Team GBR sends a talented squad to defend its European gold medal
The British Equestrian Federation has today, 2 August 2019, announced the UK Sport National Lottery funded eventing squad which will compete at the FEI Longines Eventing European Championships in Luhmühlen (28 August – 1 September 2019).
Two of the riders who helped to propel Team GBR to team gold at the World Equestrian Games in 2018, Piggy French and Tom McEwen, will return for the European Championships in Luhmühlen.
They’ll be joined by Oliver Townend and Tina Cook, both part of the gold medal-winning team at the previous European Championships in 2017, while Laura Collett and Kitty King round out the squad after a season of strong results.
In alphabetical order, the selected squad has been named by British Eventing selectors as:
- Laura Collett with Karen Bartlett, Keith Scott and her own London 52 (Groom – Zanie King)
- Kristina (Tina) Cook with Elisabeth Murdoch’s Billy The Red (Groom – Rachel Tolley)
- Piggy French with Jayne McGivern’s Quarrycrest Echo (Groom – Amy Phillips)
- Kitty King with Diana Bown, Sally Eyre, Samantha Wilson and Sally Lloyd-Baker’s Vendredi Biats (Groom – Chloe Fry)
- Tom McEwen with Fred and Penny Barker, Jane Inns and Alison McEwen’s Toledo de Kerser (Groom – Lucy Seddon)
- Oliver Townend with Angela Hislop’s Cooley Master Class (Grooms – Suzanne Cooper and Charlotte Hollyfield)
Piggy French and Oliver Townend have also each been selected with a direct reserve horse, Piggy with Trevor Dickens’ Vanir Kamira and Oliver with Karyn Shuter, Angela Hislop and Val Ryan’s Ballaghmor Class.
Four immediate reserves have also been selected. In alphabetical order by rider surname, they are:
- Alex Bragg with Philip and Sally Ellicott’s Zagreb
- Sarah Bullimore with Christopher and Susan Gillespie and Brett Bullimore’s Reve de Rouet
- Pippa Funnell with Marek Sebastak and her own Majas Hope
- Tom McEwen with Barbara Cooper’s Figaro van het Broekxhof
I am very excited about the squad selection, which includes four senior gold medallists from recent championships. It allows Team GBR to be competitive while still investing in the future, with several horses receiving their first team call-up.
While Tokyo 2020 qualification is already secured, this European Championships is an important part of our Olympic preparations, so I’d like to thank all the riders and their owners for making their horses available for selection. Performance Manager Dickie Waygood
The selected grooms said:
Chloe Fry (Kitty King and Vendredi Biats): “It was such a shock when we got the news. Vendredi Biats did really well at Bramham and Burgham so he and Kitty deserve a place, but it was so amazing to actually hear that they have been selected. To represent Team GBR is a massive achievement and to do it with this horse means so much. I’m so excited, I used to dream about being a team groom and now having the opportunity to do it is amazing.”
Zanie King (Laura Collett and London 52): “For me, it is unbelievable to be selected, especially when you have such a close working relationship with the horse and rider – it means the world. I’m just delighted for Laura and for Dan (London 52). You never assume anything, but when you get selected it brings it all together. It’s a massive reward for lots of talent and hard work that has been put in by all of the team. I love being a team player and working as part of Team GBR is really special.”
Amy Phillips (Piggy French and Quarrycrest Echo): “It’s very exciting to be selected for the Europeans. Quarrycrest Echo (Red) is a really cool horse and I know that he and Piggy will go out there to do their very best for Team GBR. It’s fantastic to be part of the team and we are all really looking forward to getting out there."
The British senior teams are supported by the BEF’s UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme.
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