Somerby-based eventer Andrew Hoy bid a fond farewell to The Blue Frontier as the curtain came down on the pair’s 2017 Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials.
Hoy’s steed is to be retired following this four-star event, but it wasn’t to be a fairytale finale as they accrued 16 penalty points from Sunday’s show jumping – the final discipline in the three-day event.
That saw them to a total of 135.4 penalty points, unfortunately not threatening the top 10, with the winning score sitting at 45.6, from Oliver Townend and Ballaghmor Class.
But for Hoy, a champion in both 2004 and way back in 1979, this day was about more than just a result. He was delighted to end with a completion in a place that has become a second home.
He said: “Retirement has been something that the owner and I have been discussing for a while.
“He’s been a great horse and he was great on Saturday, even though I had 40 penalties on the cross-country course.
“But I was very happy with the way he ran round, his show jumping wasn’t as I wanted it with four poles down, but it is what it is. He’s now going to have a great retirement in the hunting field.”
Two other Melton area riders took part in this year’s Burghley Horse Trials.
Willa Newton successfully completed the three days on her mount Chance Remark, finishing in 35th place overall.
She performed well in dressage, finishing on 47 penalty points to be 19th after the fist section.
She had some issues on the cross country course, with 40 jumping penalties and 38 time penalties. That saw her drop to 43rd.
But just four penalties on the showjumping course helped Willa and Chance Remark move up to 35th on a total of 129.
For Emma Hyslop-Webb the cross country course proved her undoing. She and her mount Pennlands Douglas were eliminated at that stage.
In the earlier dressage they had finished with 58 penalties and were placed 49th going into the cross country.