Eventer Kitty King has withdrawn her Rio ride Ceylor LAN from Badminton to “err on the side of caution and keep him for another day”.
The 10-year-old gelding was found to have knocked himself, possibly in the field or in training, on Monday evening and as some heat was still present in the leg today (Wednesday), Kitty and the horse’s owners decided to withdraw.
“Much as I would love to go, it would be more selfish of me as a rider to take him,” Kitty told H&H.
“He’s sound but [the heat] is not normal for him. There would be extra risk of causing damage that isn’t necessary so I just thought I’d rather err on the side of caution, have him for another day and look to his welfare.”
Kitty said the KWPN gelding, who finished sixth in the Belton CIC3* on 31 March, had been “going as well as ever” in his preparation for Badminton.
“It’s a shame as he’s such a consistent jumper, does a good test and has felt better than ever cross-country,” Kitty said.
“We were hoping and praying he might get there, but decided to withdraw now to give someone on the waitlist the chance to go.
“He’s been a fabulous horse so far and hopefully he’ll have another four or five years of being a top horse at the top level and I want to give him every opportunity.
“It’s one of those annoying things with horses, but the main thing is that we’ve got him for another day.”
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Ceylor LAN will now have a “quiet few weeks” to recover fully before plans for the rest of his season are made.
Don’t miss our bumper Badminton preview issue of Horse & Hound magazine including William Fox-Pitt’s thoughts on every fence on the cross-country course (on sale 27 April 2017), our pull-out form guide featuring all the riders (on sale 4 May 2017) and our special in-depth report on all the action, complete with expert analysis (on sale 11 May 2017).