EQUESTRIANISM: Funnell's full steam to victory

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reports from Windsor

Pippa Funnell won the international section of the Brittany Ferries Three-Day Event yesterday, after an impressive all-round performance on Anne Burnet's classy thoroughbred, Designer Tramp.

The six-year-old horse, who led after the dressage, had no penalties to add in either Saturday's cross-country or yesterday's show jumping. He looks to have a bright future with Funnell, as long as the owner does not receive too tempting an offer for him.

Funnell defeated the French farmer, Didier Seguret, on his long-standing 16-year-old partner, Newlot, who was competing in his 18th three-day event and now goes into retirement. Seguret had wanted to end Newlot's competitive days on a happy note and that wish was granted when the horse completed the cross-country and show jumping without penalties.

Philip Surl went clear yesterday to finish third on Coxley Kontiki, ahead of Annabelle May on Lakefield Prince and Lucy Thompson (now riding for Ireland) on Nobleman III. Seguret was sixth with his second mount, Mon Petit.

Funnell, who won three-day events at Bramham in 1992 and Blenheim in 1993, is now riding one of the most impressive string of young horses. Designer Tramp, who sped round the cross-country in a stylish and effortless gallop, is one of four six-year-olds who are all so talented that she finds it impossible to choose between them.

The national section was won by Polly Gowers on the seven-year-old gelding, I'm a Believer - competing in his second three-day event. The first one was last year at Tweseldown, where the horse was let down by his dressage. This time Gowers was lying equal second after the dressage, thanks to lessons from the British Olympic rider, Carl Hester.

Results, Sporting Digest, page 25