What a year it has been for five-star eventing! From the U.S. to Great Britain, Germany to France, and all the way to Australia, we watched the best in the world go head-to-head for a shot at the throne.
Here’s a recap of who-won what, and how:
Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event
Oliver Townend and Cooley Master Class led the North American five-star from start to finish. They added just 1.2 time faults cross country to their dressage score, finishing on 25.3 penalties and earning their second consecutive win at the event.
“He’s just a very, very cool horse but it was definitely the most pressurizing round that I’ve ever ridden under,” he said. “I was just very happy with the way he performed for me and I’m glad I didn’t muck it up for him.”
Next year’s event takes place April 23-26, 2020.
Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials
A fraction of a second show jumping cost dressage<cross country leaders Oliver Townend and Ballaghmor Class the Badminton trophy and catapulted Piggy French with Vanir Kamira from second into the top spot. Piggy’s win was her first in 25 five-star starts.
“There’s something about her, and those great little mares that just do enough when they need to,” Piggy said. “If they’re on your side, they’re just incredible.”
Next year’s event takes place May 6-10, 2020.
Longines Luhmühlen Horse Trials
Tim Price and Ascona M jumped from second after dressage into the lead after cross country and held onto it through the final phase, ensuring that the Luhmühlen trophy stay in the family another year (wife Jonelle won the event last year with Faerie Dianimo). It was Tim’s third win at the level and his second at the venue.
“These days don’t come around every day, or every year, or every half-century!” Tim said. “It’s been a long, hard road – we have to invest so much time and faith into every horse, but then when you get there, it’s so much fun for everyone.”
Next year’s event takes place June 18-21, 2020.
Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials
It had been 16 years since her last Burghley win and 14 years since her last five-star victory when Pippa Funnell took the win at this year’s Burghley Horse Trials. She and MGH Grafton Street led the event from start to finish, winning on a final penalty score of 30.8.
“It’s been such an amazing journey, and hopefully it will continue, but it’s the horses that have kept me going,” Pippa said. “They keep me young – it’s the belief in the horses, and the belief in their talent. It’s that pure love of the day-to-day graft working with them.”
Next year’s event takes place Sept. 2-6, 2020.
5 Etoiles de Pau
Tom McEwen earned his first CCI5* victory with Toledo de Kerser, leading the event from pillar to post to finish on a score of 25.7.
“I know everyone always goes on about their horse deserving a win, and all that rubbish, but he’s a mega horse and when you’re sat on something like that on the last day… yeah, he sailed,” Tom said. “It’s a horrible thing to say, but it felt easy – he’s incredible. The horse fully deserves it; he’s an amazing horse.”
Next year’s event takes place from Oct. 22-25, 2020.
Mitsubishi Motors Australian International 3-Day Event
In 2019 Hazel Shannon and Willingapark Clifford became the first combination to earn three CCI5* wins at the Australian International Three-Day Event, finishing on 38.7 penalties. This achievement permits their entry into an elite five-member club of horses who are triple winners at the same venue, a club that includes the likes of Avebury and Winsome Adante.
“So much work has gone into this for years, so it is nice for it to pay off,” Hazel said.
Next year’s event takes place Nov. 12-15, 2020.
Until next year … Go Eventing.