Zara Phillips Crashes Spectacularly Out of Badminton

  May 10, 2009 at 3:21 pm by

From the Royal Forums avatar collection

From the Royal Forums avatar collection

The reigning world champion 3 day eventer, Zara Phillips, granddaughter of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, had a cruel disappointment at the famed Badminton Horse Trials this weekend. Her father, Capt. Mark Phillips, had won 4 prestigious titles here but for Zara the trials represented only heartache.

Her first horse Ardfield Magic Star was unnerved by the spectators during the dressage phase. Zara lost her ordinary cool when she yelled at some paparazzi that “this was a competition, not a #$^% social event.” In fairness to Zara, her horse reared on her as a camera clicked near his ear while they were going into the starting gate, but older royal followers were reminded of the time that her mother Princess Anne once told reporters to ‘naff off’ during a horse trial.

But Toytown tried to rear also during the dressage phase when Zara attempted to back him up, so dressage wasn’t a good day for either of her horses.

Ardfield Magic Star being withdrawn from Badminton

Click the image to see the photo at the Daily Mail

Toytown falling at Badminton

Click the image to see the photo at The Times Online

The cross-country phase looked more promising. However, Ardfield Magic Star pulled up lame and Toytown had a frightening collision against a very solid obstacle. Luckily neither Toytown nor Zara were hurt, but given Toytown’s injury last year that kept her from the Olympics, Zara quite wisely pulled both horses out of the competition and waited for another day to show. Luckily Zara didn’t have the problem of young Aaron Millar who had to suffer a small dog chasing him and his horse across the course. Badminton is a favorite event for dog owners to bring their pets but when the dogs get loose, it can have severe consequences for the rider, horse, and dog. Despite Zara’s poor showing, the Brits did well, with Oliver Townsend winning on the last ride of the showjumping competition on Sunday.

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