Stars of Olympics bring the crowds in at Isleham

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The Isleham One Day Event enjoyed one of its best ever turnouts as equestrian fans flocked in to see some of Team GB’s Olympic stars.

The 24th staging of the British Eventing season opener saw London 2012 team eventing silver medallists, Zara Phillips MBE and Tina Cook, compete in a star-studded line-up.

And joint organiser Jackie Seddon was thrilled with how it all panned out, after facing competition from three other events across the country that weekend.

“It went exceptionally well,” she said. “We hardly lost anyone as the weather held out, and it was probably the best one we’ve ever done.

“I think some people were surprised for what it is, but Zara Phillips coming might have brought in more spectators than usual.”

Team GB’s Oliver Townend claimed the Open Intermediate Section N category with a score of 28.20, ahead of Laura Collett (28.40) and Izzy Taylor (30.70).

The Section O staging was also claimed by a Team GB rider, with Georgina French scoring an unbeatable score of 30.30 with her Seapatrick Dark Cruise horse.

Collett (32.20) and Jonelle Price (37.00) completed the top three places, while Phillips rode High Kingdom to a 14th-place finish (51.10).

The Intermediate Section was won by Collett, with Townend completing a weekend double with victory in the Open Novice Section.

“We couldn’t have run it without the helpers,” Seddon said. “They give up their time to help out, and it’s a long day starting with a briefing at 8am.”