A bit brrrr at Burnham Market

      Oliver Townend and Cillnabradden Evo


An Eventful Life filmed all competitors on cross country at

Burnham Market International - find out more here


The weather at the Barefoot Retreats Burnham Market International was freezing cold on Sunday but that didn’t deter the World Number One Oliver Townend from being on red hot form to take both sections of the CCI4*-S.

His two winning horses, Ballaghmor Class and Cillnabradden Evo are both entered for the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials, along with Ulises and Cooley Master Class, but Oliver will only be able to ride two. Cooley Master Class is also entered for Land Rover Kentucky so he had a quiet spin around Burnham before his flight across the pond and is looking in very good shape to defend his USA 5* title while Ulises had already taken second place in the previous day’s Advanced class, putting Oliver in the enviable position of ‘eeny, meeny, miny, mo’ leading up to Badminton

Oliver’s Burghley 2017 winner Ballaghmor Class had a dream run at Burnham, starting with a dressage score of 21.8 to which they added just 0.4 of a cross country time penalty, giving Oliver a four point advantage over runners up Alexander Bragg and Zagreb (26.20), another pair headed to the big event in Gloucestershire and also ones to watch. Badminton has not been happy hunting ground for Alex; he withdrew Zagreb from the second horse inspection after a very good cross country run in 2017 and bravely completed in 2018 after the loss of his second horse Redpath Ransom at the same event. But this result at Burnham Market shows them to be on very good form at the right time so let’s hope it is Alex’s year in 2019


      Austin O'Connor and Colorado Blue out of the An Eventful Life Start Box


Tom McEwen and Figaro Van Ter Broekxhof (28.60) followed up their win at Belton International two weeks ago with a third place in the CCI4* at Burnham Market and Piggy French on Cooley Monsoon, also coming off a win at Belton, took fourth place (29.30) before international riders got into the mix with Sweden’s Ludwig Svennerstal on his Badminton horse Stinger in fifth place and Ireland’s Austin O’Connor on Colorado Blue rounding out the top six

Two Australian riders also had good results on Sunday with Kevin McNab very happy with the less experienced Scuderia 1918 Don Quidam as they finished the cross country. This 11-year-old horse finished just out of the top placings in seventh place, having added just 0.4 time penalties in the show jumping and 4.8 time on cross country.


       Over the last for Kevin McNab "I couldn't be happier with him"


Bill Levett started well on Lassban Diamond Lift with a score of 29.6 in the dressage then withdrew the 11-year-old ‘Sparkles’ who had knocked himself overnight in the box.  Hopefully this is just a minor blip for Bill’s Badminton mount, while Shannondale Titan, who was unlucky at Belton to pick up 15 penalties, took fifth place in the other CCI4*-S class, Section C.

(As an aside from the 4* classes, it was a memorable weekend for the Levett family as son Josh competed in his first Novice competition on board Ballymore Rich Cat, successfully completing in the Open Novice U18 in 20th place. Well done Josh!)

While Bill didn’t get the 15 penalties reversed at Belton, Laura Collett was luckier at Burnham Market with London 52 when she was awarded 15 penalties at the tricky corner at Fence 22B, an area which caused difficulties for several riders on both Saturday and Sunday. Laura’s 15 penalties were removed, as were additional time penalties, and she moved back into second place (26.3) of the CCI4*-S Section C (and so the 50/15/20 penalties review saga continues …… ) while Germany’s Jörn Warner continued his good streak on Vicco Pop, adding third here at Burnham Market on a very good score of 26.9 to their second place in the CCI3*-S at Belton


       Mollie Summerland and Charly Van Ter Heiden


Young guns Emily King and Mollie Summerland were strong contenders in the 4* Section C after the dressage in third and fourth places. Emily show jumped clear on Dargun but 4.4 time penalties on cross country moved them down to fourth while Mollie’s stunning Charly Van Ter Heiden dropped one pole in the show jumping but produced one of only four double clear cross country rides of this class for fifth place.


      Will Furlong (above) and Izzy Taylor (below) before the hold on course


This event was awash with young up and coming talent and, although some may not have had the best result overall, they keep proving they are here for the long haul. Will Furlong and Collien P2 put in a cracking test for a score of 23 and second place after the dressage behind Oliver in the 4* Section B but 8.4 penalties in the show jumping put them out of the top ten.

Will was then one of the riders held on cross country for an extended time after Melanie Wilder and Trefeinon Red Kite took a tumble at 22B; it was a long spell for the horses held on course (luckily the hail didn’t appear as it had a few times during the day) but several riders, including Will and Izzy Taylor on Monkeying Around, had a very cold wait in the Norfolk wind before they were re-started which must have had some impact on their cross country run


      Hang on in there, Felicity!


Another top young rider, Felicity Collins, may not have had the best of weekends results-wise but she won our ‘stickability’ award in the show jumping when Glasker Sweet Clover completely missed the fence, sending Felicity to the moon. Luckily, she landed back in the saddle, hugged the big grey horse tightly around the neck to wiggle back into place and proceeded to jump the next fence without batting an eyelid.

However, it was Lizzie Baugh that was the top ‘young gun’ of the weekend, winning the CCI3*-S on Quarry Man. Our interview with Lizzie coming up soon and we're looking forward to watching Lizzie's full cross country round. In the meantime, here's a little snippet while we're waiting for our full Burnham Market XC Videos to be ready ....

Friday wrap up from Burnham

Saturday wrap up from Burnham

Sunday snippet from Burnham