William Fox-Pitt scored a double-edged victory this weekend, not only winning The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials, but also being crowned the inaugural winner of the British Eventing Premier League Championship.
William lead the field throughout Burghley, lowering two show jumps to add just eight penalties to his dressage score of 42.4, finishing 2.7pen ahead of Australia’s Phillip Dutton.
The win gave William 40 points for the Premier League accumulator, taking his final score to 104, a massive 61 points ahead of runner-up Andrew Hoy, who was sixth at Burghley with Mr Pracatan. Andrew Nicholson came third in the Premier League, finishing on a score of 33.
The British Eventing Premier League is designed to link the sport’s top showpiece events (Badminton, Chatsworth, Bramham, Gatcombe, Thirlstane, Blair, Burghley and Blenheim) with riders placed in the top 16 accumulating Premier League Points. A £5,000 stake has been allocated to the highest point scorer.
Blenheim was omitted from the league this year because it is hosting the European Championships, but will be included next year.
Fox-Pitt’s unbeatable accumulator run began in May when he finished second in the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials. Wins at Bramham Park and The Festival of British Eventing at Gatcombe, guaranteed him the title even before his recent Burghley win.
The presentation of the cheque for £5,000 and the Nebuchadnezzar of Champagne Taittinger will be made at the BE Ball – Jive ’05 – at The International Centre, Telford on Saturday 19 November.
Final Premier League Standings
1. William Fox-Pitt 104
2. Andrew Hoy (AUS) 43
3. Andrew Nicholson (NZL) 33
=4. Pippa Funnell & Caroline Powell (NZL) 31
6. Mary King 27
7. Phillip Dutton (AUS) 24
8. Terry Boon 22
=9. Bettina Hoy (GER), Francis Whittington, Polly Stockton & Louise Skelton 20