Zara Phillips, William Fox-Pitt and Mary King have been selected for the squad representing Britain at this year’s World Equestrian Games in Aachen (24-27 August).
The announcement was made following the first team training session last week. Phillips, who was voted Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year 2005 following her gold medal winning performance at the European Championships, will be partnering Toytown (pictured). With four three-day-event victories, an Open Championship title and 2nd at Badminton, Fox-Pitt had a stunning 2005 season. The senior selectors have chosen Tamarillo as his WEG partner but Fox-Pitt has several other top level horses in his stable and will be trying his luck for the Rolex Grand Slam in 2006.
Mary King will be riding Call Again Cavalier, the 14-year-old gelding by Cavalier Royal. The pair finished third at the British Open Championships at Gatcombe and fourth at Burghley last year. King is delighted with the news, admitting that Call again Cavalier was on tremendous form in the training. “The horses are not a peak fitness,” King explained, “But they were put through their paces by Kenneth Clawson (squad show jumping coach) and Tracey Robinson (squad dressage coach).” Afterwards team vet Jenny Hall gave all the potential WEG horses a thorough medical check.
Despite the excitement, King is disappointed that she will no longer compete at Badminton. “Badminton is one of the main reasons why I do the sport so it is quite a tear. I will now back off on Call again Cavalier’s work and aim for a one day event later in the season – possibly Chatsworth.” Unlike William Fox-Pitt, King only has one four-star horse, “I think William should lend me one of his,” she joked.
The rest of the squad of six will be selected no later than the middle of June.
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