Paul Tapner’s horror rotational fall at Badminton

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Paul Tapner and Bonza King of Rouges come to grief at Badminton.
Paul Tapner and Bonza King of Rouges come to grief at Badminton. © Mike Bain

Mike Bain was on hand to capture this sequence of Australian rider Paul Tapner in a rotational fall on the cross-country at the Badminton Horse Trials.

Dozens of spectators looked on in horror as the past winner hit the turf when Bonza King of Rouges caught a hoof on a jump and somersaulted over. Tapner’s leg appeared to be caught under the horse, but miraculously, both walked away.

© Mike Bain

Tapner said later he and King were both safe and sound after the unscheduled dismount. “King and I are perfectly OK after our acrobatics especially thanks to protection kit,” he said.

Earlier in the day British rider Emily Gilruth, 40, was airlifted to hospital by helicopter after falling from Topwood Beau at the third fence. She is in intensive care.

An event spokesman said there were no reports of injuries to horses at the event, however, Shane Rose’s horse Shanghai Joe slipped on gravel and injured a forelimb after falling at fence 19 and galloping back to the stables. He was stabilised at the event’s veterinary centre by an orthopaedic specialist before being transferred to Breadstone Veterinary Hospital for further assessment and treatment.

Update: Badminton accident claims life of Australian eventer Shanghai Joe

» Full report

© Mike Bain
© Mike Bain
© Mike Bain
© Mike Bain
© Mike Bain
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3 thoughts on “Paul Tapner’s horror rotational fall at Badminton

  • May 7, 2017 at 7:22 pm
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    No reports of injuries to horses at the event? Um, Shane Rose’s horse Shanghai Joe fractured his shoulder on the gallop home to the stables.

    Reply
    • May 8, 2017 at 12:54 am
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      Yes, it appears so, but it wasn’t an injury suffered while completing the course. Doesn’t make it any less sad for the horse and rider… but it’s unfair to insinuate that it was a consequence of the event.

      Reply
    • September 25, 2017 at 12:59 am
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      I have to agree: my suspicions are that no one ever talks about lethal horse injuries because it would detract from public perception of the sport. Then, there would be no glory to pursue. As a former eventer I feel the extremes of cross-country border on cruelty.

      Reply

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