William Fox-Pitt needs to win next year’s Badminton Horse Trials to clinch the Rolex Grand Slam, following the cancellation of this year’s event, Rolex has announced today.
It had been unclear whether the third-leg of the Grand Slam would be Burghley this autumn (30 August-2 September) or Badminton 2013, but Rolex has now confirmed that William must wait a further 12 months to see if he can claim the £215,000 ($350,000) bonus prize.
The roll-over also means that William could be challenged for the Grand Slam at the same event if any other rider consecutively wins this year’s Burghley and the 2013 Rolex Kentucky.
The Rolex Grand Slam is on offer to any rider who wins in succession the three premiere CCI**** events – the US’s Rolex Kentucky, the UK’s Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials and Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials.
The three events must be won in succession, but don’t have to be won on the same horse or in a calendar year.
The Grand Slam has only been won once – by Pippa Funnell in 2003, after she won Badminton, Kentucky and Burghley in one amazing year.
In 2006 Andrew Hoy almost did it when he won Kentucky and Badminton in the spring and led going into the show jumping at Burghley, but faults there dropped him to second.
And Oliver Townend got tantalisingly close in 2010, dodging the Icelandic ash cloud to get to Kentucky, only to suffer a crashing fall with Ashdale Cruise Master.