William Fox-Pitt, the H&H columnist and recent European Eventing Championship team gold medallist, will head the British riders competing at Boekelo three-star international event (5-9 October).
Fox-Pitt was suspended from competing for three weeks after being knocked out in a fall at Gatcombe Horse Trials, but has had his suspension lifted early in order to compete. His suspension ruled him out of competing at Kreuth in Germany last weekend where Mary King proved an able deputy for him on Sir Michael Turner and Jane Walter’s Birthday Night and finished second.
Like every rider who is suspended, Fox-Pitt had to pass psychometric tests before getting the go ahead to compete again. After seeing the test results Peter Whitehead, the British Olympic Association doctor, gave permission for the Burghley winner to ride in the three-star event at Boekelo in Holland this weekend. The Boekelo event starts within his original 21-day suspension period, although the cross-country day falls on the first day outside this period.
Fox-Pitt said: “This is the first time I’ve been suspended and it’s frustrating when you feel fine. But I think it’s a good rule — it exists to save us from further and more serious injury.
“The psychometric tests involved arithmetic and tests for balance, reaction and memory — to be honest I think it would be quite easy to fail them on a normal day.”
Fox-Pitt will ride Mr Dumbledore and Coastal Ties at Boekelo, an event he won in 2003 riding Sue Somner’s Tom Cruise II. British team regular Pippa Funnell will be riding the bronze European medal winning Walk On Star and the promising Rock King-sired youngster Chamrock, while Jeanette Brakewell will be in action with Alistair Holder’s stallion McGuigan.
British Boekelo entries