“This is my eleventh Badminton, so it is about time I went first!” First drawn Paul Tapner tells us how it is…
Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials launches on Tuesday 5th May with the Grassroots event. Wednesday 6th May sees the Dubarry Burghley Young Event Horse Class and the first Horse Inspection for the main event – Thursday 7th May and Friday 8th May are dressage days, with Saturday 9th May seeing XC day, and Sunday 10th May concluding with the show jumping and presentations.
WOW Saddles is proud to be sponsors of some elite riders contesting the trophy this year – we speak to Paul Tapner about his plans:
Paul Tapner is a veteran of ten Badmintons already; 2015 will be his eleventh, and he has got one victory to his name already, winning in 2010 on Inonothing. He is drawn first to go on Kilronan, his WEG mount, who was leading at Badminton last year until he rolled a pole in the final phase. “This is my eleventh Badminton, so it is about time I went first! Kilronan has plenty of experience, and he will get the best of the ground. Also, because he did so well last year, he will probably not be disadvantaged by being first in the dressage, where sometimes you can be a victim of the judges being cautious,” Paul explains. In complete contrast to Kilronan, Paul’s other ride Indian Mill, is starting at his four star. “I would have liked the [new] course to be as it was last year for him; he is a great horse cross country, but it looks to me like the course has been ‘softened’ from 2014, which is a pity. In fact, I think that [course designer] Guiseppe (de la Chiesa) has been really unimaginative with his changes. Mostly, he has just reversed the course without changing the fences much. Of course, I might be eating my words on Saturday night,” laughed Paul. Indian Mill has plenty of good 3* form, including 3rd at Blenheim and 4th at Gatcombe, both, as it happens behind fellow WOW representative, Francis Whittington!