(USA, 29 April 2012) – William Fox-Pitt (GBR) riding Parklane Hawk, today Sunday 29 April 2012, kept his cool at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, in Lexington, with just one rail down, to win the Event and the second leg of the Rolex Grand Slam. Allison Springer (USA) riding Arthur was second and Boyd Martin (USA) riding Otis Barbotiere was 3rd.
Quotes from William Fox-Pitt after his winning round (links to audio of full interview below):
Q: Many congratulations – what a round: What a relief and what a fantastic horse! It is a great honour and a great pleasure to be here back at Rolex and it’s such a tremendous event – the atmosphere is second to none and it’s been an amazing week for me. A huge relief and lucky I had a fence in hand!
Q: Just tell me a bit about your round today. He’s a super jumper, I think the atmosphere was quite a big deal – he came in a bit tight and tense and yes he rolled a pole but so what – he basically jumped very well indeed. The pressure was on and the course is the Rolex four star and it’s my second leg in the Grand Slam and I’ve never got this close before, but next week is another week mind you, but to be this close is so exciting and what a great way to finish up!
Q: William, how does this compare to winning Burghley last year? Of course winning any four star is fantastic and winning Burghley, which was my sixth Burghley is special but then you come here and its Olympic year so it’s a big year anyway – he’s a horse I believe in – he needed to answer the questions but then for it to be the second leg [of the Rolex Grand Slam] and to be that close I was thinking don’t let it slip away and he didn’t! He’s fabulous and what an amazing horse – I’m very lucky to have the ride on him.
Q: So can I say you are one giant step closer towards that Rolex Grand Slam next week? It is a giant step and I know you were asking that before the competition and I wouldn’t even talk about it but of course it’s a big step – it’s fantastic for me and its fantastic for Rolex, but next week is a big week and this is the closest I’ve ever been – I’ve never got as close as two wins in a row!
Having claimed victory at the 2011 Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials, and now victory at the 2012 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, William is the current live contender for the Rolex Grand Slam prize. Fox-Pitt now faces the daunting challenge of following up his Burghley and Kentucky victories with winning at Badminton next week to claim the $350,000 Rolex Grand Slam Prize.
Please click on the following links for copyright free audio interview with William Fox-Pitt after his winning round:
Here is the link for William Fox-Pitt Rolex Grand Slam part 2!.WMA:
Here is the link for William Fox-Pitt RK3DE winner! 29.4.12.WMA:
For more information on the 2012 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event and full Results/Leaderboard, please visit www.rk3de.org.
Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing
In 2001, Rolex created the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing. This trophy is awarded to the rider who manages to win the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials and the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials event in any consecutive order. Until now, only British rider Pippa Funnell has managed this staggering achievement, winning the title in 2003.
Fox-Pitt was the first British rider to earn Eventing’s Number 1 World Ranking, a distinction he achieved in 2002 and again in 2009 and 2010. He has ridden in three Olympic Games—1996 in Atlanta, 2004 in Athens where he won a team Silver Medal, and 2008 at Beijing where he won a team Bronze. He also won a team Bronze Medal at the 2002 FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) in Jerez, a team Silver at the 2006 WEG in Aachen, and team Gold and individual Silver at the 2010 WEG in Kentucky.
Fox-Pitt is the only rider to have won five of the world’s six Four Star Events, having won Burghley a record six times (1994, 2002, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2011), Badminton (2004), Luhmühlen (2008), Rolex Kentucky (2010) and Pau (2011). He has won the HSBC FEI Classics twice (2008 & 2010) and finished second in 2011. He has won seven team Gold Medals at European Championships and has been the number one ranked British rider nine times.