (SWE) on Mrs Medicott 46.6
6 Virginie Caulier (BEL) on Nepal Du Sudre) 50.8
7 Vittoria Panizzon (ITA) on Borough Pennyz 56.4
8 Joseph Murphy (IRE) on Chuckelberry 58.6
9 Donatien Schauly (FRA) on Pivoine Des Touches 60
10 William Fox-Pitt (GBR) on Gaucho 60.3
More about the test event in H&H this Thursday, 7th July issue, and next week, 14th July issue.