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Britain tops world event rider rankings

British event riders dominate the 2002 FEI World Event Rider rankings claiming five of the top 10 placings

A British event rider has claimed the top spot in the FEI World Event Rider rankings for the first time since their inception 12 years ago.

William Fox-Pitt (pictured) heads the FEI leaderboard with 505 points following his Burghley win and placings at Badminton, Bramham and Kentucky.

Points are awardedat CCIs according to the event’s status and the rider’s final placing with the best six scores over the season counting towards the competitiors eventual ranking.

Although points can be accrued until the end of the year, William looks in an unassailable position nearly 100 marks clear of his nearest rival, Pippa Funnell. Leslie Law and Jeanette Brakewell are fifth and sixth, with Polly Stockton in ninth place.

Interestingly, eight of the top 10 riders are based in Britain, with only Australian Phillip Dutton (8) and the injured Bruce Davidson (10) situated outside Britain.

The FEI World Event Rider rankings have been traditionally dominated by riders from New Zealand and the USA, with Blyth Tait winning five times, Bruce Davidson twice, David O’Connor twice and Mark Todd once.

The closest Britain has come to captured the number one position previously was second place for Mary King in 1997 and Tina Cook in1999. Pippa was the highest placed British rider in last year’s rankings in fourth place.

Read the full story in today’s Horse & Hound (24 October), or click here to subscribe and enjoy Horse & Hound delivered to your door every week.

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