The eventer who died at Somerford Park yesterday (Sunday 18 August) has been named as New Zealand rider Tom Gadsby.

Tom, who was 26 years old, was fatally injured in a fall on the cross-country course at Somerford Park Horse Trials in Congleton, Cheshire. He was pronounced dead at the scene. British Eventing confirmed to H&H that it was a rotational fall.

The remainder of the event was abandoned.

The Kiwi rider (pictured at Great Witchingham with Cadillac) had been competing in the UK since last year and was based with Tiny Clapham near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire.

He had previously competed up to intermediate level in eventing in his native New Zealand before concentrating in showjumping. He then decided to switch back to eventing in 2012.

Tom was riding 7-year-old skewbald gelding The Drover in the 1-star class when he fell at fence 4B. The horse was unhurt.

“On behalf of Equestrian Sports New Zealand (ESZN) members, I express our sincerest condolences to Tom’s family and close friends,” said Jim Ellis of ESNZ.

“Tom was a talented showjumper and eventer who was in Europe to fulfill his dream of competing as a professional event rider — a dream he achieved, but which has been tragically cut short.”

British Eventing’s Mike Etherington-Smith added: “Our thoughts and prayers are with Tom’s family at this really sad time.”