Brown lets emotions flow after Burghley cross-country course

·2-min read
Phil Brown is making his debut at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials (Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials)

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials’ boy next door Phil Brown could not hide his emotions at completing the cross-country course for the first time on Saturday writes Tom Masters.

Brown, 35, completed the course in a time of 13 minutes and 55 seconds on a day in which only 31 riders returned from the original field of 52.

That saw him receive 62 penalty points, which combined with his dressage score of 35.5 sees the Stamford-based equestrian sit 29th heading into Sunday’s show jumping finale.

And Brown was incredibly emotional following the conclusion of his Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials cross-country debut.

He said: “It was absolutely amazing, I can’t believe what has just happened.

“I came with a bit of a plan that I just wanted to try and get round, time faults weren’t really part of it but it was super hard work at the top and then to keep chugging back, he was mega, he just kept trying.

“People were screaming everywhere and I think I was screaming louder than all of them in the end, people from back home in Yorkshire, where I am originally from came, so a really good atmosphere.

“He is a really honest horse and if he can see the fences then he will keep going but I just knew that he wouldn’t be the quickest.”

The course was designed by American Derek di Grazia for the first time, taking over from long time course designer Captain Mark Phillips, but Brown insisted he only had one goal, get round the course and reach the finish line.

He added: “I planned to go long in the big leaf pit jump, I had half a mind at the second to go direct, but because of the water I couldn’t see what I wanted to see.

“I wanted to be direct but then I thought, you know go long, get round.

“Tonight when I celebrate getting round, I’ll have a shower, probably cry a bit more and have something to eat before tomorrow!”

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials (1-4 September 2022) returns after a two-year hiatus, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. A major international sporting and social event for over 50 years it attracts 80 of the world’s top equestrians and over 170,000 visitors. For more information visit www.burghley-horse.co.uk