Three top riders withdrawn from European Championship consideration

William Fox-Pitt, Harry Meade and Nicola Wilson have all withdrawn from consideration for the European Championships, owing to injury and fitness issues.

William and Little Fire (pictured), Harry and Away Cruising and Nicola and Bulana have been replaced in the nominated entries for the event in Luhmühlen (28 August to 1 September) by Ben Hobday with Shadow Man, Imogen Murray with Ivar Gooden, and Izzy Taylor with PSH Gazelle.

“Sadly, Little Fire managed to bruise a hind cannon bone after Badminton,” said William. “There is no ligament or tendon damage to be found but he now needs to have an easy time, meaning he will miss any opportunity of Europeans selection.  He is a young horse with lots to look forward to, and I’m hoping the disappointment will be very short-lived.”

Harry said Away Cruising had missed some work, and the championships will “come too soon” for him.

“We’re considering his options for the rest of the season, but with the Olympics next year in mind, our priority is to have him in the best possible form in the spring,” he said. “It’s a great shame, but we’ll be cheering on the Brits at the Europeans next month.”

Nicola said having to withdraw was a “huge disappointment”, for Bulana and her owners, James and Jo Lambert.

“But due to multiple fractures in my neck sustained in a fall from a young horse in Arville, I’m sadly unable to compete for the rest of this season,” she said. “I’d like to thank my owners, the World Class staff, my home staff and my family, friends and the eventing community for all their support, and look forward to getting back out again next season after a busy winter preparing.”

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The updated nominated entries list is:

Alex Bragg with Mr and Mrs Ellicott’s Zagreb

Sarah Bullimore with Christopher and Susan Gillespie and Brett Bullimore’s Reve du Rouet

Laura Collett with her own, Karen Bartlett and Keith Scott’s London 52

Kristina Cook with Elisabeth Murdoch’s Billy The Red

Piggy French with Jayne Mcgivern’s Quarrycrest Echo and Trevor Dickens’ Vanir Kamira

Pippa Funnell with her own and Marek Sebestak’s Majas Hope

Ben Hobday with his own and Jane Chambers’ Shadow Man

Richard Jones with his own, Dinah Saunders and Sandra Martin’s Alfies Clover

Kitty King with Diana Bown, Sally Eyre, Samantha Wilson and Sally Lloyd-Baker’s 10-year-old gelding Vendredi Biats

Tom McEwen with Barbara Cooper’s Figaro Van Het Broekxhof and Fred and Penny Barker, Jane Inns and Alison McEwen’s Toledo de Kerser

Imogen Murray with Aivar Ward and the M S Team’s Ivar Gooden

Gemma Tattersall with the Soul Syndicate’s Arctic Soul and Christopher Stone’s Jalapeno III

Izzy Taylor with Gary Power’s PSH Gazelle

Oliver Townend with Karyn Shuter, Angela Hislop and Val Ryan’s Ballaghmor Class and Angela Hislop’s Cooley Master Class

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