Jock Paget has completed a phenomenal Badminton-Burghley double on Frances Stead’s Clifton Promise by scooping the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials top prize this afternoon.

This is the first time a combination have achieved the double in a single year since 1989, when Ginny Elliot and Master Craftsman won both events.

The showjumping, designed by Richard Jeffery, proved influential and no one in the afternoon session jumped clear. Jock had 2 fences in hand when he entered the arena and looked like he would be fault-free until hitting the very last fence. But it didn’t matter as he still won on a final score of 41.1.

“There are always nerves when you want to win, but he was jumping well in the warm-up,” said Jock. “I knew I had 2 in hand so I wasn’t too worried — if I’d had 2 down you probably would have seen me start flapping.”

Jock now has the opportunity to go for the Rolex Grand Slam at Kentucky next spring.

Fellow Kiwi Andrew Nicholson was 4.9 penalties in arrears on last year’s winner, Rosemary Barlow’s Avebury, and also took 3rd on Deborah Sellar’s Nereo. Both horses had a single fence down, Avebury the gate at 8 and Nereo the parallel at 11.

“It’s great they are so consistent and shows we’re doing things along the right lines,” said Andrew. “Consistency keeps you at the top and keeps you winning big ones.”

Andrew was also crowed the season’s winner of the HSBC FEI Classics today, although his victory was already in the bag before Burghley. William Fox-Pitt was 2nd and Jock 3rd.

Britain’s William Fox-Pitt and Catherine Witt’s Parklane Hawk finished 4th — their overnight place, although they came in sitting 3rd due to the withdrawal of Clifton Lush — after two parts of the treble at 10 fell. This is this horse’s 3rd top-4 placing here in 3 years.

Ingrid Klimke was thrilled with FRH Butts Abraxxas, who put in one of his very best three-day showjumping rounds with just fence 3 down and was rewarded by moving up from 6th to 5th.

Jonelle Richards (The Deputy), Mark Todd (Oloa) and Andrew Nicholson again (Calico Joe) made it 6 New Zealanders in the top 10 by taking 6th, 7th and 8th. Jonelle and Calico Joe each had 12 faults, but Mark had just 4.

Ludwig Svennerstal had 1 fence down to move up to 9th for Sweden on King Bob, while Tina Cook’s single error at fence 3 with the rising star De Novo News left her 10th and 2nd best of the British.

Nicola Wilson hit the 1st fence with Opposition Buzz and then had 2 more down to drop from 11th to 9th.

Talking about the lack of showjumping clears at the top, Andrew said: “I thought the oxers were a bit higher and wider than sometimes. It’s often the way that there are more clears here in the morning as those horses have gone slowly across country. With the terrain here the horses which went faster are not as supple as at Badminton where it’s flatter. But that’s part of Burghley, you’ve got to ride what you’ve got.”

Buy H&H next week for full 18-page Burghley report, with full analysis, pictures of every cross-country fence and comments from Sally O’Connor, Lucinda Green and course-designer Mark Phillips.

FINAL RESULTS
1. Jock Paget on Clifton Lush (NZL) 41.1
2. Andrew Nicholson on Avebury (NZL) 46.3
3. Andrew Nicholson on Nereo (NZL) 47.3
4. William Fox-Pitt on Parklane Hawk (GBR) 50.3
5. Ingrid Klimke on FRH Butts Abraxxas (GER) 52.2
6. Jonelle Richards on The Deputy (NZL) 59.4
7. Mark Todd on Oloa (NZL) 59.5
8. Andrew Nicholson on Calico Joe (NZL) 60.3
9. Ludwig Svennerstal on King Bob (SWE) 60.7
10. Tina Cook on De Novo News (GBR) 62.4

Full results