Yet again Oliver Townend, the World number one and leading British points winner, has dominated proceedings in the headline classes at Burnham Market. Due to huge entries from many of the top horse and rider combinations in the world, two sections of Four Star competitors ran today (Sunday), and Oliver led both from pillar to post.
The first win in the bag came from his Burghley 2017 winner Ballaghmor Class. The pair posted 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.
Next up was Cillnabradden Evo who scored 21.3 for the dressage, finishing the day on that score. Both of Oliver’s horses broke the previous Burnham Market record for dressage scores at the level. Laura Collett was runner up riding London 52, five penalties off the pace.
This remarkable performance takes Oliver’s tally of Four Star wins at Burnham Market to 12 since 2007 – the class had to be abandoned last year due to inclement weather.
Commenting on his track record here Oliver said: “The event comes at a good time of year, and I invariably set out to have a competitive run ahead of Badminton. I thought the course was fantastic, the going was good, and the horses ran really well.”
Earlier in the day 21-year-old Lizzie Baugh won the Three Star riding her Young Rider British team horse Quarry Man. “We’ve learnt together – he’s Mr Perfect and always tries to please,” said Newark based Lizzie, who has produced the horse up through the rankings. Lizzie is currently doing a Masters degree in Equine Performance at Nottingham Trent University, but plans to become a professional event rider.
In second and third places were British team gold medallists Tom McEwen and Gemma Tattersall riding Dreamaway II and Arctic Soul respectively, while fellow team gold medallist Piggy French was again in the ribbons, taking fifth place on Calling Card.
Oliver Townend & Cillnabradden Evo © Trevor Holt