Happy 50th birthday, Pippa Funnell! 16 moments that helped define her stellar career

Today (7 October), legendary event rider Pippa Funnell celebrates her 50th birthday. To mark this special occasion, we round up just some of the highlights from her remarkable career at the top of equestrian sport…

1. Sir Barnaby


Sir Barnaby, who was Pippa’s first horse, launched her career, taking her all the way from the Pony Club Championships to Badminton, Burghley and a win in the four-star at Luhmühlen in 1991.

2. Bits And Pieces

Bits and Pieces Pippa Funnell

Pictured competing at Burghley in 1996, where he was fourth, this diminutive horse won Blenheim CCI3* in 1995 and was ninth at Badminton in 1997 with Pippa.

3. Ensign

WOODSTOCK, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 11: British rider, Pippa Funnell takes part with her horse Ensign in trotting up at the vet inspection on the final day of the Blenheim FEI Petplan European Eventing Championship 2005 at Blenheim Palace on Septemer 11, 2005 near Woodstock, Oxfordshire, England. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)

This former racehorse, pictured at the 2005 European Eventing Championships at Blenheim, was a prolific three-star horse, clocking up several top 10 placings and was also third in the inaugural CCI4* at Pau in 2007.

4. Billy Be Cool

Billy Be Cool, pictured winning the four-year-old Burghley Young Event Horse final in 2008.

5. Supreme Rock


This picture captures the moment Pippa won Badminton on Supreme Rock in 2002.

6. Supreme Rock and a second Badminton victory

Pippa funnell winning Supreme Rock

In 2003, Supreme Rock won Badminton for the second year in a row, which marked the first leg of her Rolex Grand Slam victory.

7. Making history

In 2003, Pippa became the first person to win the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing, thanks to consecutive victories at Badminton (Supreme Rock) and Kentucky and Burghley, where this picture is taken, on Primmore’s Pride.

8. Athens Olympics

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Cavan Pawson/Evening Standard/REX/Shutterstock (963929a) Pippa Funnell In Action Today During The Cross Country Section Of The Three-day Eventing At The Olympic Games In Greece. The Athens Olmpics 20004....pic Cavan Pawson............ Pippa Funnell In Action Today During The Cross Country Section Of The Three-day Eventing At The Olympic Games In Greece. The Athens Olmpics 20004....pic Cavan Pawson............

Pippa and Primmore’s Pride at the 2004 Athens Olympics, on their way to winning team silver and individual bronze.

9. Redesigned

Pictured competing at Great Witchingham, Redesigned won Bramham CCI3* in 2010, among other good three-star results and also jumped round Badminton and Burghley a handful of times.

10. Sandman 7

Pippa FUNNELL (GBR) riding Sandman 7, during the Cross Country phase of the Longines FEI European Eventing Championship 2015 at Blair Castle, in Blair Atholl near Pitlochry in Perthshire, Scotland, UK , on 9th September 2015

Pictured competing as part of the British team at the 2015 European Eventing Championships at Blair Castle, which earnt them a team silver, Sandman 7 also won Chatsworth CIC3* in 2015 and was sixth in the CCI3* at Bramham a few weeks later.

11. Billy The Biz

PIPPA FUNNELL riding BILLY THE BIZ during Cross Country phase of the CIC*** during the Bramham International Horse Trial in Bramham Park, Wetherby, West Yorkshire, UK on 13th June 2015

Pictured bouncing his way to third place in the CIC3* at Bramham in 2016, this result helped secure Pippa another place on the British squad at the Rio Olympics.

12. Rio Olympics

Pippa Funnell Rio eventing dressage

Pippa and Billy The Biz strut their stuff in Rio.

13. Majas Hope

Pippa Funnell riding MAJAS HOPE in the CIC *** Section B during Banbury International at Barbury Castle Estate in the village of Rockly, near Marlborough in the county of Wiltshire in the UK on 9th July 2017

Pictured in the CIC3* at Barbury in 2017, Majas Hope recently made his four-star debut at Burghley where he finished 13th.

14. Billy Beware

Badminton Horse Trials fashion Pippa Funnell Billy Beware

Pippa trots up Billy Beware at Badminton this spring.

15. Billy Congo

Billy Congo and Pippa Funnell in the 1.35m (class 143)

Pippa took over the reins on showjumping stallion Billy Congo this summer. They are pictured finishing third in a 1.35m open class at Hickstead in June.

16. The Queen Elizabeth II Cup

If being a top eventer wasn’t enough, Pippa has also proven herself to be a successful showjumper too. Here she is pictured finishing second in a hotly contest Queen Elizabeth II Cup on Billy Congo at the Royal International Horse Show 2018 at Hickstead.

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