Badminton Horse Trials: What the riders said

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Michael Jung with the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing trophy, and his Rolex watch.
Michael Jung with the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing trophy, and his Rolex watch. © Rolex

Comments from the top-place riders at the weekend’s Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials.

Michael Jung, 1st, Sam:

“I just like riding horses; it’s not only my job, it’s my hobby.

“Sam is more than just a good horse to me; we’re a special partnership.

“I need a bit of time for this to sink in, but it is a special moment for me, especially when you think of the history and tradition of Badminton and all the great riders who have won it before.

“We [my family] agreed that we would treat this as a normal competition but now I can realise what it means. It’s not just for me, it’s a win for my whole team.”

[On the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing] “I think this is really special as you know that just only one person has won it before, that says that it is really difficult to win all three events in a row. I am very, very happy and so proud of my horse.”

Andrea Ostholt and So Is Et
Andrea Ostholt and So Is Et. © Rolex

Andreas Ostholt, 2nd, So Is Et:

“It’s like a win for me. My only expectation after two unlucky times at Badminton was to finish in a good way, so this is much more than I could have wished for.”

Britain's Gemma Tattersall rode Arctic Soul into third place.
Britain’s Gemma Tattersall rode Arctic Soul into third place. © Rolex

Gemma Tattersall, 3rd, Arctic Soul:

“I’ve had such a journey with this horse, managing to keep him when he was going to be sold, so this is a dream come true.

“The crowd were amazing; I managed to keep his concentration and he jumped the best round of his life.

“What a fantastic horse – he was still racing over fences when he was six years old. He has been in the form of his life this spring and I knew it was just a case of us competing at the top of our game. He did a personal best in the dressage and he’s finished on that score, so I could not be more proud of him.

“He doesn’t like loud noises; it makes him worried and that’s when he can make a mistake. Arctic Soul has been in the form of his life this year, so I knew we had a great chance, but to be in the top three is beyond my wildest dreams.”

Mark Todd and Leonidas II are the best placed New Zealand combination, in fourth.
Mark Todd and Leonidas II. © Mike Bain

Mark Todd, 4th, Leonidas II:

“He felt amazing today. I don’t think he has had a fence down in a three day, so that gives you confidence (coming into the final day). I was disappointed after the dressage but you have to put that behind you and the horse hasn’t put a foot wrong since.”

Clarke Johnstone is sixth after the cross-country in his first Badminton, riding Balmoral Sensation.
Clarke Johnstone and Balmoral Sensation. © Mike Bain

Clarke Johnstone, 5th, Balmoral Sensation:

“My main goal here was to make a good statement to the selectors ahead of the Olympics and I feel we have done that.

“I am rapt with him. It has been a fantastic experience.”

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