Piggy March takes the lead

  • Piggy March has taken over the lead in Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials dressage in a resounding fashion. She scored 22.6 to claim a margin of four penalties over Pippa Funnell and Billy Walk On’s score for this morning’s best test on this first day of dressage (September 1).

    Piggy had Trevor Dickens’ sometimes tricky 17-year-old mare Vanir Kamira at her best in the arena. The pair scored a 10 from Andrew Bennie in C for his mid-stop save, as well as nines from Andrew and Judy Hancock in E for the canter stretch circle.

    Piggy’s markings only really went down in the cantering 8m circles, where ‘Tilly’ occasionally dropped contact.

    It was an international personal best mark for the 2019 badminton winner across the board.

    “It’s absolutely brilliant – she felt great and I was praying so much for a personal best,” Piggy said. “His days [competing at this level] are numbered. How many more we’ll do with her, God knows, but we’ll let her tell us.

    Piggy admitted she was feeling the pressure today and wasn’t sure she would have Tilly where she needed her ahead of their Burghley Horse Trials dressage test.

    “I didn’t want to let her down, she’s been so solid for me here. It’s such a fine line with her and, to be honest, I thought we were on the wrong side of that line. It was one of the toughest tests I had to do with her here. She was hot and she was sneezing a lot just before entering.

    “She went to her feet for the first stop and she may be feeling a bit grumpy, a bit stuffy. I thought, ‘Is the start of the test behind me?’ I felt like I was on total eggshells, but it didn’t crack the shells. Getting a score of 22.6 for her at this level is incredible.

    Piggy said a win for Vanir Kamira this week would be a “complete fairy tale”.

    “But I don’t care what happens as long as she comes out as a great Burghley horse and finishes well and well. That’s all she owes us these days – but we’ll try,” she said.

    You might also be interested in:

    Keep up to date with all the latest news, behind the scenes info and the best of the action throughout Burghley’s Equestrian Events with no limit on how much you can read from just £1 a week with a Unlimited Horse & Hound website subscription. Register now. Plus, enjoy our full 20-page report on Burghley, including in-depth analysis and exclusive commentary from Nick Burton and Mark Phillips, in next week’s magazine (September 8).

  • Comments are closed.