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Page last updated at 16:50 GMT, Monday, 3 May 2010 17:50 UK

Paul Tapner jumps clear to win Badminton Horse Trials

Highlights - Tapner triumphs at Badminton

Australian Paul Tapner jumped a clear final round to win the Badminton Horse Trials as Mary King's bid to become the oldest winner of the event was dashed.

The lead changed several times in a tense, rain-drenched showjumping finale but overnight leader Tapner, last to go on Inonothing, kept his nerve.

German Andreas Dibowski was second with Britain's Daisy Berkeley third.

Briton King, 48, had four faults on board Imperial Cavalier to drop from her overnight second spot to fourth.

Tapner, whose other horse Stormhill Michael also jumped a clear round to finish 10th, becomes the third Australian rider after Andrew Hoy and Lucinda Fredericks to win the four-star three-day event in the last five years.

"This means everything," said Tapner, who is based at Highworth, near Swindon.

"Every second of this year has been focused on this moment.


"This is the biggest and best event, and you just want to be here. It can't get much better than this."

Dibowski, riding Euroridings Butts Leon, registered 4.6 penalty points more than the winner.

Berkeley, on Spring Along, was a further 0.5 behind and was delighted with her highest finish in a four-star event.

"I've always known it was in the horse. He had some big wins last year, and he has been better than ever - he's like a fine wine," she said.

"I knew he could do it. He finds Badminton quite exciting, and it was just a case of whether or not the nerves would get to him.

Imperial Cavalier and Mary King
King was hoping to become the oldest Badminton champion in its 61-year history

"But I was thrilled with how he jumped, and he was great in the cross-country on Sunday."

Germany's Simone Deitermann, who lay in third place after Sunday's cross-country, dropped fences to end 12th.

Making his first Badminton appearance since 2000, three-time winner Mark Todd came 18th on Grass Valley.

The winner of the dressage round, German Kai Ruder finished well down the field in 39th.

After collecting 24 faults and seven time penalties to wind up 48th, world champion Zara Phillips was thoroughly frustrated with her horse, Glenbuck.

"He didn't showjump well enough," she said. "I can't do anything about it if he doesn't help me out as well.

"At the moment, we are not good enough - I've never said we were good enough - but he is my only four-star horse at the moment and I have got to try to make it better."

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see also
Phillips rules out Toytown return
08 Mar 10 |  Equestrian
Britain suffer European setback
03 Sep 09 |  Equestrian
Fall ends Townend Grand Slam bid
25 Apr 10 |  Equestrian

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Sporting Life KING LIKES THE BIG STAGE - 4 hrs ago Aussie rules showjumping - 16 hrs ago
Times Online Persistence pays off as Tapner wins Badminton - 20 hrs ago
Telegraph Tapner topspin tames Inonothing - 21 hrs ago
Horsemart Australian Paul Tapner takes over lead at Badminton - 22 hrs ago


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