Four top-20 contenders withdrawn from Badminton Horse Trials

  • Four horses who could have finished in the top 20 at the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials have been withdrawn from the event in the past few days.

    Canada’s Rebecca Howard has withdrawn Riddle Master, with whom she finished 10th at the Rio Olympics last year, after a fall at fence 13 in the advanced class at Burnham Market last weekend.

    “Riddle Master came into this season feeling super, but the eventing gods were not with us in the lead-up to Badminton,” Rebecca told H&H. “Skin infections and a foot bruise left us short of runs and then we had an uncharacteristic fall at Burnham Market. We are both fine, but sadly Badminton was not meant to be this year.”

    Australia’s Bill Levett has pulled out Alexander NJ as he has a minor injury. The chestnut gelding was sixth on his CCI4* debut at Luhmühlen last year and earned the Aussie reserve slot for Rio, although a pulled muscle prevented him from actually travelling.

    Britain’s Emilie Chandler was due to bring forward Coopers Law for his Badminton debut after 21st at Burghley in 2015. However, last week she said on Facebook that she had had to withdraw him “due to a minor setback”.

    Bayro, ridden by Dutch rider Tim Lips, is the latest high-profile withdrawal. They were 21st at the Rio Olympics and third in the competitive CIC3* at Luhmühlen earlier last year.

    Horses down to 12th on the wait-list have now been accepted to run at Badminton, with Lissa Green — daughter of six-time Badminton winner Lucinda — the most recent rider to receive notification they have the chance to compete.

    Continued below…

    More Badminton news:

    The next person down on the wait-list, US rider Bunnie Sexton (Rise Against), has withdrawn. Twenty-two pairs remain on the wait-list and they can be accepted until 2pm on Sunday, 30 April.

    Don’t miss H&H’s Badminton preview in 27 April issue (course walk with William Fox-Pitt, plus we find out how it feels to be on the wait-list) or essential pull-out in 4 May issue (full form guide, course map, dressage test and more).

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