Piggy tops Event Rider Masters podium at Chatsworth

      Photo courtesy of Event Rider Masters

An Eventful Life filmed all non-ERM competitors on cross country at

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In week that has seen two mums, both with very young children, win two of the most coveted prizes in the sport of Eventing, record crowds gathered at the Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials where Britain’s Piggy French and her horse Quarrycrest Echo headed up the all-female Event Rider Masters podium in the first leg of the 2018 Series.

Setting a personal best in the dressage, delivering a clear show jumping round this morning and becoming only the sixth person out of 1460 riders in the history of Chatsworth CIC3* to make the time across the country, Piggy French landed her first CIC3* win since 2014.

‘I am so over the moon,” said a delighted Piggy, an ambassador for Dodson & Horrell who was the quickest of the whole class on Quarrycrest Echo. It was the Maidwell, Northamptonshire-based rider’s biggest win since returning to competition after the birth of her son Max 20 months ago.


      Piggy and Quarrycrest Echo


‘I sat in my wagon waiting for my turn and said to myself “Come on, do something useful”! Above all, my horse deserves a great day like this.’

And so they did - their finishing score of 27.3 is the second-best finishing score in this class at the venue.


      Sarah Ennis and Horseware Stellor Rebound           Photo courtesy of Event Rider Masters


It was a good weekend at Chatsworth for Irish riders with Sarah Ennis, winner of the Dodson & Horrell Challenge back in 2014 on Horseware Stellor Rebound, returning to finish second in the Event Rider Masters ahead of Britain’s Izzy Taylor (Call Me Maggie May) and Laura Collett (Mr Bass).


      Izzy Taylor and Call Me Maggie May                 Photo courtesy of Event Rider Masters


Over-night leaders after the dressage, Laura Collett (GBR) and Mr Bass had an unfortunate 4 faults in the show jumping after they rolled one of the coloured poles. Adding just 6.4 time penalties to her score after the cross country, Collett came a very respectable fourth place and bagged herself strong ERM Series points.

Fellow mum and freshly crowned 2018 Badminton CCI 4 star Champion, Jonelle Price, made it 50 CIC3* completions since 2008 and maintained her perfect 11/11 (100%) cross country jumping record with Faerie Dianimo.

Wills Oakden was best male rider in eighth place, just ahead of William Fox-Pitt, a perennial, popular rider at Chatsworth, in ninth place.

William and his “old friend” Bay My Hero put in a stellar performance to land them an ERM top 10 finish, his first since the Masters began. Speaking after his cross county William said, “The Event Rider Masters is the most exciting thing to happen to the Sport of Eventing in my time – and that is saying something.”


      Photo courtesy of Event Rider Masters