In this video break from the USEA Vault, originally provided in partnership with Eventing Training Online, William Fox-Pitt coaches upper level eventers Allison Springer, Jan Byyny, Sharon White, and Kate Samuels through show jumping exercises and provides guidance on improving their rounds. Fox-Pitt's primary focus is developing and maintaining a quality canter that the horse can jump well from. From a good quality canter, the rider can make adjustments to their stride length and their line to meet distances appropriately.
Born in 1969 and having ridden from a young age, William Fox-Pitt started eventing at the age of 15. Encouraged by his parents, both of whom completed Badminton and Burghley, he represented Britain throughout his teens, winning the individual silver medal at the Junior Europeans in 1987, Young Rider team gold medals in successive European Championships in 1988 and 1989, and completing Badminton himself at the age of 20. His first Burghley win, five years later, established him as a regular on the senior British Team and guaranteed him a ticket to the Atlanta Olympics in 1996. In 2003, William and his wife, Alice Plunkett, began the development of a 28-stall state-of-the-art training center in Hinton St. Mary, Dorset. In 2005, everything was complete and Wood Lane Stables has been home to Fox-Pitt Eventing ever since.
Fox-Pitt was the first British rider to become eventing’s World No. 1, a distinction he achieved in 2002, 2009, 2010, and again in 2014. He has represented his country consistently over the past 20 years, winning team bronze at the 2002 World Equestrian Games in Jerez, team silver at the 2004 Athens Olympics, team silver at the 2006 World Equestrian Games in Aachen, team bronze at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, team gold and individual silver at the 2010 World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, team silver at the 2012 London Olympics, individual bronze at the 2013 European Championships in Malmo, and team silver and individual bronze at the 2014 World Equestrian Games in Normandy. He has won seven team gold medals at the European Championships and has been the British No. 1 eleven times. In 2011, Fox-Pitt became the first rider to win a record six Burghley titles (on six different horses) and became one of the first riders to ever win a CCI2*, CCI3*, and CCI4* at the same event on the same day - a feat achieved at Tattersalls, Ireland.
He is the only rider to have won five out of the six CCI5*-Ls worldwide having won Burghley (1994, 2002, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2011), Badminton (2004 & 2015), Luhmühlen (2008), Kentucky (2010, 2012, 2014), and Pau (2011, 2013). He has won the HSBC FEI Classics, a series linking the top six Three-Day Events in the world, four times (2008, 2010, 2012 again in 2014) and finished second in 2011. Learn more on his website, www.foxpitteventing.co.uk.