Michael Jung has overtaken Britain’s William Fox-Pitt as world number one in the latest FEI world eventing rankings.
The German rider took the title following his third place at Luhmühlen’s CCI4* last month on his reigning Olympic champion, La-Biosthetique Sam FBW. William did not compete at the event.
The two men have battled it out for the number one slot this year. William held the crown for a year until May, when Michael, 32, took the title for the first time in his career.
But William’s brilliant Badminton victory on Chilli Morning — his individual bronze medallist from last year’s World Equestrian Games — meant he leapt up to the top spot once again when June’s FEI rankings were released.
Now Michael has seized it once again. As well as his placing at Luhmühlen behind winner Ingrid Klimke (Germany) and Jonelle Price (New Zealand) — who hold fourth and third places in the FEI rankings respectively — Michael had a highly successful journey to the Polish three-day-event at Strzegom.
He finished first and second in the CCI3* aboard FischerTakinou and Halunke FBW, fifth in the CIC2* and second in the CCI1*.
Michael and William are expected to go head-to-head at the Longines FEI European Eventing Championship at Blair Castle in September.
Michael has won the past two European Championships — in 2011 and 2013 — while William is still waiting for his first individual championship title.
He holds a 17-point lead over William, who is in turn 71 points ahead of Jonelle. Andrew Nicholson is in fifth place for New Zealand, while the USA’s Boyd Martin is sixth.
Britain does hold the number one spots in the FEI showjumping and dressage rankings, however.
Charlotte Dujardin is the world’s number one dressage rider, while Scott Brash is still on top of the showjumping leaderboard.
For an exclusive interview with William Fox-Pitt don’t miss this week’s issue of H&H, out Thursday 9 July.