King bounces back at Burghley

Mary King back from injury to ride at Burghley

Mary King still leads the HSBC FEI leaderboard with 28 pionts heading into Burghley Horse Trials this weekend. She has already posted a great dressage score on Apache Sauce who has a great record at the course.

Her top horse King’s Temptress is still to go - dressage 4.15pm Friday.

King is doing well to ride at all and many a lesser sportswoman would be resting. She was partially crushed under Imperial Cavalier when the horse fell during the cross country phase at the European championships.

As the horse got up, King’s foot was momentarily caught in the stirrup irons but she managed to shake it free. She was helped to her feet by medics and was taken to hospital as the oxygen levels in her blood were low. She said:”I was squashed around the kidney area and had some blood in my urine but with a bit of physio and some paracetamol I’m find now.

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“ We had a terrible European championships. The Brits have won gold for the last nine championships and then always flopped at the Olympics. We are hoping that it’s a good omen that we all had such bad luck at the Euros this time!”

Mary had recorded a ‘best of the Brits’ dressage score in Luhmuhlen on ‘Archie’ and had not anticipated problems cross country, but there were plenty of spills and the heavy rain changed the footing during the day. Mary was able to get back in time to be mounted for the medal ceremony in which Britain picked up the bronze medal.

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The competition was dominated by the home team from start to finish.

The Germans not only won team gold, ending the British team’s 16-year reign of European Championship team titles, but their riders also won individual gold, silver and bronze with the reigning World Champions Michael Jung and La Biosthetique Sam claiming the individual European title. The French, whose horses proved faultless in the final show jumping phase, took team silver.

The competition proved a roller coaster of fortune for the British team of William Fox-Pitt (Cool Mountain), Mary King (Imperial Cavalier), Piggy French (Jakata) and Nicola Wilson (Opposition Buzz), who are all on the World Class Performance Programme,supported by UK Sport. Although King came to grief with a fall in the cross country phase, her team mate Fox-Pitt, who was the final team member to ride, managed to defy gravity on two occasions to complete Captain Mark Phillips’ cross country course clear and inside the time.

“We were lucky to be in the running at all after the cross-country,” commented Fox-Pitt. “I did my best to fall off but Mary wasn’t so fortunate. Eventing doesn’t always go to plan and we’ve been beaten by two great teams and given the circumstances we’re very proud to come home with team bronze.

Mary was looking forward to riding King’s Temptress at Burghley and thought that it was an ‘old fashoined’ cross country course with lots of big fences with all the technical elelments at the start of the course.

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