William Fox-Pitt was awarded the Tony Collings Memorial Trophy for the British rider who gained the highest number of points during the season for the third year in succession at British Eventing’s recent awards ceremony.
Another amazing season for William saw him finish in the top 10 on no less than 49 occasions from just 143 competitive outings, including five wins at CIC*** and CCI*** level. He collected a total of 1375 points aboard 20 horses including Stunning, Tom Cruise II and Moon Man.
Jeremy Lawton and Shearwater Insurance Syndicate, owners of Shear L’eau, who amassed 345 points with Leslie Law, received the Calcutta Light Horse Trophy for owning the British horse which gained the highest number of points.
Shear L’eau’s impressive performances during the season included a fifth place at Lexington CCI****, followed by win at the CIC world cup qualifier at Lulworth Castle. This fantastic form lead to his selection ahead of Shear H20 for the European Championships where Britain clinched team gold and Leslie narrowly missed an individual medal. Leslie and Shear L’eau were the only combination to complete Tommy Brenan’s demanding track without time faults to finish bang on the optimum time.
Unsurprisingly, Pippa Funnell played an active role in at least one of the awards when her ride Walk on Star was the British-bred, owned and ridden horse which gained the highest number of points. Walk on Star’s owner and breeder, Barbara Walkinshaw, was presented with the Wide Awake Trophy, after the 10-year-old bay gelding won 334pts during the season to finish second in the rankings.
A highly successful season for Chris King was recognised with the award of the Martin Whiteley Trophy. This trophy is presented each year to the British rider who has gained the most points on one horse, who has never been entitled to wear a Union Jack Badge, and who has not previously won this trophy.
Chris collected 120 points on GNC Contract Services Peaceful Warrior during the season including finishing 13th in their first three-star at Bramham, 7th in the British Intermediate Championships and 28th in the huge entry at Blenheim.
Up-and-coming star Matthew Wright received the Edy Goldman Trophy for the second consecutive year, for being the under-21 rider who gained the most points during the season. A strong string of horses helped Matthew amass an impressive 509 points during the season to finish fifth overall in the BE rankings.
The highest placed British riders at the young rider, junior and pony Europeans received the following awards:
- Sir John Burder Trophy: Abi Walters with Robin Holloway’s Uther Pendragon II
- Hubert Allfrey Trophy: Gemma Tattersall with Janet Ball’s Balfern Milly Molly Mandy
- Jane Rook Trophy: Tara Morrison with Billy Joe Bob
British Eventing also presents annual awards to people who by their outstanding leadership, dedication and responsibility during many years have made a significant contribution to the organisation of horse trials or to the administration of the sport and who have thereby ensured the enjoyment of those who participate. This years British Eventing Awards were given to:
- Hazel and Peter Douglas – involved in the sport for 26 years but most recently ran the dressage phase at Tetton Hall since 1989, retiring this year.
- Jean and William Russell – association in a number of roles with a number of events including Badminton, Brightling Park, Borde Hill, South of England, Syde Park and most recently Charlton Park.
- Sheila Berry – organiser of Downton Castle, Ferney Hall and Berrington Hall and also organises a very enthusiastic start team for one and three-day events including Weston Park and Sansaw.
- Doreen McGawn – 16 years as entries secretary at Auchinleck
- Maggie Jolin – 31 years in a variety of roles at Midlands events including Burghley
- Nick Tompkins – 17 years, also in a variety of roles at events throughout the Midlands
- Cathy Jackson – 15 years as secretary at Blair Castle
- Clem Tomsett – land owner of Isleham
- Francis Blois – 25 years helping with the radio and scoring at Southern events
Honourary Life Memberships were granted to John and Stephanie Lawrence, the retiring regional director for the south and central region and fixtures secretary, as well as retiring Scottish regional director, Peter Crawfurd.
BE also gave special awards to Gale Dale, who is retiring from her job as secretary to the Bramham International Three Day Event after 20 years in the estate office, and Janet Plant, who celebrated 20 years at Weston Park this year.