Michael Jung Leads Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event 2016 to Contend for the Rolex Grand Slam

Photo courtesy of Rolex.

28 April 2016, Lexington, USA – Michael Jung riding Fischerrocana FST put in a near flawless dressage performance on Day 1 of the 2016 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event to put himself firmly in contention for the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing prize.

Elizabeth Halliday-Sharp (USA) riding Fernhill by Night are currently in second place behind Jung, with Phillip Dutton (USA) riding Fernhill Fugitive in third place after the Day 1 Dressage. 35 competitors completed their dressage tests on Day 1, with riders represented from seven international nations.

TOP FIVE RESULTS AFTER DAY 1 DRESSAGE

1. Michael Jung (GER), Fischerroncana FST, 34.1
2. Elisabeth Halliday-Sharp (USA), Fernhill By Night, 43.0
3. Philip Dutton (USA), Fernhill Fugitive, 43.1
4. Boyd Martin (USA), Shamwari, 44.6
5. Maya Black (USA), Doesn’t Play Fair, 45.5

ROLEX GRAND SLAM OF EVENTING

Michael Jung has traveled to the Kentucky Horse Park as the new Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing ‘live contender’ and as defending champion of the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by Land Rover.

All eyes are now on Jung to see if he can repeat the form he demonstrated in 2015, by winning this year’s Rolex Kentucky, which will put him one competition away from the coveted USD$350,000 Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing prize.

Speaking after today’s Dressage test, Michael Jung said, “It [Rolex Grand Slam] is on my mind and that is the reason why I take one horse here and one horse to Badminton next week. When we go to the competition we try to win, but at the end of the day you have to listen to your horse. In the cross-country when you have a very good feeling in the warm up and that your horse is really ready and the weather, the ground and the conditions are all good then you can try and go forward.”

HISTORY OF THE ROLEX GRAND SLAM

In 2001 Rolex was inspired to link the three foremost eventing competitions in the world into a Grand Slam. Badminton – the British horse trials on which the modern sport of eventing was founded, Kentucky – the premier US event, and Burghley – the East of England’s showpiece event, formed the competition.

Every year these three events attract world class competition and crowds of enthusiastic supporters eager to bear witness to equestrian greatness. It became immediately apparent that, completing the challenge and winning the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing, would require a series of outstanding performances from a remarkable athlete.

Since its inception in 2001, only one rider has risen to the challenge: Britain’s much loved and highly decorated team member, Pippa Funnell. In April 2003 she rode Primmore’s Pride to victory at Rolex Kentucky, beginning her Rolex Grand Slam campaign. A week later, this time riding double European champion Supreme Rock, Funnell was crowned Badminton winner. A few months later, Funnell reigned supreme at Burghley, riding Primmore’s Pride again, outperforming fellow Rolex Testimonee Zara Phillips, who finished in second place. Pippa Funnell immediately joined the ranks of sporting greats and became a Rolex Testimonee.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Rolex SA
Virginie Chevailler
virginie.chevailler@rolex.com
+41 (0)22 302 2761

Revolution Sports + Entertainment
Rod Kohler
rod@revolutionsports.co.uk
+44 (0)7770 647 662

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