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Funnell One Win Away From Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing

LEXINGTON, KY—May 15, 2003—Pippa Funnell of Great Britain has completed a historic second step that has her in an unprecedented position to possibly become the first winner of the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing.

Following back-to-back wins in the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event and the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials, Funnell has positioned herself to win a $250,000 bonus if she can win the CCI Four Star at the Burghley Masterfoods event in England in September.

Funnell, the two-time defending European champion who helped Great Britain win team Silver Medals at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and at last year’s World Equestrian Games, won the Rolex Kentucky Four Star in late April on Primmore’s Pride and the Badminton Four Star in England in early May on Supreme Rock. Since the start of the Rolex Grand Slam in 1998, she is the first rider to win two consecutive events to earn a shot at the bonus that goes to any rider who wins three Rolex Grand Slam Events in a row.

“This is an incredible achievement,” said James R. Wolf, who helped create the Rolex Grand Slam. “The level of competition at these three events is the highest the sport has to offer. For any rider to win two in a row is a great achievement. Olympic champions like Blyth Tait and David O’Connor have come close, but this is the first time a rider has managed two wins in succession and all eyes will be on Pippa as she goes for history at Burghley in September.”

Funnell will seek to complete the Rolex Grand Slam at Burghley, September 4-7. While the challenge is daunting, the 34-year-old is unfazed. “Yes there will be added pressure,” she said, “but I have the best string of horses I’ve ever had. For sure, I intend to give it my best shot."

courtesy of Classic Communications


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