Olympic rider scores emotional win on horse whose rider died in cross-country schooling fall

  • Home side rider Boyd Martin scored an emotional win in the big money showcase eventing competition in the USA last weekend. He took top spot in the Grand Prix Eventing at Bruce’s Field in Aiken, South Carolina, on Fedarman B, who had belonged to Annie Goodwin, who died in a cross-country schooling accident last summer.

    Fedarman B, known as “Bruno”, now belongs to the Annie Goodwin Syndicate and Boyd – who used to coach Annie – took over the ride in the autumn of 2021.

    After his win, Boyd said: “What a privilege to ride this horse. Annie was so special to so many people especially in this community and then to bring the horse here and her fiancé and mom, dad, all her best mates are here, and the horse on top of that went like a champ… I couldn’t have hoped for better.”

    Before the start of the cross-country, Annie’s loved ones gathered in the main arena for a moment to celebrate and reflect on her life. Originally from Buffalo, Wyoming, Annie lived and ran a successful equestrian business in Aiken, local to the event.

    She volunteered as a member of the organising committee for the Grand Prix Eventing and competed at the March 2021 fixture.

    Grand Prix Eventing at Bruce’s Field: Annie Goodwin’s loved ones with Boyd Martin

    Boyd Martin with Annie Goodwin’s loved ones. Credit: Christine Quinn

    Boyd dominated the leaderboard from the off this time, but initially held pole position on Tsetserleg TSF, his ride at the Tokyo Olympics last summer, who scored 23.7 in the dressage. But Tsetserleg added one rail down in the showjumping as well as finishing a second over the time in both jumping phases and so dropped to second.

    Fedarman B finished on his first phase score of 25.9 to move up a place for victory.

    Doug Payne, who was Boyd’s team-mate at the Tokyo Olympics, landed third on Quantum Leap, who moved up from 15th after dressage by keeping a clean sheet in the jumping phases.

    William Fox-Pitt was the only British rider in the Grand Prix Eventing at Bruce’s Field, which has a prize fund of $50,000 (approximately £36,700). He finished 16th riding a borrowed horse, Sara Kozumplik Murphy’s Rock Phantom.

    William was also part of second-placed “Team Green” – the riders are placed in teams, with each representing a charitable organisation and the top three earning cheques for their charities. William’s team rode for Megiddo Dream Station, which provides intensive bible-based job and personal skill training to help people move into work.

    In addition, fans can pay $5 to vote online for their favourite team and this money goes to the charities – Team Green was the most popular team, with $1010 raised in this way.

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