Pippa Funnell secured a record third win in the CIC3* at the Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials at the weekend (15-17 May).
The three-time Badminton winner led the dressage with 38.5, jumped clear in the showjumping and, despite 18 time faults in the cross-country, retained her lead.
Pippa had been unsure whether to take Sandman 7 across country as he is due to compete at Bramham in a few weeks time (11-14 June), but after consulting her husband, showjumper William, and British team coach Yogi Breisner she decided to run.
“I felt he was ready but it’s so difficult in this circumstance [when you’re in the lead with a young horse] to know what is best because you can either progress the horse or set him back,” explained Pippa.
“It was a gamble, but it’s paid off and I’m so delighted because he is a special horse to our family.”
This is the third time Pippa has won the Derbyshire three-star, having picked up premier position in 2000, with Primmore’s Pride and in 2004 with Supreme Rock.
Ireland’s Sarah Ennis and Horseware Stellor Rebound narrowly missed out on the Chatsworth Trophy.
The pair completed a faster cross-country round than Pippa, but had to settle for second place due to a dressage score of 46.7.
Nineteen-year-old Emily King and Brookleigh finished third and collected the prize for best under-25 rider.
Andrew Nicholson took both the advanced classes with Perfect Stranger and Jet Set lV. It was an eventful day for the New Zealander who fell from Ulises in both the showjumping and cross-country phases of advanced section I.
Crowds swelled across the three days of competition and organisers were delighted with the turnout of approximately 17,000 people.
“It’s testament both to the huge amount of work that the whole team does behind the scenes and to the wonderful setting and exciting competition that Chatsworth provides,” said event director Patricia Clifton.
For full results visit: www.bdwp.co.uk/cha